Rough Green Snake
Opheodrys aestivus

Photo by ME Dorcas

 

Description: Rough green snakes are very slender and graceful with beautiful, solid green backs and yellow or white bellies. The scales are keeled (rough). Rough green snakes are excellent climbers and spend most of their time above ground. When captured, they never bite and are usually very gentle when held.

Feeding/Diet: They feed on insects and spiders.

Habitat/Range: They are active primarily during the daytime and are common in areas with dense vegetation surrounding water. Because they blend in so well with the vegetation in which they live, rough green snakes are often difficult to find.

Reproduction: They breed in the spring or fall and lay 3–12 eggs during the summer. Several females may lay eggs in one spot, frequently inside rotting logs. The babies, that hatch in early fall, look like miniature adults, but their color is less vividly green.

Miscellaneous: The skin of the rough green snake turns blue soon after it dies. A cousin of the rough green snake, the smooth green snake (Opheodrys vernalis) may occur in western North Carolina, but no reliable verification exists.

Back to Snakes of North Carolina
Back to Herps of North Carolina

The shaded region represents the range of the rough green snake in North Carolina.

Photo by Eric Stine

Photo by ME Dorcas

Photo by JD Willson

Photo by JD Willson

Photo by Eric Stine


This website created by: J. Willson, Y. Kornilev, W. Anderson, G. Connette and E. Eskew.
For comments or questions contact M. Dorcas: midorcas@davidson.edu.
M. Dorcas homepage: http://www.bio.davidson.edu/dorcas
Davidson College, Davidson, North Carolina 28035-1719.

Text and maps from: Dorcas, M. E. 2004. A Guide to the Snakes of North Carolina. Davidson College - Herpetology Laboratory, Davidson, NC. – Copyright by Michael E. Dorcas.

Partial Funding for this website provided by a Associate Colleges of the South, National Science Foundation, and Duke Energy.