Playing 'possum: NC 'zombie snake' is harmless, officials say

North Carolina's "zombie snake" plays dead / Source: North Carolina Parks and Recreation

RALEIGH, NC. (WVLT/WNCN) -- North Carolina officials are shedding some light on a "harmless," but scary-sounding reptile known as the "Zombie Snake."

This little guy is famous in North Carolina, according to CBS affiliate WNCN. Its official name is Eastern Hognose, which comes from its upturned nose, used to help dig up toads for eating.

If bothered, NC Parks and Recreation says the snake will at first hiss and spread its neck like a cobra, but the Zombie Snake lives up to its name if something continues to bother it.

"If the antagonist continues, the hognose snake will feign death by opening its mouth, rolling over on its back, and writhing around,"WNCN reported.

If it is bothered again, "it will immediately roll again onto its back" and play dead.

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