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Rori Paloski

Smooth Greensnake (Opheodrys vernalis)

Smooth Greensnake photo.
Photo © A.B. Sheldon
  • Family: Colubridae (Non-venomous snakes)
  • Status: Common
  • Size: 14-20 inches

range map

Species range

This species is often called the grass snake due to its color. The name "smooth" refers to the unkeeled scales which give the snake a sleek, smooth texture and appearance. This beautiful little snake is one of only five Wisconsin snakes to have unkeeled scales. The bright emerald green color of this snake makes it easy to identify, although buff-colored individuals may be found in northern and central Wisconsin. No matter the adult color, the young are olive-green upon hatching. Smooth greensnakes frequent prairies, oak savannas, bracken grasslands, open areas in pine barrens and grassy areas along forest edges. Greensnakes feed on insects, grubs and worms.


Smooth Greensnake  Photo

Photo © A.B. Sheldon.

Last revised: Tuesday, December 22, 2020