Rough Earthsnake (Rough Earth Snake)

Virginia striatula
Colubridae (nonvenomous snakes) in the order Squamata (lizards and snakes)

A small, plain, secretive snake that is a uniform gray, brown or reddish brown, with a cream-colored or light gray belly, unmarked.

The rough earthsnake is a close relative of the western smooth earthsnake and is extremely similar in appearance. Rough earthsnakes differ from western smooth earthsnakes by having keeled scales along the back (which make them feel rough), five labial scales along the upper lip, and a single scale between the nostrils—compared to relatively smooth scales along the back, six labial scales along the upper lip, and two scales between the nostrils for the western smooth earthsnake.

It is 7 to 10 inches (18-25 cm) long.
Habitat and conservation: 
This species is mainly found in open woodlands with abundant ground cover.
Rough earthsnakes feed mainly on earthworms, and occasionally eat snails and slugs.
Distribution in Missouri: 
Southern half of the state, excluding southeastern counties.
Life cycle: 
They give birth to live young, with females producing up to 10 young in a litter.
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