Hognose Snake

Miss Piggy

Hognose Snake

Place of Birth:

North America: The western hognose snake ranges from south- central Canada, south to southeast Arizona, New Mexico, and Texas, southward into San Luis Potosí, Mexico.

Eating Habits:

In the wild, they feed predominately on amphibians, such as large and medium-sized tree frogs, as well as small or medium-sized toads and small lizards. They will also occasionally eat rodents.

Quick Facts:

Scientific Name Heterodon nasicus
Size Males are smaller than females, with lengths rarely exceeding 20 inches. Females occasionally approach 3 feet.
Color Dark blotches extend down the pale brown or yellowish back with 2 rows of smaller, alternating blotches on the sides.
Lifespan They can live 20 years or more in captivity.
Eco Status Least ConcernConversion of prairie habitat to agricultural use has caused local declines, but overall it is not significantly threatened.


This snake prefers scrubby, flat prairie areas with loose, sandy soil suitable for burrowing. They occupy burrows or dig into soil, and less often are found under rocks or debris, during periods of inactivity.

Animal’s Behaviour

Western Hognoseare relatively small, stout bodies snake. Their color and pattern is highly variable based on the subspecies, although most specimens appear much like the infamous rattlesnake. It is typically a docile snake (though known to be highly aggressive in some individuals). If threatened (or perceiving a threat), it may flatten its neck (much like a cobra), hiss, and make mock strikes if harassed. Occasionally, if stressed enough, it even plays dead. Not being a true constrictor, the Western Hognose bites and chews its food, driving the rear fangs into the prey as a way of introducing the saliva/”venom” into the bloodstream in order to incapacitate its meal. As many as 39 eggs are laid in the early summer, hatching occurs in as little as 50 days. Hatchlings are similar to adults in appearance and are about 17 to 20 centimeters total length. Eggs are smooth and elongate (usually 26 to 38 millimeters by 14 to 23 millimeters in length and breadth).