Figure 10 from the original description of Nerodia hillmani (Wilson, 1968). a-b, Nerodia hillmani, maxilla, UMMP V55706, lateral and ventral views. c-e, Nerodia hillmani, holotype, precaudal vertebra, UMMP V55701, anterior, lateral, and ventral views. Figure elements have been repositioned from the original to better fit the image boundaries.
REPTILIA (Reptiles) SQUAMATA (PART) (Snakes) NATRICIDAE (Harmless Egg-Retaining Snakes)

Hillman's Watersnake
Nerodia hillmani (Wilson 1968)

Conservation Status:


A small natricine with a low neural spine thickened at the dorsal and posterior margins; hypapophyses and epizygopophysial spines well developed and zygosphene strongly crenate. From Wilson (1968).


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  • Occurrence Summary:  
  • 7
  • 7
    Museum Vouchers 
  • 0
    Other Observations 
Some county occurrences indicated below may be too imprecise to map above.
County Breakdown: County Name (# occurrences):
Trego (7);

Natural History:

The closest extant species to N. hillmani possibly is Regina alleni (R. grahamii not examined) and differs from this form only by the relatively smaller size and lower neural spine with expanded dorsal and posterior edges. A maxillary (text-fig. 10a-b) is tentatively assigned to N. hillmani. The tooth shape is similar to that described by Rossman (1963) for R. grahamii. The maxilla held approximately twelve teeth from the anterior extreme to the posterior margin of the medial process. Several caudal vertebrae referred to this species, exhibit the wide postero-lateral directed transverse processes as in R. alleni and other closely allied species.
Named for Mr. Lowell Hillman, owner of the property where the excavation of the WaKeeney local fauna was carried out.
From Wilson (1968).

1968 Wilson, Richard L. Systematics and faunal analysis of a Lower Pliocene vertebrate assemblage from Trego County, Kansas. Contributions from the Museum of Paleontology, University of Michigan 22():75-126
1975 Holman, J. Alan. Herpetofauna of the WaKeeney local fauna (Lower Pliocene: Clarendionian) of Trego County, Kansas. Pages 49-66 in Studies on Cenozoic Paleontology and Stratigraphy in honor of Claude W. Hibbard. Museum of Paleontology, The University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan. pp.
1995 Parmley, Dennis and J. Alan Holman. Hemphillian (Late Miocene) snakes from Nebraska, with comments on Arikareean through Blancan Snakes of midcontinental North America. Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology 15(1):79-95
2010 Parmley, Dennis and Katie Beth Hunter. Fossil snakes of the Clarendonian (Late Miocene) Pratt Slide Local Fauna of Nebraska, with the description of a new Natricine Colubrid. Journal of Herpetology 44(4):526-543
2023 Nunez, Leroy, Levi N Gray, David Weisrock, and Frank T Burbrink. The phylogenomic and biogeographic history of the Gartersnakes, Watersnakes, and Allies (Natricidae: Thamnophiini). Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution 186(5:107844):12
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Travis W. Taggart © 1999-2024 — w/ Sternberg Museum of Natural History, Fort Hays State University