REGAL RINGNECK SNAKE
Diadophis punctatus regalis

Although there are three subspecies of ringnecks found in Texas, the regal ringneck is the only one found in the area of this work. They are found in all the counties of this work.
Most of the literature considers the regal ringnecks in W. Texas to be intergrades with the prairie ringnecks.
This is the ringneck without the ring.
They seem to feed well on other smooth-scaled snakes. I have a friend who has had a 22-23 inch specimens for years which feeds primarily on Sonora, Hypsiglena and Leptotyphlops.
They are a very slippery and soft-bodied snake and are hard to get hold of. (Sorry to end the sentence with a preposition, but it feels less stilted that way.)
Generally, the farther west you go, the bigger they are. I have found specimens in Brewster county that were close to twenty inches. The ones from Brewster County have been lighter gray than the one pictured. This snake was collected in the morning in the Apache Mtns. of Culberson County.