Hoop Snake

image Sightings of hoop snakes have been reported since colonial times in North America and for at least the past century in Australia. This snake grasps its tail in its mouth and rolls after its prey, thereby achieving great speed, especially when going downhill. Hoop snakes have been clocked going over 60 m.p.h. At the tip of its tail is a highly venomous stinger, making this a creature to be avoided at all costs. It is the only species of snake known to have a stinger on its tail, and this stinger is so poisonous that even if it strikes a tree, the tree will instantly wither, turn black, and die.

If you should encounter a hoop snake in the wild, the best defense is to run as fast as you can and hope to find a fence to leap over. The hoop snake will have to uncoil to get through the fence, thereby slowing it down. Some have reported that diving through the hoop of the snake will cause it to run away. This, however, has never been verified.

More content from the Hoax Museum:


Rolling after me,
A giant,speeding hoop snake
thank goodness it's missed me
Posted by J  on  Wed Nov 15, 2006  at  11:42 AM
Maybe the last line could be changed to: thank goodness, it missed.

That would make it five syllables.
Posted by The Curator  in  San Diego  on  Wed Nov 15, 2006  at  08:23 PM
Alex,thanks for the suggestion.I agree it was writtenslight ly wrong
Posted by J  on  Mon Nov 20, 2006  at  01:33 PM
Interestingly,this legend seems to have it's roots in reality.Some species of snake curl into a hoop shape for unknown reasons. This is remarkably similar to the amphisbaena of myth.This half-bird half-snake would put it's tail in it's mouth and roll away from danger.
Posted by Thisisnotadrillalienshaveinvadedtheplanetearth  on  Tue May 29, 2007  at  01:55 AM
This kind of snake appears frequently in Swedish folklore too, where it is often called "Hjulorm" or "Lindorm". A Swedish scientist that did research in folklore, Gunnar Olof Hylt
Posted by Robin Bruhn  on  Thu Nov 22, 2007  at  07:01 PM
Hoop Snakes are NOT hoaxes! I live in PA in the country and have seen these back in the late 60's, but none since. They may have died out, or are just very rare. You can read a true encounter I had with one, one summer with my dad, here:
Posted by Robert  on  Sun Jul 06, 2008  at  12:14 PM
Posted by thisisnotadrillmybuttisonfireandineedsomeointment  on  Tue Dec 30, 2008  at  05:37 PM
:lol: Hi hi hi hillarious.. ! 😊
Posted by Espen H  on  Tue Jan 27, 2009  at  01:28 AM
Thank you. You've helped me prove their real.
Posted by mimi  on  Wed Mar 04, 2009  at  03:23 PM
hi i was wondering if the hoop snake is real i need to know so please email me back

