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Heterodon nasicus BAIRD & GIRARD, 1852

IUCN Red List - Heterodon nasicus - Least Concern, LC

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Higher TaxaColubridae (Dipsadinae), Colubroidea, Caenophidia, Alethinophidia, Serpentes, Squamata (snakes) 
Common NamesE: Western Hognose Snake, Plains Hognose Snake
G: Westliche Hakennasennatter (Hakennatter) 
SynonymHeterodon nasicus BAIRD & GIRARD 1852
Heterodon nasicus — BAIRD & GIRARD 1853: 61
Heterodon simus var. nasicus — GARMAN 1884: 77
Heterodon nasicus — STEBBINS 1985: 176
Heterodon nasicus — CONANT & COLLINS 1991: 176
Heterodon nasicus — LINER 1994
Heterodon nasicus nasicus — TENNANT & BARTLETT 2000: 353
Heterodon nasicus nasicus — COLLINS & TAGGART 2009
Heterodon nasicus — CROTHER et al. 2012
Heterodon nasicus — WALLACH et al. 2014: 329 
DistributionCanada (Manitoba, Alberta, Saskatchewan),
USA (Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, Nebraska, E Wyoming, Illinois, E Colorado, New Mexico, Kansas, Oklahoma, Texas, W Minnesota, New Mexico)

Type locality: “Texas”; Restricted to Rio Grande, approx. 19 air miles (30.6 km) downstream from Eagle Pass, Maverick County, Texas, by WEBB & ECKERMAN (1998). Map legend:
TDWG region - Region according to the TDWG standard, not a precise distribution map.

NOTE: TDWG regions are generated automatically from the text in the distribution field and not in every cases it works well. We are working on it.
TypesHolotype: USNM
Neotype: USNM 1249 
CommentDistribution: Erroneously reported from Arkansas [HR 7: 123; HR 32: 59]. Not corrected for removal of subspecies. Not in Mexico where it replaced by H. kennerlyi, formerly a subspecies of H. nasicus. See map in Walley & Eckerman 1999.

Subspecies: The subspecies of H. nasicus seem to represent arbitrarily delimited sections of continuous variation (EDGREN 1952, cited in CROTHER 2000). However, SMITH et al. suggested to elevate Heterodon nasicus kennerlyi to full species status, based on two scale characters. Werler and Dixon (2000) regarded H. n. gloydi to be an allopatric, diagnosable taxon restricted to the low plains - eastern forest ecotone of eastern Texas. Smith et al. (2003) countered that it was not diagnosable. Both former subspecies are treated here as full species.

Size: typically < 80 cm (females) and < 67 cm (males); Ernst & Ernst 2003 mention a max. size of 154 cm, which turns out to be a typo (Carl Ernst, via Robert Powell, pers. comm., 11 Sep 2014).

