Trip Details

Location: Linn county, Iowa

Weather: 70 degrees, partly cloudy, low humidity

Time: 2:00 p.m.

Herpers: Laura and Jim Scharosch

Account by: Jim Scharosch

Photos by: Jim Scharosch

Laura and I went to a site in Linn County that our friend Don Becker had seen a hognose snake at the day before. It was in shed and I hoped it might still be hanging around the area. As is usually my luck with hognose snakes, it wasn't there.

Laura and I alternated turning cover objects, and she lifted a piece of tin and found a freshly hatched Bullsnake (Pituophis catenifer).

There were two sheds near the hole that the bullsnake was preparing to head down when Laura found it.

We went to let the snake go back down the hole, and there were two more under the tin!

As we messed wih the three we had in hand I lifted the tin again and there was a fourth that had just come up. We had four in hand, and I set the tin back down. I lifted it again about a minute later and there were two more little heads looking out of the hole! That was six bullsnake hatchlings observed in the course of fifteen minutes. Obviously there was a clutch of eggs that hatched in a burrow under this tin. It was the first time I had ever happened upon something like this, and it was a lot of fun to see.

Read our disclaimer here...