Snakes of the Eastern United States

Whit Gibbons

The first new guide of its kind in more than a decade


Snakes of the Eastern United States is extraordinarily informative about snake biology and impresses on the reader that snakes are an integral part of the natural world we share with them. This book will go far toward educating the public and encouraging everyone to respect these intriguing creatures.”
—Jim Fowler, Mutual of Omaha’s Wild Kingdom

“I have always enjoyed learning about snakes and found this book to be the best source I have seen to continue doing so. Great job with awesome illustrations.”
—Jeff Corwin, Animal Planet

"With excellent identification guidance, exceptional range maps, and stunning photographs that capture habitat and behavior as well as the species, Snakes of the Eastern United States is sure to become a trusted reference for the exploring naturalist. Snakes have fascinated me since boyhood, and I wish this book had been available then. I'm glad it is now."
—Hank Paulson, 74th United States Secretary of the Treasury and Chairman, The Paulson Institute

"This superbly illustrated and authoratative volume takes us on a detailed yet easily understandable tour through the magnificent snakes of the eastern USA. If you want to learn about snake biology, recognize the snake that just appeared in your back yard, or simply glory in the beauty of these spectacular animals, then this is the book for you."
—Rick Shine, University of Sydney

"In 1910, Teddy Roosevelt proclaimed ‘We need a literature of science which shall be readable.’ In today’s age of instant gratification, we also need a literature of science that is enjoyable, and with Snakes of the Eastern United States fulfills this goal. To conserve snakes, a shunned group at best, they must be understood; that once they are understood they will be appreciated; and that once they are appreciated, they will be conserved. Books such as this are critical, because they form the foundation of today’s bottom-up, grassroots conservation efforts."
—Michael J. Lannoo, Indiana University School of Medicine

A new book from the University of Georgia Press belongs in the library of anyone who spends time outdoors, even if just in the yard. . . . Snakes of the Eastern United States is lavishly illustrated with beautiful color photographs of the legless reptiles, which should make identifying any of the 63 snake species native to the East a snap.
—Lee Shearer, Athens Banner-Herald

“In Snakes of the Eastern United States, photographs, colorful geographic range maps and comprehensive written accounts provide essential information about each snake species, including detailed identification characteristics, general ecology and behavior, and conservation status.”
University of Georgia Columns

Snakes of the Eastern United States is an aesthetically pleasing, well-written, information-packed book that should appeal to a wide audience, from the neophyte snake enthusiast to the seasoned herpetologist. Furthermore, with its strong conservation message, the usefulness of Snakes of the Eastern United States goes well beyond that of a field guide. . . . This book is an educational tool and potential attitude changer.”
—Brian S. Gray, Bulletin of the Chicago Herpetological Society

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More than sixty species of snakes are found in the eastern United States, the region of highest biodiversity of all reptiles and amphibians in North America. In this brand new guide, stunning photographs, colorful geographic range maps, and comprehensive written accounts provide essential information about each species—including detailed identification characteristics, general ecology and behavior, and conservation status. Carefully researched and written by an expert herpetologist, the guide is directed toward a general audience interested in natural history.

Additional information supports the already fact-filled snake species profiles. A chapter on urban and suburban snake ecology focuses on species most commonly found in some of the country’s largest cities and residential settings. A chapter on snake conservation includes information on threats faced by native species in many regions of the eastern United States. Another chapter provides the latest updates on the status of invasive species of pythons and boa constrictors that have now become naturalized permanent residents in certain areas of the country. This is the most accessible and informative guide to snakes of the eastern United States available anywhere.


  • More than 385 stunning color photographs
  • Colorful geographic range maps
  • Species accounts that cover identification, general ecology and behavior, and conservation status
  • Extra information on snakes in urban and suburban areas
  • Strong conservation message, with a focus on environmental threats to native species
  • Coverage of invasive snakes

Covers snakes in these states (plus Washington, DC):
New Hampshire
New Jersey
New York
North Carolina
Rhode Island
South Carolina
West Virginia

A Wormsloe Foundation Nature Book

Page count: 392 pp.
385 color photos, 64 distribution maps, 68 size charts
Trim size: 6.125 x 9.25


List price: $32.95

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Whit Gibbons is a professor emeritus of ecology at the University of Georgia and author or co-author of several books on herpetology and ecology, including Keeping All the Pieces, Snakes of the Southeast, Revised Edition, Frogs and Toads of the Southeast, Lizards and Crocodilians of the Southeast, Turtles of the Southeast, and Salamanders of the Southeast (all Georgia).