Western Smooth Green Snake
(Opheodrys vernalis blanchardi)
  • Habitat: Meadows, grassy marshes, moist grassy fields along forest edge
  • Food: Insects and spiders
  • Life cycle: They mate in spring and late summer. Females lay 3 to 11 cylinder-shaped eggs from late July to August. The young hatch 4 to 23 days later.

Green snakes are my favorite snakes, and I’m sure you think so too if you’ve ever held one. All fears of snakes may be dismissed when you meet a green snake. They are smooth, docile little snakes, which twine around your fingers as you hold them. They’ll never bite you, and are perfectly harmless.

One interesting fact about green snakes is that they’re diurnal. This is the opposite of nocturnal, and it means that green snakes are active during the day.

Smooth green snakes, as their name implies, have smooth, green scales. They are generally smaller than garter snakes, ranging from 14 inches to 26 inches (35.5-66 cm) long.

Green snakes can climb in trees well, but prefer to stay on the ground. Their green scales serve as good camouflage as they slither through the grass.

I once thought that the Rough Green Snake (Opheodrys aestivus) lived in the Blue Haven area, but its range does not reach into New Mexico, and I am doubtful that they do live in the area. Therefore I have not included the Rough Green Snake in the field guide.


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