first Shawnee post I did, you'll find photos of Mr. King, a native Black Kingsnake. Although super friendly and gentle with humans, we had to keep the kingsnakes away from the other snakes because kingsnakes love to eat other snakes, and no snake seemed to be too big for dinner. I'll have to check with Jenny, but I think she said poor Pumpkin (the Corn Snake) had his whole head swallowed by Mr. King. Thank goodness someone was there to pull Pumpkin's head out! Kingsnakes will even eat venomous snakes. Apparently, Kingsnakes are immune to venom from Ohio's three native poisonous snakes (Timber Rattler, Northern Copperhead, and Eastern Massasauga).
...the kingsnake's scales are beautiful. I learned in an art history course I took eons ago that early artists mimicked snake scales and patterns in their art and the designs may have lead to the development of mosaics. I can certainly see the connection here!
Matty learned an open-handed technique was a great way to get hesitant kids accustomed to the larger snakes. The kids were less fearful with open hands and soon grew to love the snakes. If you have children who love snakes (or are afraid of them), go to Shawnee and visit with Jenny at the nature center. Kids really respond to her. I saw so many timid children overcome their fears and learn to appreciate another part of nature after visiting with Jenny and all the critters at the nature center.