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Snake ID please (TeriM and breeze take note--Snake photos)

hazelrunpack
April 18th, 2010, 09:21 PM
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hazel was in the blind today, photographing birds. Between spates of bird activity at the feeders, she unzips the side windows of the blind for a little air and sits in her chair for a break.

On one such break, she was lookin' out the window and suddenly noticed Ms Macie stalking something on the other side of the fence. Ms Macie's target seemed to be in front of the blind...which was not one of the open sides. Figuring there must be some doves under the feeders on that side, hazel stood up, stuck the lens of the camera out and saw:

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Nope. Not a dove. :eek: :laughing:

hazelrunpack
April 18th, 2010, 09:26 PM
It was about 18 to 20 inches long and heading toward the blind. Since hazel like snakes, but not well enough to share a small space with one that big, she unzipped the front and stepped out to get some close-ups.

I'm thinking this is an eastern hognose. It was trying to convince me it was powerful and dangerous with the hood flare, but instead of rearing up to face me like a cobra, it tilted it's back to me to show me the magnificent breadth of its back! :D Very lovely, but not very intimidating.

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When it realized it wasn't trapped, it just slithered off into the brush.

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I've seen teeny hognose snakes before but never one this big. So I'm just making an educated guess that that's what this was.

Anyone know any differently? :o

Dee-O-Gee
April 18th, 2010, 09:33 PM
O...M....G....Heebie Jeebies! :eek:

Any snake looks like a king cobra or python to me, but these are great close ups Hazel. Too close for my liking. :o Did Ms. Macie get really close to it?

hazelrunpack
April 18th, 2010, 09:39 PM
Nah...she was a good 30 ft away by the time I saw it. I'm pretty sure it's an eastern hognose and nonvenomous. If she'd caught up to it, likely it would have rolled over and played dead. :p (no really...that's what they do!...leastwise when they're wee little baby snakes they do :D)

Frenchy
April 18th, 2010, 09:43 PM
hoooooooooly macaroni !! I like snakes but not when their heads go flat like that :eek:

hazelrunpack
April 18th, 2010, 09:48 PM
It was trying very hard to look dangerous. :D Pretty impressive flare on the hood, but it needs to practice its cobra stance. A cobra would have been bopping around face forward, mouth open with tongue testing the air. This guy just flared, then tilted the back of his head toward the camera to show me what an impressive dude he was. :rolleyes:

Still, he was big enough that I really wouldn't have been too happy had he slithered into the blind with me, so I'm happy Ms Macie was lookin' out for her ol' Ma. :D

Dee-O-Gee
April 18th, 2010, 09:49 PM
likely it would have rolled over and played dead. :p (no really...that's what they do!...leastwise when they're wee little baby snakes they do :D)

If Gryphon would have spotted a snake playing dead, he's be rolling all over it. :yuck: Seriously...a snake that plays dead? :shrug: Interesting...:cool:

Frenchy
April 18th, 2010, 09:53 PM
If Gryphon would have spotted a snake playing dead, he's be rolling all over it. :yuck: Seriously...a snake that plays dead? :shrug: Interesting...:cool:

I saw a show on Animal Planet where they showed a couple of animals/species that do play dead as defense mechanism , pretty cool !

What a good girl Macie is ! :thumbs up

hazelrunpack
April 18th, 2010, 10:26 PM
Cole once found a little one (about 6 inches long) in the basement yard. When I saw him messin' with something I ran over and found it...it looked absolutely dead. Upside down, jaw slightly askew, tongue hanging out...the whole kit and kaboodle. Poor little hognose snake, right? :rip:

Nope... :D I picked it up and tried to roll it on its stomach so I could look at the body. It's response was to roll belly up again, hang its jaw open a little wider and stick out its tongue even further. So as to look even deader, don't ya know :laughing: If it had hissed, "Dang it lady, what's your problem? Can't you see I'm dead!?!?" it would have been perfect! :laugh:

So I put it in the grass, removed the dogs, and by the time I came back it had slithered off. :D

Dee-O-Gee
April 18th, 2010, 10:35 PM
I saw a show on Animal Planet where they showed a couple of animals/species that do play dead as defense mechanism , pretty cool !



Kinda like Kill-Dear Birds. If you go near their nests which they stupidly home on gravel or stones, they act like their wings are broken. :shrug: We have kill-dears around my office and every year, we're out there putting up stakes to make sure no one drives over the nests. :yell:

hazelrunpack
April 18th, 2010, 10:50 PM
Then, on the other side of the coin, are the turkeys. Now they can be really stupid... The hen has a specific call that means "I'm on the nest and there is danger approaching!" I can't tell you how many times I've passed turkey nests, totally oblivious to their presence until the hen starts telling me "I'm on the nest and there is danger approaching!" :rolleyes: hazel just doesn't get how telling potential predators that they're close to the nest can possibly be an effective defense. :o Luckily, the dummies breed like...well....like turkeys. :laughing: Big broods! Lots of them...

