From the VDGIF webiste: This docile snake is also identifiable by its tendency to inflate its head and neck, coil, hiss and strike when initially disturbed. It does not bite, however, and if this display does not scare away the predator, the snake will writhe and feign death.
He did not, however, feign death, even though Eddie tried to get him to by moving things around him. I thought the poor thing had been through enough and we left him alone. Although I did get some nice video, too.
More facts: This species will burrow to capture buried prey. Hognosed snakes are almost exclusively predators of toads, although other prey are occasionally taken, including frogs, newts, salamanders, and even small rodents. Toads inflate themselves as a defensive measure, but hognose snakes have a pair of enlarged teeth on the maxillary bones that are used to deflate them, thus aiding in swallowing. The toxins found in the skin glands of toads are neutralized by enzymes in the snake's digestive tract.