Michigan State University masthead

Brown (Dekay's) Snake

Brown (Dekay's) Snake
Storeria dekayi

Image of brown (Dekay's) snakeDescription

A small brown or gray snake with a light stripe down the back bordered by black dots. These dots may join to form crossbars. The belly is white, cream, or pinkish in color.

Adult Length:

9 to 15 inches.

Habitat and Habits

Brown Snakes live in a variety of places, including old fields, vacant city lots, marshes, and woodlands. Most of their time is spent hiding under objects or underground. They feed on earthworms and slugs.


Females give birth to litters of 5 to 27 young in summer. The tiny babies are black or gray with a yellow "collar" around the neck.

Range and Status

Found throughout the Lower Peninsula and the southern tip of the Upper Peninsula. Can be common even in farming and residential areas.


James Harding
MSU Museum
Michigan State University
East Lansing, MI 48824
(517) 353-7978