MyBirdIsEvil
April 18th, 2010, 10:59 PM
It's definitely a hognose, they're no other native snake with a nose like that that flares up like a cobra.

I've never seen one like that though. They generally have a distinctive pattern. I would assume he was ready to shed, therefore the pattern was dulled, if it wasn't for the extremely clear eyes, so that leads me to believe he's just like that. Kind of wonder if it's not a subspecies or something.

hazelrunpack
April 18th, 2010, 11:09 PM
I have a north american wildlife book that mentions that they're extremely variable in color, some of them being monotone. I'm thinking it may have just finished shedding--there were a couple of loose scales on his nose but the eyes are clear. :shrug:

MyBirdIsEvil
April 18th, 2010, 11:55 PM
The closer I look he does kind of have a pattern. It's just extremely light and blends in to the rest of his body.

Still, he's very pretty. I haven't seen one exactly like that. I've never even seen one in the wild though, just captive.

Since there's already snakes in this thread and you seem to like them, here's a couple of mine. Not sure if I've shared them before.

First is a cottonmouth. Venomous pit viper. Not a very good pic because it was from the phone, didn't have my camera with me at the time.

Second is a broadbanded watersnake. Very common around here and non-venomous. They're curious and they'll look at you from the water.

Third is a mississippi mudsnake. Very rare and docile, they absolutely do NOT bite. Their defense is to either play dead by rolling into a hoop shape and turning over (this is why they're also called a hoop snake), or bash into you with their head (:laughing: this one did the latter, it has to be the worst defense mechanism ever. I don't think it would deter a predator.)
The belly is very colorful orange. Unfortunately this one left before I could get a good pic of the belly.

hazelrunpack
April 19th, 2010, 12:08 AM
Nice pics! The last two are beautiful! Love the banding on the watersnake! (I find water moccasins to be too drab for my tastes :laughing:)

I've seen orange bellied snakes here...but I'm not sure if they're the same as the one you show. The ones here have solid orange bellies, but the Mississippi mudsnake looks like it may have a banded black and orange belly? Or is that pattern only on the sides and the belly is monotone orange? Very pretty snake, though!

MyBirdIsEvil
April 19th, 2010, 12:14 AM
http://www.clarionledger.com/misc/blogs/Outdoors/babroom/uploaded_images/mudsnake-789758.jpg

Someone elses pic. That's what their belly looks like. It's kind of a checkered pattern.

Mud snakes I don't think range up that far north. The most likely snake you would encounter with an orange or yellow belly is a ringneck snake. Were they small and grey? They like mulchy areas.

http://www.wildlife.state.nh.us/Wildlife/Wildlife_images/frog_images/ring-neck1.jpg

There are actually some very beautiful cottomouths. We encountered one that had beautiful reddish brown bands. Unfortunately I didn't get a close look because it decided we were in its territory and when it started swimming at me aggressively I left :laughing:.

hazelrunpack
April 19th, 2010, 12:18 AM
It could have been a ringneck. The last time I saw one was about 20 years ago, and all I remember is the beautiful orange belly. :o

There are actually some very beautiful cottomouths. We encountered one that had beautiful reddish brown bands. Unfortunately I didn't get a close look because it decided we were in its territory and when it started swimming at me aggressively I left :laughing:.


Well, you know, discretion is said to be the better part of valor! :D Sounds like you made a good choice there. :laughing:

growler~GateKeeper
April 19th, 2010, 02:08 AM
Hazel your hognose has a very nice hood :lovestruck:

MBIE great pics :cool:

The closest I've come to a snake is behind glass at the zoo and at a reptile rescue

Goldfields
April 19th, 2010, 05:05 AM
Same as I look at our Brown snake and marvel how can a snake with such a small head be the snake here that causes the most human deaths, I also wonder how a snake as cobra-like as that hognose can be harmless? The bend in this Brown's neck is the signal that it's going to strike.
I am loving this thread, your snakes are really beautiful. Unfortunately, although our Brown is protected, we are allowed to kill them if they pose a threat to us or stock, and they do because they are known to hang around buildings, and they generally are in pairs. We've lost a foal and a lovely jersey heifer due to Brown snakes. And, right where I live, because they live a peaceful life in the forest opposite us, they can be HUGE! I was walking dogs a mile from here and up the side of the road, towards us, came a 7 footer if he was an inch, and very thick of course. The two cattle dogs froze and didn't move a muscle as it went by, thank heaven. We've also had them that big down at our hay shed. Seeing a baby Brown can kill I'd hate to know how many people a big one could kill.
Anyway, love all your photo's. We have a red bellied black snake here that is a beauty, not as poisonous as some, and more placid. I like yours that are safe and play dead though, wish we could import some.

