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Old 06-19-2011, 5:37 PM
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Default Unknown snake in south-eastern NC. Can anyone identify?

Does anyone recognize this snake? I cant find it ANYWHERE on the internet as a snake native to NC. Doesnt even resemble any snakes on the websites. No rattler, didnt have a triangular shaped head, was not aggressive, 2.5 - 3ft long, medium thick build. Found in my backyard. I live in Wilmington, NC.

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Old 06-19-2011, 6:56 PM
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Snakes of North Carolina

I saw a couple that looked like it. I hope you didn't kill it... I like snakes. They keep the rest of the critters in check.
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Old 06-19-2011, 7:07 PM
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thank you rescue161 for the reply. i searched that site you sent me for a couple hours the other day tediously (sp?) and couldnt find a 100% match. there was a couple that had the same color, but not the same body type, or same head shape. i even emailed the administrator of that website with a photo in asking for help in identification. i also emailed the NC wildlife commission with a photo for help in identification. hopefully i'll get a reply. sadly yes, i killed it, because there are kids who play in the yard to my left, and kids who play in the yard to my right, and i didnt want them possibly being bitten by a venemous snake (if it was so).... so i didnt take the chance. a human life is more valuable than a small reptile to me. thanks again, and if i get a reply from the emails i sent out, i will post it here with the response.
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Old 06-19-2011, 7:15 PM
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Ah, no worries. I've killed snakes before too, and out of all of the ones I killed only one was an Eastern Diamondback rattlesnake. I just thought the others were poisonous at the time. The last snake a ran in to was in Maryland. I heard a bunch of kids outside yelling and screaming, so I went out. They were chasing a long black snake (trying to kill it). I told them to stop and I grabbed it. After it calmed down, I put it on my shoulders and wrapped around my arms (it was about 5 feet long). I guess it enjoyed relaxing and not running for its life...lol

To the kids surprize, I let it go under my house, as I had a mouse problem at the time. Hey, no more mice...lol
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Old 06-19-2011, 7:18 PM
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yeah actually yesterday i encountered a 5 foot black snake in the same exact place as the snake in question. and i let him go cause i knew the species. he was way more aggressive though lol, rattling his tail in the leaves and bowing up at me.
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Old 06-19-2011, 8:07 PM
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The closest to the length, pattern and location I can find in my books is an Eastern Pygmy Rattler. If you still have the body, carefully open the mouth and see if it has fangs. In another handbook, a good candidate is the Northern Pine snake, but they attain much longer lengths.

Otherwise it may be someones exotic constrictor that has escaped, similar to a ball python or similar.

A dead ringer for it is a fox snake, but the location for it is nowhere near Wilmington, not to say it couldn't be a transplant.

Last edited by barry008; 06-19-2011 at 8:19 PM..
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Old 06-19-2011, 8:24 PM
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thanks barry008 for the reply. i initially thought that as well; visually it looks very similar. i got a reply from a herpitologist from the website that rescue161 posted up above, and they said it was a hognose snake. i killed one of those last year (and took a pic - this was in 2010 ) for the same fear of it being poisinous and researched and found out that it was a hognose. here is the pic from last year 2010 of the hognose snake. it was a little more mature, about 3.5 feet long and had the very distinctive upwards flare of its nose. the snake i killed a couple days ago didnt have that distinctive feature, but upon further examination, the pic from last year, if i put my hand across the lower half of its body, i can see the resemblance of the last half of its body.
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Old 06-19-2011, 8:34 PM
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Do you still have the snake? I need to see the head and belly. That would clinch it, plus if it has fangs, pygmy rattler (which has 1 maybe 2 very very small rattles) or a Northern copperhead.

Otherwise,
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Old 06-19-2011, 8:51 PM
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the snake was a "brown phase hognose" snake. Eastern Hognose Snake - North Carolina look for that specific pattern on the page. thanks everyone for the replies and interest!!!! im sad to admit i killed a harmless snake. but like i said, better safe than sorry. id rather feel guilty for killing a harmless snake than feel guilty for not killing a questionable snake who might bite a harmless kid.
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Old 06-20-2011, 3:45 PM
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Darn... They make good pets, too.
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