Diet: frogs, toads, salamanders, lizards, snakes, birds, insects 
  • Adams, Amy A. Yackel, Daniel J. Martin and Rod D. Adams. 2015. Heterodon nasicus (plains hog-nosed snake) diet. Herpetological Review 46 (4): 645
  • Baird, S. F. and C. Girard. 1853. Catalogue of North American Reptiles in the Museum of the Smithsonian Institution. Part 1.-Serpents. Smithsonian Inst., Washington, xvi + 172 pp. - get paper here
  • Baird,S.F. and Girard,C. 1852. Characteristics of some new reptiles in the Museum of the Smithsonian Institution. Proc. Acad. Nat. Sci. Philadelphia 6: 68-70 - get paper here
  • Bateman, Heather L.; Alice Chung-MacCoubrey, Howard L. Snell, and Deborah M. Finch 2009. Abundance and Species Richness of Snakes along the Middle Rio Grande Riparian Forest in New Mexico. Herp. Cons. Biol. 4: 1 - get paper here
  • Blanchard, Frank N. 1923. The amphibians and reptiles of Dickinson County, Iowa. Iowa Studies in Natural History 10 (2): 19-26
  • Bumgardner, B. 2010. Die Westliche Hakennasennatter - Nordamerikas “Trendschlange”. Reptilia (Münster) 15 (81): 23-27 - get paper here
  • Burt, Charles E. 1935. Further records of the ecology and distribution of amphibians and reptiles in the middle west. American Midland Naturalist 16 (3): 311-336 - get paper here
  • Carr, Stacey E.;Stuart, James N. 1997. Geographic Distribution. Heterodon nasicus nasicus. Herpetological Review 28 (1): 52 - get paper here
  • Collins, J.T. & Collins, S.L. 2009. A pocket guide to Kansas snakes, 2nd ed. Great Plains Nature Center, Wichita, 69 pp.
  • Collins, J.T. & Collins, S.L. 2010. A pocket guide to Kansas snakes, 3rd ed. Great Plains Nature Center, Wichita, 69 pp.
  • Conant,R. & Collins,J.T. 1991. A Field Guide to Reptiles and Amphibians of Eastern/Central North America, 3rd ed. Houghton Mifflin (Boston/New York), xx + 450 p.
  • Crother, B. I. 2000. Scientific and standard English names of amphibians and reptiles of North America north of Mexico, with comments regarding confidence in our understanding. Herpetological Circular 29: 1-82
  • Crother, B. I. (ed.) 2012. Standard Common and Current Scientific Names for North American Amphibians, Turtles, Reptiles, and Crocodilians, Seventh Edition. Herpetological Circular 39: 1-92
  • Degenhardt, William G.; C. W. Painter, and A. H. Price 1996. Amphibians and reptiles of New Mexico. Univ. New Mexico Press, 431 pp.
  • Dixon, James R. 2000. Amphibians and reptiles of Texas, second edition. Texas A&M University Press, 421 pp.
  • Dixon, James R. & John E. Werler 2005. Texas Snakes. A Field Guide. University of Texas Press, 384 pp.
  • Edgren, R. A. 1952. A synopsis of the snakes of the genus Heterodon, with the diagnosis of a new race of Heterodon nasicus Baird and Girard. Nat. Hist. Misc., Chicago Acad. Sci. (112): 1-4
  • Ernst, C.H. & Ernst, E.M. 2003. Snakes of the United States and Canada. Smithsonian Inst. Press, Washington, 668 pp.
  • Ernst, C.H., & Barbour, R.W. 1989. Snakes of eastern North America. George Mason Univ. Press, Fairfax, VA 282 pp.
  • Force, Edith R. 1928. A Preliminary Checklist of Amphibians and Reptiles of Tulsa County. Proceedings of the Oklahoma Academy of Science 8: - get paper here
  • Garman,Samuel 1884. The reptiles and batrachians of North America. Mem. Mus. comp. Zool, Cambridge (Massachusetts), 8 (3): xxxiv + 185 pp. [1883] [CNAH reprint 10] - get paper here
  • Jan, G. 1865. Iconographie générale des ophidiens. 10. Livraison. J.B. Bailière et Fils, Paris - get paper here
  • Kennicott, R. 1860. Descriptions of new species of North American serpents in the museum of the Smithsonian Institution, Washington. Proc. Acad. Nat. Sci. Philadelphia 12: 328-338 - get paper here
  • Klesius, Thomas 2013. Wenn die Kälte kommt – die Überwinterung von Schlangen. Draco 14 (55): 50-56 - get paper here
