One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A harmless North American constrictor that is typically strongly marked with red and black on yellow or white. It was formerly supposed to suck milk from sleeping cows.
Genus Lampropeltis, family Colubridae: several species, in particular L. triangulum. Compare with king snake
- ‘They didn't even have an old jaded milk snake lying around the place.’
- ‘Betting shop boss Liz Lowe would have put money on never seeing a reptile at work, until she came face-to-face with this milk snake apparently guarding the safe at Ladbrokes in Colchester.’
- ‘Species seen included black rat snake, ribbon snake, milk snake, gray tree frog, green frog, pickerel frog, wood frog, spring peeper, mountain dusky salamander, and the rare and beautiful long-tailed salamander.’
- ‘Ventilation inspector Jim Knowles has dealt with some slippery customers, but nothing could have prepared him for coming face to face with a Mexican milk snake in Tameside.’
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