hazelrunpack
April 19th, 2010, 10:58 AM
That's a shame about your foal and heifer, Goldfields. :( :grouphug:

The US is working very hard to prevent the accidental (or otherwise) import of your browns, Goldfields. Our browns are a pretty innocuous sort. Here's a little one from last year. At that age it was small enough to sit in my hand and they're non-poisonous. I think they don't get much larger than 20 inches, even full-grown. There are also brown water snakes, also nonvenomous.

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The eastern hognose is not very cobralike--it's evolved to spread the ribs like a cobra, but that's just a superficial attempt to make it look large and dangerous--more for the surprise factor than anything else. They're actually quite shy and retiring, and can't back up their ruse with anything but an attempt to look dead if the attacker persists. :laughing: So we can admire their beauty in safety. :thumbs up

DoubleRR
April 20th, 2010, 11:00 AM
Great pics, Hazel! Not too many wild snakes where we are now--used to have lots of garter, bull and rattle snakes in southern BC. All of those are in Alberta too, but not so much in this area. Only snake I get to see is my pet corn Delilah, or other pet snakes. D is 55" long and very friendly to those whose smell she knows. The dogs and cats just think I am nuts, as usual, and do not bother her at all.
http://i894.photobucket.com/albums/ac143/pasomystic/DELILAH.jpg

http://i894.photobucket.com/albums/ac143/pasomystic/Mix024.jpg

Goldfields
April 20th, 2010, 11:59 AM
Wow, Delilah is just beautiful! She's not poisonous?

I was sitting in my kitchen one day, chatting to a friend on the phone, when I noticed a movement out of the corner of my eye. Turned and here was a brown snake hanging from the guttering, swaying back and forth slowly while it tried to figure out if it could get in the window. :eek: I quickly told my friend there was a snake on the roof, had to go :laughing:, then I headed for my front bedroom because the only place it could get up there was up a pencil pine straight outside the window- searching for eggs and baby birds. Sure enough, down it came, dropping the last few feet. It meandered off over to my vegie garden so I rang neighbors and the two brothers came over and John shot it. 5 feet 6inches it measured. It wasn't long after that that we had the pencil pine removed - of course. :D
When working with horses there was a magnificent chestnut TB filly, by the then top sire, killed by snake bite . I'd gone out to a farm to check on the horses and when she didn't come with them and I could see a body my heart just sank. For the fact that so many animals die that way, I hate them, and yet I still do admire their beauty. Wish we had harmless ones. My dogs automatically sense how dangerous the Browns are by the way, ditto for my cats.

MyBirdIsEvil
April 20th, 2010, 12:24 PM
Corn snakes are not poisonous. They are commonly kept as pets and very docile. Native to the southern U.S.

The only poisonous snakes we have, other than the coral snake (which is rarely seen), are pit vipers, like the cottonmouth I posted, copperhead, and rattlesnakes.

DoubleRR
April 20th, 2010, 12:55 PM
Is too bad that Australia has so many poisonous snakes--but I guess there is a reason for them. Yes, corns are very commonly kept as pets and bred to be a vast range of colors. Delilah is a common color for those found in the southeastern area of the US. She is about 4th generation captive bred.

Corns eat rodents and whatever mouse sized meal they can catch--nestlings, lizards etc. They are constrictors, so catch and squeeze the breath out of their prey to kill--then swallow whole. I do not believe in feeding live prey, so have a supply of frozen whole mice and thaw one every 10 days or so for her meal. She still "kills" it when you dangle it in front of her, which entertains kids who visit, but no mouse suffers, and the snake doesn't get bitten during the scuffle--a common problem for those who think putting a live rodent in the habitat is a good idea.

