Milk Snake (Lampropeltis triangulum)
Description: 24 - 36 inches. Milk Snakes are light colored snakes with red, reddish-brown, or brown blotches that are outlined in black. Milk Snakes with the brown blotches are more common in the Northeast part of Iowa. The belly is light colored and checkered with black markings. In the Eastern part of the state, there is light colored Y or V shaped mark on the back of the neck. As you move West across Iowa this mark transitions into a heart shape and eventually a simple bar across the neck.
Similar Species: Prairie Kingsnakes are similar in appearance to Milk Snakes with brown blotches, but have two elongated blotches behind the head. These two blotches may connect to give appearance of a Y, but will be separated from the blotch making up the inside of the Y shape. Milk Snakes found within the range of Prairie Kingsnakes usually have red colored blotches as well.