The Eastern hognose snake or southern hog-nosed snake (Heterodon platirhinos) is a benign non-venomous colubrid species endemic to North America without a subspecies currently known.
The Eastern hog-nosed snake is native to the Nearctic ecozone and located from the southern half of the US from central New England to Florida, southern New Hampshire, eastern Texas, western Kansas and in southern Canada.
The species has been absent in several areas from the Great Lakes area including south of Lakes Erie and Ontario and southern portions of Wisconsin.
Where are Eastern hognose snakes found?
The southern hognose snake occupies coastal locations, pine forests, deciduous woodlands, prairies, meadows, pastures, woodlands with sandy land, areas, and farmlands.
The southern hognose steps on average 20 to 30 inches (50 to 76 cm) using a thick body and a wide triangle-shaped head. The females are bigger than males. Their color pattern is variable and ranges from black, brown, olive, grey, yellow, or orange.
Occasionally they’re blotched or checkered with big rectangle-shaped stains and blotches their sides and back, but it can be a good color. Its stomach is cream grey or yellow in color.
The southern hognose strength in the wild is unknown but is known to live for 11 years. Birds of prey, owls, hawks, skunks, opossums and other snakes prey upon them such as even the racer or even the milk snake.
The southern hognose lone creatures and mainly active during the daytime, however, they occasionally confine their activity to morning and night in warm weather. They’re good burrowers and create their own burrows, utilize or expand dens of other animals such as skunks, foxes or woodchucks, to hibernate in winter from October.
The species has its name from the distinctive upturned snout, utilized to dig into the dirt and leaf litter. When faced or feeling compromised that the eastern hognose, increases the mind and drag and hiss loudly, and flatten the throat skin, like a cobra hood and then lunge itself towards the danger.
Due to this behavior, it is sometimes known as the “puff adder” but it is not to be mistaken to the”actual” and highly venomous suck adder located in Africa. They play dead, then rolling with their mouth excrete or a filthy musk to escape predators.
The eastern hognose are offered from the exotic pet industry, yet this kind of snakes are not simple to keep because of their particular dietary requirements, since they may create liver problems if fed rodents.
Eastern hognose Subspecies
The southern hognose does not have any subspecies now recognized and has been initially described by Latreille in 1801.
Eastern hognose Diet
The Eastern hognose prevents small mammals like rodents, salamanders, small reptiles and reptile eggs, frogs, small birds, and insects. However, these snakes possess specialized in ingesting toads with their own nose.
By using their grinding skills, broad mouths with elastic jaws and curved teeth that they search the wide-bodied toads. They are resistant to the radicals toads secrete, their resistance stems out of enlarged adrenal glands that secrete large amounts of hormones, utilized neutralize the strong toxins within the toad’s skin.
Though the toads will frequently match themselves with the atmosphere in an endeavor to escape being eaten by the snake that they seldom succeed. The hognose includes a set of teeth found in the rear of the mouth that are considered to be employed to permeate those toads.
The species contains technical salivary glands that secrete a gentle amphibian-specific venom which aids them subduing amphibians, even although it’s harmless to other animals and people.
Eastern hognose Reproduction
The southern hognose breeding season occurs from the spring from April to May, plus they mate when they are about 2 years of age. They are oviparous and females set out of 8 to 40 eggs using a mean about 25, in June or early July, also quantify about 1 1⁄4 at × 1 at (33 mm × 23 mm).
The eggs are put beneath a stone or log or in melancholy in the sandy land and can hatch after about 60 days after, from late July to September.
Females will not look after the eggs or the young snakes as soon as they hatch. The hatchlings are created with a span of approximately 6.5 to 8.3 inches (16.5 to 21 cm).
Eastern hognose Conservation
The southern hognose snake has been classified as a Least Concern species in the IUCN Red List, also because of the species intended large population and broad distribution.
Although nearly all of their normal habitat remains untouched, even during their scope habitat destruction impacts their numbers have diminished.
The inhabitant’s numbers can continue to diminish since the toad populations also decrease, which looks like true from southern North America.
Though the southern hog-nosed snake is benign it is often confused for venomous rattlesnakes, and lots of experiences with people likely end with all the snake being murdered. They’re also victims of roadkill.