  • Kunz, K. 2010. Hooked on Hogs! Süchtig nach Hakennasennattern. Reptilia (Münster) 15 (81): 16-22 - get paper here
  • Kunz, K. 2012. Immer der Nase nach! Reptilia (Münster) 17 (96): 12 - get paper here
  • LeClere, Jeff 1994. Snakes of Minnesota: Eastern hognose snake (Heterodon nasicus nasicus). Newsletter of the Minnesota Herpetological Society 14 (12): 12-14
  • LeClere, Jeff 1994. Snakes of Minnesota: eastern hognose snake (Heterodon nasicus nasicus)[sic]. Newsletter of the Minnesota Herpetological Society 14 (11): 15-17
  • LeClere, Jeff 1994. Snakes of Minnesota: Western hognose snake (Heterodon nasicus nasicus). Newsletter of the Minnesota Herpetological Society 14 (10): 12-15
  • Lillywhite, Harvey B. 2014. How Snakes Work: Structure, Function and Behavior of the World's Snakes. Oxford University Press, New York, 256 pp
  • Longhitano, F. 2010. Vorteile der Rackhaltung. Reptilia (Münster) 15 (84): 34-35 - get paper here
  • Longhitano, F. 2011. Farbformen der Westlichen Hakennasennatter (Heterodon nasicus). Reptilia (Münster) 16 (88): 52 - get paper here
  • Longhitano, Filip 2014. Farb- und Zeichnungsformen bei der Westlichen Hakennasennatter. Draco 16 (57): 70-73 - get paper here
  • Mattison, Chris 2007. The New Encyclopedia of Snakes. Princeton University Press
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  • Mutton, Nick 2012. Paradoxism. [color morphs]. HerpNation 2.5 (8): 12-17 - get paper here
  • Painter, Charles W.;Tomberlin, Barney R.;Brastad, Jens Petter 1996. Heterodon nasicus kennerlyi (Mexican hognose snake). Maximum size. Herpetological Review 27 (4): 203-204 - get paper here
  • Platt, Dwight R. 1969. Natural history of the hognose snakes Heterodon platyrhinos and Heterodon nasicus. University of Kansas Publications Museum of Natural History 18 (4): 253-420 - get paper here
  • Roth, Jan J.; Johnson, Bruce J.;Smith, Hobart M. 1989. The western hognose snake, Heterodon nasicus, west of the Continental Divide in Colorado, and its implications. Bull. Chicago Herp. Soc. 24 (9): 161-163 - get paper here
  • Schmidt, Dieter 2012. Giftbisse von giftigen und „harmlosen“ Schlangen. Teil 2. Terraria Elaphe 2012 (3): 68-75 - get paper here
  • Schmidt, T. 2009. Die Westliche Hakennasennatter Heterodon nasicus. Natur und Tier Verlag (Münster), 64 pp. - get paper here
  • Smith, Albert G.; Mittleman, M. B. 1947. Heterodon nasicus nasicus in Indiana. Herpetologica 4: 78 - get paper here
  • Smith, H.M.; Chiszar, D.; Eckerman, C.M. & Walley, H.D. 2003. The Taxonomic Status of the Mexican Hognose Snake Heterodon kennerlyi Kennicott (1860). Journal of Kansas Herpetology 5: 17-20 - get paper here
  • Stebbins,R.C. 1985. A Field Guide to Western Reptiles and Amphibians, 2nd ed. Houghton Mifflin, Boston
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  • TREU, B. 2015. Einige Betrachtungen bei der Haltung und Nachzucht der Westlichen Hakennasennatter (Heterodon nasicus BAIRD & GIRARD, 1852) unter Berücksichtigung ungewöhnlicher Lebensäußerungen. Sauria 37 (2): 49 - 51 - get paper here
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  • Vazquez-Diaz,J. et al. 1998. Heterodon nasicus (Western hognose Snake). Mexico: Aguascalientes. Herpetological Review 29 (3): 177 - get paper here
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  • Webb, Robert G.; Eckerman, Curtis M. 1998. Neotype and Type Locality of the Western hognose Snake, Heterodon nasicus (Serpentes: Colubridae). Texas Journal of Science 50 (2): 99-
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  • Werning, Heiko 2012. Die Reptilien und Amphibien des Südwestens. Draco 13 (50): 18-60 - get paper here
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