What Are These Little Green Snakes In My Yard?
Great Snake To Have In Your Yard!
This little snake, a Smooth Green Snake, is a great find if it shows up around your house. Guess what it eats? Spiders and bugs!
Friendly Little Guys:
These snakes rarely bite and are quite tame when you pick them up. If they do bite they rarely break the skin and they are not poisonous. They just enjoy snacking on the spiders and insects in your yard and are fun to watch, if you can spot them.
Though quite common, they are rarely seen. Of all the snakes in Tennessee these probably have the best camouflage. They are green like a branch and spend a lot of time above the ground crawling through the vegetation. Animals that climb in trees and vegetation are known as “arboreal” creatures. They even sometimes coil up on branches to rest without being seen. They also are quick to stop moving if activity is going on around them so they do not give away their position to animals that use motion to detect their prey. They would be good at the game “Freeze Tag”. This disguise is not merely for protection, it also allows them to wait for their prey to come to them or to sneak up without being detected.
Call Me What You Will, I’m Just A Helpful Neighbor.
These snakes go by several different common names. Sometimes called “Grass Snakes” and “Vine Snakes”, because they resemble the vegetation they crawl through. Unlike the true Vine snakes that are found in tropical regions and are mildly poisonous, these are not. Their scientific name is Opheodrys vernalis.
Small and Skinny:
These snakes usually range between 11 and 20 inches in length and are very skinny. They are sometimes confused with the Rough Green Snake which often live in the same territory. However, its easy to see why these snakes are called “smooth Green Snakes”. The other variety has rough scales on its skin.
Shake Your Head:
One of the interesting behaviors of this snake is to watch its head. While zeroing in on its prey it often shakes its head back and forth. It also uses its keen sense of smell to locate its prey. They use their tongues to smell, flicking them in and out and withdrawing them back into their Jacobson’s organs to analyze the chemicals in the air. They are very good and finding their dinner in this manner.
These snakes are often found near the water or at least living in moist environments. They also like rocky boarders and areas with lots of grass and vegetation to hunt in. They are important in the ecosystem controlling the amount of insects and arachnids living their.
So…..If You See Us, Be Thankful!
As I discover new creatures in God’s Creation I am so thankful to know that each was designed with a specific purpose and is a testimony of the greatest of the Creator that designed them. I thank God for creating such a wonderful variety of creatures for us to discover and study. The more we look, the more we can praise the One who made them all for us to enjoy.
Colossians 1: 16
“For by Him were all things created, that are in heaven and earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers; all things were created by Him and for Him.”