Eastern Hognose Snake

Heterodon platyrhinos

Jeff LeClere

Eastern Hognose Snakes grow to nearly four feet long. They have thick bodies, a wide neck, and a slightly upturned snout.

The color of this snake can vary with yellow, tan, brown, gray, or reddish color. They also have dark blotches on their backs. Hognose snakes can even be all black.

These snakes live in woods or fields.

SREL Herpetology

Hognose snakes mate in the Spring and females lay up to 60 eggs in soil in June or July. The eggs hatch after a month and a half to two months.

Baby snakes are between six and nine inches long.

Eastern Hognose Snakes are active during the day.

If disturbed by a predator, these snakes have several ways to defend themselves. First, they will inflate their necks to look bigger, and they will hiss loudly and strike. When they do this, they very much resemble cobras, which we do not have in our area.

If looking tough doesn't work, the Eastern Hognose Snake will play dead. They are very good at it. The snake will roll over and open its mouth with its tongue hanging out. They will even stay limp when they are picked up. If you place it right side up, the snake will flop right back over and play dead.

If this doesn't work, the snake may bite; however, hognose snakes rarely bite people.

Copyright, John White

Eastern Hognose Snakes are predators and eat a lot of different prey, although it seems toads are their favorites. They also eat frogs, small mammals, birds, bird eggs, insects, lizards, smaller snakes, reptile eggs, and carrion (dead animals).

In Winter, hognose snakes hibernate by burrowing into the soil, or by making a den out of an old woodchuck, skunk, or fox burrow.

Predators of hognose snakes include: hawks, owls, Red Fox, Virginia Opossum, and other snake predators.

Jeff LeClere

Relationships in Nature:

PREY
PREDATORS
SHELTER
OTHER

American Toad

Red-tailed Hawk

Switchgrass

Woodchuck SP

Wood Frog

Red Fox

Poison Ivy

Red Fox SP

Meadow Vole

Virginia Opossum

Bracken Fern

Striped Skunk SP

Eastern Chipmunk

Striped Skunk

Virginia Creeper

Chigger Pa

Least Shrew

Cinnamon Fern

Field Cricket

Highbush Blueberry

Spring Peeper

Spicebush

Northern Ringneck Snake

Evergreen Blackberry

Southern Leopard Frog

Trumpet Creeper

Northern Bobwhite

Red Clover

Mourning Dove

Spotted Joe-pye Weed

Five-lined Skink

Lamb's Quarters

Differential Grasshopper

Witch Hazel

Black Rat Snake

Common Reed

Eastern Box Turtle

Kentucky Bluegrass

Eastern Gray Squirrel

Patent-leather Beetle

Norway Rat

Relationship to Humans:

Like all snakes, Eastern Hognose Snakes are very important. They control populations of smaller animals, such as mice and rats. They do no harm to people, and should be left alone.

SCIENTIFIC CLASSIFICATION

KINGDOM
Animal
PHYLUM
Chordate
CLASS
Reptile
ORDER
Squamata
FAMILY
Colubridae
GENUS
Heterodon
SPECIES
Heterodon platyrhinos

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