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threatened and/or endangered

Mississippi Green Water Snake Nerodia cyclopion


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Mississippi Green Water Snake
credit: Nick Scobel/CCSA

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Family: Colubridae, Colubrid Snakes view all from this family

Description Having one or more small scales under the eye, giving the appearance of a ring of small plates around the eye. Heavy-bodied snakes are dark green, olive, or brown dorsally. Underside yellowish on the anterior third, and the on remainder they are dark brown with yellow or white semicircles.

Dimensions 76.2-127cm. (30-50")

Warning All water snakes in the genus Nerodia will bite if harassed. Their bite is not venomous. When captured, Mississippi Green Water Snakes will bite or smear their captors with musk, but seem more reluctant to do so than most water snakes. Instead, they often regurgitate their last meal and attempt to flee.

Subspecies Green - Dark belly with light spots.
Florida Green - light underside. South Carolina, Florida and Alabama.

Breeding Breeds March-April. 4-101 young, 22-27cm (8 3/4-10 3/4") long, born June-August.

Habitat Marshes, swamps, canals, ponds, bayous, estuaries.

Range Florida panhandle to Alabama, Texas, Louisiana, Arkansas and Illinois.

Discussion Diurnal. Basks on logs, branches over water. Nonvenomous.