There are a great many pet snakes in north america--mostly ball pythons, corns and other small constrictors--but when one goes to the Reptile shows one sees a number of much larger species [ some poisonous ], among the many other reptilian groups. I personally just love my snake's beauty, and do not wish to have any pet I cannot handle. Well, excepting the fish, :)

hazelrunpack
April 20th, 2010, 03:10 PM
Delilah is beautiful, DoubleRR! :flirt: How big a habitat do you need for a 55-inch snake?

ancientgirl
April 20th, 2010, 03:13 PM
Beautiful snakes, but I'd be running in the opposite direction of any snake with a flattening head like that.:laughing:

hazelrunpack
April 20th, 2010, 03:15 PM
I have to say that if it had flared its hood like that and come toward me, I would probably have been running away, too! :laughing:

DoubleRR
April 20th, 2010, 03:25 PM
Delilah is beautiful, DoubleRR! :flirt: How big a habitat do you need for a 55-inch snake?
Thank you! She does fine in an exo terra #2610.
http://www.exo-terra.com/en/products/glass_terrarium.php

Large water dish to submerge in and freshened every second day for drinking, aspen chips to slither through, half circles of tree bark to hide under, a nice warm undertank heater in one corner, and a nice fake rock hide with moist moss inside. Twisted fake vine to crawl up and through. I don't feed her in there--she is taken out and put into a nice clear 18" square plastic bin to eat--no chance of swallowing a wood chip, and she equates handling with both feeding and just seeing new things, so is always ready to be taken out of her cage.
One of the nicest things about her--she eats once and poops/pees [is together] once every 10 days to two weeks. :angel:

hazelrunpack
April 20th, 2010, 03:36 PM
That sounds like a little piece of snake heaven! :cloud9: Love the poop patrol aspect of it, too--only once every 10 to 14 days :laughing:

chico2
April 20th, 2010, 05:32 PM
Wow,all these beautiful snakes,especially Delilah..
I have never seen a snake except in capture,I touched one once and was surprised at how soft it was.
I have also seen shows from Australia about the famous deadly Brown snake.

I probably would only watch a snake from a distance,the Hognosed one looks beautiful Hazel..
A snake like any other creature one this earth,has a purpose and a right to live in peace.

hazelrunpack
April 20th, 2010, 06:47 PM
I checked the blind carefully for red squirrels and/or snakes this morning before I entered it. :o :laughing:

Snakes really are fascinating to watch, chico! And most of them (around here, anyway) are shy and retiring. I'm feeling pretty privileged to have seen this beauty!

Goldfields
April 20th, 2010, 09:03 PM
DoubleRR, I suppose because so many of our snakes aren't constrictors, they'd need venom. Someone mentioned Copperheads. I wonder if it's the same one we have here? I've had a couple of close shaves with them. I was walking backwards out from under a loft, dragging a hose(this was at a stud I worked at), and as I backed across the gravel in front of the stables I turned my head to see where to step up onto the path, and there was a copperhead, reared up ready to strike! Just one more step I reckon. Another time I was loading hay onto the tractor and found I'd picked up a bale with a copperhead coiled up on top of it, so it was in between my hands as I held it. I just quietly put it down. LOL. Because I'm not scared of them, one time when walking the boss's two Afghan Hounds with another girl along beside a channel, when my dog stepped over something, I looked, saw it was a red bellied black and stepped over it too, telling my co-worker to look out for the snake. Well, no kidding, for the rest of the walk she was nearly walking in MY shoes.:laughing: :laughing: Poor thing, I shouldn't laugh when I will admit to my own fear, and that's big hairy Huntsman spiders. I'd rather get bitten by a dog, bitten or kicked by a horse, than have a big spider get on me. LOL.
Getting back to our Browns. They don't seem to have to have much excuse to bite. If humans or stock stand on them, bail them up, or get between them and where they are going, fair enough, but a friend, when young, was just quietly sitting on a stool, milking a cow , and he got bitten.
DoubleRR, have you any idea how old Delilah is, or the age they can live till? I imagine that huge Brown I saw would be a very old snake.

MyBirdIsEvil
April 20th, 2010, 09:43 PM
Goldfields, I think they're different copperheads.

This is what ours looks like: http://www.marietta.edu/~biol/biomes/images/deciduous/copperheads_5968.jpg

When I searched Australian Copperhead another snake came up, and it didn't appear to be a pit viper.

Notice the triangular head and holes in front of the eyes (the pits), in the U.S. version. They are a pit viper like all but one of our venomous snakes (The Coral Snake) (http://content.artofmanliness.com/uploads/2008/07/coral-snake.jpg)
Coral snakes look very similar to a native scarlet king snake (http://www.theslowbleed.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/04/scarlet.jpg) and milk snake (http://www.reptilesweb.com/images/stories/Snake/pueblan-milksnake-2.jpg), which are non venomous and more common.

