Reptiles And Amphibians

Reptile Facts Western Hognose Snake

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Snakes seem to be either feared or loved by all human beings. Whether the thought of their slithering bodies excites a person, or scares a person, everyone must admit these beings are an amazing addition to the wildlife of the world.

The Western Hognose Snake is one of these intriguing creatures. It is recognized by many names, including: blowing adder, blowing viper, blow snake, bluffer, common western hog-nosed viper, hog-nosed snake, faux viper, North American long-nosed snake, prairie hog-nosed snake, puff adder, sand viper, spoonbill snake, spreadhead snake, spreading adder, spreading viper, Texas hog-nosed snake, Texas rooter, western spreading adder, western hog-nosed adder, plains hog-nosed snake, and western hog-nosed snake. Heterodon nasicus is the binomal name for this reptile.

Visually, the snake is similar to some venomous vipers, hence the plethra of names denoting this fact, such as "bluffer." It is a light sandy brown color, with darker brown and gray portions on its skin like the Eastern Hognose, however, their underbelly skin does not vary in color as much as the Eastern Hognose Snakes' do. The belly of the Western Hognose is typically accented by yellow and black areas, and in some cases orange. With the colors of a dangerous snake, the Western Hognose manages to be left alone by humans and predators, and is not in any danger of extinction, according to its conservation status.

The Western Hognose Snake is actually rear-fanged venomous, and therefore poses no threats to humans. It does not tend to bite, even as a defense mechanism, unless it is feeding. The only time the Western Hognose is prone to biting in defense is when it is shedding its skin, and becomes temporarily blind. The snake is not only non-threatening from its low-attack rate, but also for its small size. Adult Western Hognose Snakes grow to be between 15 and 33 inches in length, with females being slightly larger than males on average. They are thick in gerth, and unlike most snakes, they do not have a rather pointed nose, but an upturned, snout-looking nose, from which they are named. This nose aids in their digging into the earth.

The Western Hognose is able to live in a variety of environments. It can dwell anywhere from short grass to prairie grasslands to rocky, semi-arid areas. It can be found anywhere from southwestern Canada, to northern Mexico. This is part of the reason the population of Western Hognose Snakes remains high. Another reason the snake is able to keep its population high is its ability to reproduce and become sexually mature within two years. The Western Hognose females can lay between 4 and 23 eggs in between July and August. When the hatchlings are born, they are between 6 and 7.5 inches long.

With all of these ways to keep the species alive, people can expect to see the Western Hognose around from quite some time. The snakes have even evolved to be able to play dead to escape predators. They are not only an amazing creature physically, but skillfully


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