- brittney
Posted by brittney  on  Wed Mar 11, 2009  at  01:19 PM
thank you for the wonderful emformation 😊
Posted by brittney  on  Wed Mar 11, 2009  at  01:22 PM
Hoop snakes were included in the book "Elijah", when the preacher tells Elijah that if a hoop snake stings you, your body will explode, except for your head. Then you must wait in agony for 2 weeks before you die of starvation, since you no longer have a stomach. This, of course, is complete bogus. Unfortunately, I cannot recall the name of this author.
Posted by liddle bum  on  Sun Mar 15, 2009  at  12:52 AM
this has got to be one of the most childish, patheticly stupid thing to believe in. Snakes cannot even hold themselves upward for more than a few seconds, let alone hold themselves in a perfect circle capable of rolling. Then on top of that.. 60 mph? do you really belive that a wheel shaped piece of rope could propel itself at a cars speed? But wait it gets better.. A stinging tail that kills trees instntly, any venom capable of killing a tree in a few seconds would make any ither victim explode in a fiery cluster of flesh. I find it very humerous that any grown person would belive in anything so rediculous. Well, im off to find Bigfoot, and shoot him with my magic wand.
Posted by NoClip  on  Mon Apr 27, 2009  at  07:31 AM
:cheese: 60mph is nothing.. hoop snakes in the alps can easily reach 200mph riding avalanches. But they will often crash into 1000 pieces at the bottom as they are very easily frozen. Most intelligent hoop snakes are even scared of icecream. But their fierce hunting instinct sometimes override that fear.
Posted by Espen H  on  Mon Apr 27, 2009  at  07:52 AM
the hoop snake is not childish is is very real :roll:
Posted by brittney  on  Mon Apr 27, 2009  at  01:51 PM
Young hoop snakes are often a bit childish.. but they are very serious and methodic hunters from early puberty.
Posted by Espen  on  Mon Apr 27, 2009  at  02:14 PM
When I was about 10 I saw a snake "roll" itself out of my way. To me, it looked exactly like a wheel. Nobody believed me. Shortly afterward I read that it is an optical illusion. this was in 1979. 🐍 <--that is a snake too. By now I had assumed it was common knowledge.
Posted by mario fernandez  on  Mon Apr 27, 2009  at  02:38 PM
:P Christopher Pual Curtis is the author of Eligah, my daughter just purchased the book from the book fair
Posted by louis  on  Wed Apr 29, 2009  at  09:35 PM
The hoop snake is real and in SC.I was 8 yrs old picking black berrys with my Grandma when she said run Norma I said run. I went past her this snake was crawing after her. When I went passed her so did that snake.I saw it when it grabed its tail in its mouth. It looked like a holu hoop to me. I never new it was called a hoop snake till this year. BUT THEY ARE REAL.
Posted by Norma Nichols  on  Sat May 02, 2009  at  05:05 PM
thats a cool story :cheese:
Posted by brittney  on  Sun May 03, 2009  at  07:24 AM
I was reading this book and a man was telling two little boys about hoop snakes. The man said that if you got stung you would blow up. Now I know that hoop snakes are real but if anyone new what happened to you if you got stung , it would help. Thanks. :cheese:
Posted by Hannah  on  Tue Jun 02, 2009  at  09:54 AM
To the scholar above who wrote the following:
********************************************* this has got to be one of the most childish, patheticly stupid thing to believe in. Snakes cannot even hold themselves upward for more than a few seconds, let alone hold themselves in a perfect circle capable of rolling.
him saying that snakes can't hold themselves up for no more then a few seconds, well lets just say he's not near as knowledgable about snakes as he wants people to think. When I was in the Army, in Viet Nam, I went on R&R (rest and recreation) in Thailand. Me and some friends went hiking in the hills. I confronted a huge King Cobra and when he reared up, him and me was eye to eye for almost 8 minutes. Him growling, and close enough I could smell his nasty breath. I froze, knowing not to tempt this venomous giant in anyway. After what seemed like an eternity, he lowered himself and crawled off in the bush. And as far as the gentlemans knowledge of snakes, my grandfather lost a leg because a hoop snake stunk him while thrashing wheat in Oklahoma in 1917. Just because you don't see one or know nothing but whats on TV, it doesn't mean something doesn't exist. Turn off the video games, get out and "learn" and see things. And this applies to the gentleman who said the quote above..............sir, you are VERY SHELTERED. I can back up what I"m talking about, your intelligence didn't impress me. Have a good day.
Posted by Darrell C  on  Sun Jul 05, 2009  at  04:58 PM
When I was 6 years old in 1959 growing up just outside of Hanover,Ohio on a farm on wills road off of 668. I was riding on a hay wagon helping my dad,brother and mom putting up hay,My dad yelled and said look at that it was a hoop snake rolling around the hay field, My dad said don't get off of the wagon and my dad jumped on the wagon with us,My dad said watch because that may be the only hoop snake you'll ever see in a life time.Told me he has seen them when growing up in West Virgina when he was a kid back in the 30s I have only seen one other hoop snake in the 80's and I got to point it out to my kids,Yes people they are real and roll like a hoop,but they are rare to every being seen.My Dad did say they were a poison snake.
Posted by Don Bennett  on  Thu Jul 16, 2009  at  08:23 PM
i have no idea what the hell i am doing
Posted by monika  on  Tue Sep 15, 2009  at  03:09 PM
right now i am 10 years old and i know the wise guy who wrote that note on how hoop snakes arent real is a word im not yet aloud to say, but ima back that army guy up because even though ive never seen a hoop snake someone who used to be in the army or vise-versa would probrably know more than that crap-head and that is all i will say
Posted by Kaylee  on  Sun Oct 11, 2009  at  02:48 PM
i have a close friend in texas that told me he saw such a snake years ago in texas. i have no reason to doubt him as his tale had no "OH WOW" intent or fantastic nature. i forget how it ended; the snake either climbed into a tree or unwrapped at a tree or bush and crawled along on its way. the man is a university graduate and served in the military.
the ridicule for many stories is deserved as i do not believe the 60 mph part, or the stinging of a tree and instant death. some people tell in a mater-of-fact manner. they could be truthfully telling what they saw.
Posted by marc sefcik  on  Sun Oct 11, 2009  at  05:09 PM
Hoop snakes are real cause my grampa died from a bite in 1960
Posted by Kaijene  on  Tue Oct 27, 2009  at  08:31 PM
Many years ago, when I was 8, I was riding w/bro,sis,father, and we saw a snake roling down a hillside and across the road.(in northern ark).we could not believe what we saw. It was about the size of a 24" bicycle tire. Just talking w/my 90 old aunt yesterday and she remembers when she was a child that her uncle kill one and her grandfather told them it was a "hoop" snake. It had a hard stinger in its tail.
Posted by Wendell Davis  on  Tue Dec 15, 2009  at  04:22 AM
In the early 50's my mother and I were driving down a gravel road in SE Kansas, and ahead of us, on the shoulder of the road, was a hoop shake going forward. She slowed down, pointed out what it was, and we watched it for a few minutes. It eventually went into the ditch. The area was nearby a timber area...needless, to say, it did exist.
Posted by C.P.  on  Tue Dec 22, 2009  at  12:39 PM
the author is christopher paul curtis...Elijah of Buxton was the book refering yo hoop snakes.
Posted by michelle  on  Fri Jan 08, 2010  at  09:03 AM
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