North Carolina: Zombie snake found pretends to be dead.
Animals can exhibit weird defense strategies in the wild: A bizarre “zombie snake” found in North Carolina can “play dead” to scare away predators and it is a chilling sight.
Known as the eastern hognose snake, this strange reptile can flip over on its back and pretend it’s a corpse, North Carolina State Parks and Recreation told Fox News. North Carolina State Parks and Recreation officials recently shared photos of the “undead” creatures on Facebook, however, these “zombie snakes” are actually alive and efficiently protecting themselves in their natural habitats.
The eastern hognose snake, which is known for its upturned snout and can grow up to four feet in length, doesn’t immediately resort to this scare tactic when it’s provoked though:
According to the Amphibians and Reptiles of North Carolina, eastern hognose snakes will first hiss loudly, spread their necks, and strike repeatedly if threatened. If the attacker keeps up its behavior, the eastern hognose snake “will then feign death by opening its mouth, rolling over on its back, and writhing around. If turned over onto its belly, it will immediately roll again onto its back.”
Despite their strange self-defense behavior, eastern hognose snakes rarely bite unless they’re extremely bothered in their environment.
“Hognoses are considered rear fanged and their venom is not considered medically significant,” Dustin Smith from the North Carolina Zoo told The Charlotte Observer. “There have been a few cases of severe swelling in humans, but it’s rare.”