Chain Snake (coronella getula, Linn.; genus ophibolus, Bd. and Gd.), an American species, first described by Catesby under this name; it is also called thunder snake, and king snake. It has been arranged under different genera, but the above is the name given to it by Dr. Ilolbrook. The head is small, short, and rounded at the snout; the nostrils are large, and open laterally; the eyes small, and the iris dusky; the neck is very little contracted, and is covered above with small smooth scales; the body is elongated, stout, with large, smooth, six-sided scales above, and large plates below; the tail is quite short, thick, and soon tapers to a horny point. The colors of this handsome snake are singularly arranged; the groundwork of the whole upper surface is a rich shining black, all the plates about the head being marked with one or more white spots;branch going to the ring in front, the other to the ring behind, causing a nearly continuous waving white line on the sides from the neck to the vent; alternating with the dorsal bars there are irregular white blotches reaching to the abdomen, which is shining violet black; the tail has four or five transverse rings. The abdominal plates are about 215 in number, and the bifid subcaudal scales from 40 to 50. In a specimen 42 inches long, the head measures a little over an inch, the body 36 inches, and the tail 5 inches; they attain the length of more than 4 feet. Though fond of moist and shady places, it does not take to the water or to trees; it feeds on moles, mice, small birds, and reptiles, and even other snakes. It is found from New York to Florida; its western limit is not positively known.

Chain Snake.

Chain Snake.