Range extends down the east coast from North Carolina to northern Florida, then stretches west along the Gulf coast to east Texas, and north to central Arkansas and southeastern Oklahoma. A separate population is found in eastern Virginia.
Semi-aquatic species found in a wide variety of stagnant or slow-moving freshwater habitats, such as swamps, bogs, ponds, rice fields, canals, drainage ditches, and floodplains. It will sometimes travel to grassy or woodland areas adjacent to wetlands. It likes to hide in burrows or under mucky vegetation at the water's edge.
A small-medium snake averaging 16 inches, but it can grow longer. It has mildly keeled, glossy scales, and is typically a solid dark green to olive brown on its dorsum. Its ventrum is cream or yellowish with 2 adjacent rows of black spots that merge near the throat and on the tail. It has a small head with very large round eyes and a short snout with yellow scales around the mouth. Its neck is undefined.
Learn more with Schechter Natural History's Guide to Reptiles and Amphibians