Pit vipers also have slanted eyes. The eyes in the first pic were apparently dilated for some reason or another. http://www.hiltonpond.org/images/Copperhead02.jpg

hazelrunpack
April 20th, 2010, 09:48 PM
Both that copperhead and the king snake are absolutely breathtakingly gorgeous, MBIE! :flirt:

MyBirdIsEvil
April 20th, 2010, 09:59 PM
A lot of king snakes tend to be pretty striking (that milk snake is also a king snake).

They also tend to be very docile and generally easy to care for, therefore common pets.

I've owned all kinds of snakes and my mexican king snake (shiny black with white specs) was one of my favorites. He liked to go in the aquarium. He'd sink under the water and sit with his tail wrapped around a decoration and watch the fish. Never tried to eat any though.

hazelrunpack
April 20th, 2010, 10:02 PM
Are Mexican King Snakes usually water critters? Must have been fun to watch him watching the fish! :laughing:

Goldfields
April 20th, 2010, 10:19 PM
Oh, no, our Copperhead is nothing like yours, what a fabulous looking snake that one is. The coral snake doesn't feel a need for camouflage, does it? Ours have to be camouflaged or the kookaburras will get them. Those 3 snakes you mentioned are very alike, I mean amazingly so. Does it mean they are related? It's such a strange colour combination too.

MyBirdIsEvil
April 20th, 2010, 11:14 PM
Are Mexican King Snakes usually water critters? Must have been fun to watch him watching the fish! :laughing:

They generally like to swim I think. I've seen them on nature shows swimming around in rivers and stuff. They will eat aquatic critters such as frogs and get in the water to cool offs or help molt.

Actually a lot of snakes will swim when it's hot out. I've commonly seen black rat snakes swimming around in the water, as well as racers and a lot of other species.
King snakes do seem to be more water oriented than some others though.

The coral snake doesn't feel a need for camouflage, does it? Ours have to be camouflaged or the kookaburras will get them. Those 3 snakes you mentioned are very alike, I mean amazingly so. Does it mean they are related? It's such a strange colour combination too.

It provides more camouflage than you'd think. When the banding is mixed in with various plants they're pretty hard to spot. They tend to hang low to the ground and not out in the open much. They are very elusive. (That goes for both the coral and king snakes). If they are spotted though the colorful pattern may alert predators to the fact that they are venomous.

The coral and king snakes are not related. It is possible that the kings are colored like a coral snake in order to confuse predators into thinking they're venomous.

DoubleRR
April 20th, 2010, 11:35 PM
In answer to your question, Goldfields, Delilah is 6 yrs of age. With good care, and no unforeseen problems she should have several more years to go. They can live to past 20 yrs, the average is between 10 and 15.

MyBirdIsEvil
April 20th, 2010, 11:54 PM
Our red rat snake lived 11 years until some idiot left the door to the cage ajar and he escaped :mad:. The person did not have permission to be in there, and apparently when the snake moved they freaked out and didn't shut the door all the way. :mad: We had him since he was a hatchling.

Apparently one of my dad's friends found him dead a couple of years later, outside. I'm surprised he even lived that long in southern Ohio, which is not part of their natural territory.

Actually he had escaped once before, years before that, and luckily someone a couple of blocks away that liked snakes found him in the street and took him in :angel:. They didn't know what species he was but knew he wasn't native to that area so figured he was a pet. One of our friends was at the persons house and remembered our red snake was missing and called us and it ended up being him. He had a fat belly and had obviously been hunting while he was out :shrug:.

Goldfields
April 21st, 2010, 01:27 AM
Gee, DoubleRR, that's not long, is it? I thought it might be double that age span, but then I haven't seen their growth rate.
Wonder why our deadliest snakes here aren't out to alert predators that they are venemous? They are such drab colours that they blend in. One of those little mysteries of nature.

DoubleRR
April 21st, 2010, 09:50 AM
O wow MyBirdIsEvil--I might be a little ballistic if someone let her out. She would survive summer here if not run over--but not winter unless she found a somewhat heated space. Her little home has a tricky locking mechanism that kids cannot easily see, which is nice, and is attractive enough to be part of the kitchen cupboards--end of the counter has a space under that is just right for her habitat to fit into--under where the phone stand is. :)

Hehehe Don't come to my house if you have an overwhelming fear of snakes--you might trip over the dachshund or a cat and fall into the Rhodesian in an effort to escape while the budgie flew around your head yelling at you--even my parrot fish will bash against the top of his aquarium to be involved in a ruckus. :eek:

hazelrunpack
April 21st, 2010, 10:14 AM
Hehehe Don't come to my house if you have an overwhelming fear of snakes--you might trip over the dachshund or a cat and fall into the Rhodesian in an effort to escape while the budgie flew around your head yelling at you--even my parrot fish will bash against the top of his aquarium to be involved in a ruckus. :eek:
:laughing: One big happy family! :cloud9:

