Sunday, September 21, 2008

Hypsiglena torquata

The last couple of years, my son, Nathan, has set a goal of finding (and handling) eight different species of snakes in Oregon in one summer. This is a tough thing to do, as Oregon is not a state with a lot of reptilian variety. This summer, he accomplished that goal. The final species of the season was a Night Snake (Hypsiglena torquata), a rarely seen and completely nocturnal species. Night Snakes are rear-fanged, and prey primarily upon lizards (and their venom is not a problem for humans).

Nate and his brother Jasper found this individual while cruising the roads of Jefferson County near midnight on a hot late-summer evening (which seems to be the best way to find them). Nate took the top photo, and Willow took the other two photos I've shared here.

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