I recently realized that we haven’t taken the time to explore the slithery, snake world in a while. Therefore, I thought we could take a trip to the Southeastern United States to learn about a non-venomous, semi-aquatic snake known simply as the Mud Snake. Interestingly enough, these snakes are sometimes referred to as “Hoop Snakes” due to an age-old myth that they would bite their tails, making a hoop, and roll after people. Obviously, this is false but a part of me wishes this were true because how cool would it be if a snake started rolling after you? I guess we should keep the ball rolling with today’s Wild Fact and jump into a few more details.
Easy to Identify
The Mud Snake is a rather large reptile with the record holder being over 2 m (6.5 feet) long. They are pretty easy to distinguish has their back consists of smooth, glossy, black scales with reddish-pink bars coming up their sides from their stomach. They also have very pointed tails, which they often use to prod their prey. This behaviour has earned them the nick-name, “Stinging Snake”….but, thankfully, they don’t actually sting you.
A Dirty Life
As you may have guessed the Mud Snake can be found in muddy areas such as ditches, swamps and the vegetated areas surrounding lakes and ponds. While slithering through these areas, they are typically on the lookout for a variety of prey species, including salamanders, frogs and even fish. If you happen to be an amphibian or fish living in Southeastern United States, I suggest looking over your shoulder right now for a hungry Mud Snake.
Although, this snake is fairly common, we don’t know a great deal about them, as they tend to stay away from humans. I am not sure if this is on purpose or not. It is most likely due to the fact that they are nocturnal and have a tendency to hide in dense vegetation and under debris. If you do capture one of these large snakes, they won’t typically bite you. Although they will prod you with their sharp tail, which does absolutely nothing….other than frustrate the Mud Snake since they have no effective defence mechanism against humans.