That's sad about your red rat snake, MBIE :candle: :grouphug:

Gail P
April 23rd, 2010, 11:13 PM
Lots of great snake pictures :thumbs up Here are some of a big hognose that was hanging around my house a couple of years ago. First really big one I'd seen here, though usually every year I see young ones, (which is a really good sign, since they're one of the "species at risk")

Hazel, I don't know if you have the same snakes there as I do, but around here snakes with orange/red bellies are either northern redbelly snakes or ringneck snakes. Both are smallish snakes and the redbelly is brown with a creamy spot on each side of it's neck and it can have darker brown stripes running the length of the body, like the picture you posted (not sure if that was what you referred to as a brown garter snake, can't see if that one has a red/orange belly or not). The ringneck snake is slate gray with a creamy ring around it's neck.

Gail P
April 23rd, 2010, 11:22 PM
I forgot to post one that showed the full size of the snake. Oh, btw, the young ones usually do have a much more vibrant pattern, but the pattern seems to fade as they get bigger/older.

hazelrunpack
April 24th, 2010, 12:01 AM
Cool pics, Gail!!!! That looks like a western hognose? The eastern hognose is a little different, not so heavy in the body and not so upturned a nose :D

The brown snake I showed is slightly lighter on the belly but is for sure a brown (not a garter). Definitely not an orange belly...but I think we have northern orange-bellied snakes here. I've just not seen one for ages. :o

Goldfields
April 24th, 2010, 12:33 AM
Wonderful photo's, Gail. Very impressive.

NoahGrey
April 24th, 2010, 02:19 PM
Thanks for the pictures. I too love snakes. I remember while out on a call, this family from India (who had just moved to Canada) wanted me to kill this garter snake. I told them that I wouldn't be doing that. Geesh..I was there for about 40 mins trying to get it through their heads, that they couldn't just kill it and to LEAVE a alone. I left shaking my head. It's sad that we mistreat what we are afraid of, instead of educating ourselves.

Gail P
May 3rd, 2010, 12:59 PM
Cool pics, Gail!!!! That looks like a western hognose? The eastern hognose is a little different, not so heavy in the body and not so upturned a nose :D

We only have the eastern ones here (this is just a very big one) and they're on the list of species at risk, along with several other snakes, turtles and other species. Around my house seems to be a hotspot for some of those species though, every year we see hognose snakes, Blanding's turtles and a couple of times I've seen 5-lined skinks as well.

Wonderful photo's, Gail. Very impressive.

Thanks! I'm not really much of a photographer but once in a while I get a lucky shot. This snake wasn't in a big hurry to leave so I laid down on my belly in front of it for some of these shots.

hazelrunpack
May 3rd, 2010, 02:48 PM
Wow, Gail! Your eastern hognose looks really different than ours! You have quite the assortment of reptiles there! :D We have Blanding's turtles near here but they're on the threatened list. :(

chico2
May 3rd, 2010, 05:02 PM
Gail,beautiful snake,I did not even know we have those in Ontario.
If I saw it,I'd probably think it's a Cobra:laughing:

Gail P
May 4th, 2010, 12:19 AM
Gail,beautiful snake,I did not even know we have those in Ontario.
If I saw it,I'd probably think it's a Cobra:laughing:

They range throughout Ontario but are not particularly common in most areas. Like several of our reptiles they are listed as "at risk" and sitings of them should be reported to the MNR.

We don't however have any cobras in Ontario ;)

TwinTails
June 2nd, 2010, 09:23 PM
I know this is an older post, but I wanted to point out that Eastern Hog Nose Snakes are venomous - they are rear-fanged snakes, and while their venom is not considered toxic/harmful to humans, they still can bite and release their venom (one guy I knew did a trial to find out what would happen if the venom was allowed to swell in his blood, he simply had a horrible engorged thumb [where the HN had clamped down on for over 20 mins], but that was about it).

hazelrunpack
June 2nd, 2010, 10:19 PM
If he really wanted to test a colubrid's venom, he should have done it at feeding time, since they seem to release the venom when catching prey rather than in defense :D But the only hognose snakes I've handled have been so small that even if they wanted to bite me they likely couldn't. I have yet to have any of them even try. They're just little :angel:s.

