Smooth Snake

CoronellaAustriacaThe Smooth snakes are kind of snake species, which belong to the Colubridae family. They are not dangerous to humans. The body length is up to 70 cm. From other European snakes they well differ by the presence of a dark stripe through the eye, and transverse bands or spots on the body. Coloring of their back varies from gray to yellow-brown and brown-copper-red. On the upper side of the body situated 2-4 rows of extending spots, sometimes merging into strips. On the back of the head they have two brown spots or stripes combined with each other. The belly is from gray or bluish-steel to brown-red color, with dark spots and blurred speckles or dark gray stripe down the middle. Iris of the eye of the snake is usually red. A dark stripe stretches from the nostrils through the eye and the angle of the mouth to the neck.

It inhabits almost the entire territory of Europe.

The Smooth snake prefers forested glades, solar edges, dry meadows and wood cuttings in a variety of forest types, avoiding damp places, although they’re good swimmers. They inhabit burrows of rodents and lizards, void under rocks and fallen tree trunks, bark, cracks of the rocks.

The snake lives a daily life, but sometimes comes out of hiding at dusk and even on clear moonlit nights. During several years it does not change its individual habitats.

‘High season’ for them lasts about half the year. The Smooth snake hides for the winter in September – October. 1-1.5 months before that they produce 2-15 pups 12.5-17.5 cm length. Sexual maturity occurs in the third year of life.

Smooth snakes predominantly (about 60%) prey on lizards, at least – on other small vertebrates (mice, voles, shrews and chicks of passerine birds, frogs).

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