2017 nj - eastern hognose snake aka heterodon platirhinos
unofficially a new jersey species of special concern because habitat loss and population declines have been caused by illegal collection, road mortality and direct killing. in addition, this species feeds on toads and frogs, whose numbers are also in decline.
hobbies include digging up toads, playing dead, and long slithers on the beach💋
Eastern Hognose Snake (Heterodon platirhinos) is a very unique species that inhabits a large portion of the eastern United States, as well as a large amount of the midwestern states. On average, adult eastern hognose snakes range between 18 and 30 inches long. These snakes prefer habitats that consist of loose soil (primarily sand). This includes woodlands with sandy soil, sand prairies, and coastal areas. These snakes are primarily observed in the spring and fall when the temperatures are much cooler. This species can also be seen quite often in the warmer months such as June and July when they begin to lay their eggs. Eggs are incubated for nearly two months before they hatch in August and early September. This species feeds primarily of frogs and toads, but have been observed eating small mammals. Eastern hognose snakes are docile animals that bluff strike and feign death to discourage potential predation against them. When there is a predator encounter, the snake will inflate its body and neck, coil with its head elevated and often turned sideways, hiss by rapidly expelling air from the lungs, and strike with mouth gaped or closed. If this fails, the snake will often gape its mouth, rotate its spine, flip over, and play dead. #HognoseSnake#EasternHognoseSnake#Heterodon#heterodonplatirhinos#Platirhinos
This is an Eastern hognose snake (Heterodon platirhinos). One of my favorite natives, they are known for their defensive antics. These include puffing up, spreading the skin around their necks, hissing, and even playing dead. They are dietary specialists feeding exclusively on amphibians. •
Hogtober is over, but fingers crossed I *might* see just one more of these this year!
This guy was slithering across the road so quickly we originally mistook him for a racer, until we braked and saw him begin to curl and flatten his head. Needless to say, we were pleased to be wrong.
I've seen about 20 eastern hognoses now, and this was the most melanistic one I've seen yet. Kameron was a bit disappointed in how excited I was to see this color phase, but I guess I can make up for it by showing him some more creams, reds, oranges, and yellows! 😉
My 2016 melanistic female is huge, every time I open the tub she comes chasing my finger like it's a mouse. She will definitely be ready for breeding in the spring. I can't wait to see what happens when I put her with my yellow male!
Since there isn't really much of a chance to find a western hog when it is this cold my Hogtober mainly consists of my collection in my reptile room. I could always have more of these weirdos. They are a huge pain but definitely a favorite of mine!