The garter snakes on the other hand... :eek: :laughing: Much more likely to defend themselves by biting. :D

TwinTails
June 2nd, 2010, 10:32 PM
I do believe it was a feeding time test. I can't remember exactly, as this was a few years back when we had our pet store. But I agree, they are indeed awesome snakes :D I love the garters too, always trying to be mean :P I've never been bitten by one, but musked on a few times :yuck:

MyBirdIsEvil
June 2nd, 2010, 10:34 PM
I know this is an older post, but I wanted to point out that Eastern Hog Nose Snakes are venomous - they are rear-fanged snakes, and while their venom is not considered toxic/harmful to humans, they still can bite and release their venom (one guy I knew did a trial to find out what would happen if the venom was allowed to swell in his blood, he simply had a horrible engorged thumb [where the HN had clamped down on for over 20 mins], but that was about it).

I think I addressed this in an earlier post.

They are thought to POSSIBLY carry a mild venom, but researchers aren't in agreement about it. Their saliva is somewhat toxic to small prey, but this doesn't necessarily make them venomous. There is disagreement as to whether the rear fangs actually deliver any venom, and I haven't been able to find anything on what TYPE of venom it may be.
It's scientific semantics of sorts. But science is a very technical thing and definitions must be kept accurate, so that's not surprising.

The reaction you described doesn't prove the presence of venom, since most snakes, if you allowed them to clamp on you for 20 mins, would cause the reaction described. And actually some people will have that reaction to almost any snake saliva when bitten.

I'm not saying they are or are not venomous, but I don't think you can accurately proclaim that they are definitely venomous since there's quite a bit of disagreement between researchers as to whether they actually are. :)

Gail P
June 2nd, 2010, 10:35 PM
I know this is an older post, but I wanted to point out that Eastern Hog Nose Snakes are venomous - they are rear-fanged snakes, and while their venom is not considered toxic/harmful to humans, they still can bite and release their venom (one guy I knew did a trial to find out what would happen if the venom was allowed to swell in his blood, he simply had a horrible engorged thumb [where the HN had clamped down on for over 20 mins], but that was about it).

The Eastern Hog-nosed Snake is not considered to be venomous, and to suggest otherwise is to further endanger it. Too many people already kill them out of fear because with their heavy build and threatening displays they are mistaken for a more dangerous kind of snake. A nickname for them is "puff adder" although they are in no way related to adders, which are a type of pit viper. Maybe the guy who did the "trial" got an infection, or reacted in some other way? The Massassauga Rattler is the only venomous snake found in Ontario. Here is some more info on the Eastern Hog-nosed Snake:

Eastern Hog-nosed Snake

Features: The Eastern Hog-nosed snake (Heterodon platirhinos) is sometimes mistaken for a cobra because when it is threatened it rears back and flattens its neck out. It may strike out if harassed but rarely bites, and it is non-venomous. It gets its common name from long scales on its nose which give it an upturned snout. Old individuals can be one metre long and their bodies are thick. They prefer sandy, well-drained habitats such as beaches and dry woods because this is where they lay their eggs in burrows and where they hibernate. But they must have access to wet areas such as swamps to hunt frogs, toads and lizards.

Status: Threatened Provincially and Nationally

Range: The species is widespread south of the Great Lakes and east of the Rockies, but it is not common anywhere. In Ontario, it is found in southern and central Ontario as far north as Lake Nipissing. Range Maps

Threats: The species is at the northern limits of its range in Ontario and was likely never common here. Historic declines were probably due to loss of habitat from development and farming, and persecution by people. These factors continue as threats today and slow recovery of the species in Ontario.

Protection: Under Ontario's Endangered Species Act 2007, it is illegal to harass, capture, buy, sell, possess, or kill the Eastern Hog-nosed Snake. This species is also protected under Ontario's Fish and Wildlife Conservation Act. Some populations in Ontario are on public land such as provincial parks where they receive habitat protection. Education on this harmless species is important, and has paid off in Pinery Provincial Park where staff have implemented a public education program and report that fewer snakes are being killed by visitors.

Text Sources: Schueler 1996

Last Modified Date: October 2008

hazelrunpack
June 2nd, 2010, 10:36 PM
I do believe it was a feeding time test. I can't remember exactly, as this was a few years back when we had our pet store. But I agree, they are indeed awesome snakes I love the garters too, always trying to be mean :P I've never been bitten by one, but musked on a few times

I missed my target when catching a foot-long garter last year trying save it from Curious Cole and gave it too much neck to work with. It swung back and nailed me pretty good on the hand. Lots and lots and lots of little teeth! :o Not much in the way of marks, though--tiny little pin-pricks. :D

TwinTails
June 2nd, 2010, 10:38 PM
WoW :eek: My source is seriously outdated! Thank you for the clarification! I honestly did not know that, I had always known them to be "rear-fanged venomous" and always considered them "hots" (though considerably less than Cobras, etc). Thank you again for clarifying this for both myself and anyone else reading ;)

hazelrunpack
June 2nd, 2010, 10:41 PM
As for venom in colubrids, I remember reading somewhere, though I can't remember where, that there have been occasional cases of children getting bit while feeding their snakes that resulted in swelling of the hand and arm and the kids feeling ill--all of which points to some sort of substance being secreted by the snake, whether it be venom or just something that causes some sort of an allergic reaction. I've never seen any study that proved the venom theory or analyzed the substance, though :shrug:

TwinTails
June 2nd, 2010, 10:45 PM
I wish I had known all of this years ago ;) I was offered a trio of breeding HN, very fancy colors (high red coloration, can't recall the name right now, not "albino"). I refused, thinking they were hots :frustrated: Well at least now I know :rolleyes:

MyBirdIsEvil
June 2nd, 2010, 10:56 PM
As for venom in colubrids, I remember reading somewhere, though I can't remember where, that there have been occasional cases of children getting bit while feeding their snakes that resulted in swelling of the hand and arm and the kids feeling ill--all of which points to some sort of substance being secreted by the snake, whether it be venom or just something that causes some sort of an allergic reaction. I've never seen any study that proved the venom theory or analyzed the substance, though :shrug:

Considering how few cases there must be of that, I'd assume it's more likely to be an allergic reaction to the saliva.
The other option is that a bacterial infection was present after the bite, which could definitely cause the symptoms described.

I wish I had known all of this years ago I was offered a trio of breeding HN, very fancy colors (high red coloration, can't recall the name right now, not "albino"). I refused, thinking they were hots Well at least now I know

Yup, they're harmless. Not only that, but very docile and easy to keep. :)

hazelrunpack
June 2nd, 2010, 11:00 PM
As I recall, they ruled out infection for some reason (which my feeble memory hasn't retained :laughing:), maybe because the reaction was so fast? I wish I could remember where I read it in the first place :o

My memory is like a rusty sieve...the big particles stick to the rust but the details fall through :laughing:

Gail P
June 25th, 2010, 11:34 PM
Here's a Milksnake that was caught by the tail under my front door threshold today. It must have somehow gotten inside the threshold, or behind some siding and maybe when we were going in and out it got it's tail pinched. At first it looked like it's tail was caught in the door but when I opened the door to let it out I realized that it was under the threshold, pinched between some trim and siding. Seemed to be no worse for wear when I released it. It's another one of the species at risk that are being tracked so I reported the sighting.

TwinTails
June 25th, 2010, 11:38 PM
Beautiful Gail! Absolutely gorgeous :D

Gail P
June 26th, 2010, 01:06 AM
I took some other shots that should have turned out better but when my daughter got the camera out of the case for me she accidentally turned the dial so it wasn't on the right setting and I didn't realize that until after I had let the snake go. Most of the pictures turned out fuzzy. These were the best I got.

This snake was about 18" or so. A few weeks ago I had a much bigger one in my basement. Unfortunately it was caught (and killed) in a mousetrap. It was 28"-29" and was more red than brown coloured. It was so vibrant it must have just shed it's skin.

TwinTails
June 26th, 2010, 01:16 AM
Oh wow =D I miss having snakes around ^^ But they are gorgeous, aren't they!

chico2
June 26th, 2010, 08:34 AM
Gail,what a beauty,I am glad you told us how long he is,in the pics it looks like he could be 10feet long:laughing:
I think snakes are wonderful creatures,but I am not sure how I would react with one at my front-door,I certainly would not kill one,probably just watch it slither away,more of afraid of me than I of him.

hazelrunpack
June 26th, 2010, 10:20 AM
That's a beautiful snake, Gail! :cloud9: Thanks for sharing! I'm glad it survived its encounter none the worse for wear. I'd love to know how it got into that predicament, though.

Gail P
June 26th, 2010, 12:10 PM
That's a beautiful snake, Gail! :cloud9: Thanks for sharing! I'm glad it survived its encounter none the worse for wear. I'd love to know how it got into that predicament, though.

They spend most of the daytime hiding and are known for entering farm buildings etc. because they eat mice. My guess is that it found a crack to get in and was resting there somewhere and we disturbed it going in and out the door. Probably it tried to leave and got pinched when someone stepped on the threshold. Good thing I'm not afraid of snakes, there was no way to get it loose without handling it.