Hillbilly Mom – Venomous or Non Venomous…Do you know?

Snakes that are venomous primarily want to use their venom on animals that they want to eat for food. In rare cases these snakes will need to use their venom for defense if they feel threatened. It is imperative that you at least have a basic understanding of snakes and are able to if nothing else, identify the different types in your specific region. It is also vital to have a plan in the event that you or someone you know has been bitten. Being able to identify the snake that bit you will help whoever is trying to administer aid to you.

Here are some pictures of different types of snakes. See if you can tell which are venomous and which ones are not.

Number 1
Number 2
Number 3
Number 4
Number 5
Number 6

The first snake, Number 1 is a Milk snake. Non Venomous. They grow 20 to 60 inches long. They have smooth and shiny scales. Their usual color pattern is alternating bands of red-black-yellow or white-black-red. They are commonly mistaken for the coral snake.

The second snake, Number 2 is a Rat Snake. Non Venomous in most cases. They are medium to large constrictors that can be found through a great portion of the northern hemosphere. They feed primarily on rodents and birds and, with some species exceeding 10 feet, they can occupy top levels of some food chains. Some species can be very skittish and sometimes aggressive but bites are seldom serious. Rat snakes pose no threat to humans. Rat snakes were long thought to be completely nonvenomous, but recent studies have shown that some Old World species do possess small amounts of venom (amounts so small as to be negligible to humans).

The third snake, Number 3 is an Arizona Coral Snake. Seriously Venomous! They are a fairly small snake ranging from 15 to 20 inches. They have a slender body and a small head. Black, red and yellow body.  Red always touches yellow, black never touches red. Their head is black, followed by a narrow yellow ring. Can be found in rotting logs, under debris, in burrows of other animals and near vegetation. Usually found in NM and Ariz.

The fourth snake, Number 4 is a Bull snake. Non Venomous.  These snakes average about 6 feet, but have been recorded up to almost 9 feet. Most Bull Snakes are known for their self defense battle stance. They generally have a “bad attitude”, and are often mistaken for rattlesnakes. It will hiss to simulate the rattlesnake, then it will pound it’s tail on the ground on leaves or brush and it will assume the “S” position as well.

The fifth snake, Number 5 is a common Western Diamondback snake. Seriously Venomous! (potentially lethal) Averages 2 1/2 feet to 6 feet. Has a diamond pattern against dark brown to gray ground color. They are very aggressive. When challenged they will raise their head above their coils. Pursues rodents and rabbits into ranching and farming areas.

The sixth snake, Number 6 is a Copperhead. Venomous! Copperheads are most likely responsible for more venomous snake bites than any other snake in the U.S. Their venom causes hemorrhage, pain, swelling, breathing difficulty, vomiting, gangrene, headache and unconsciousness. They have no rattle but they will vibrate their tail if disturbed. Prefers lowland areas near swamps and streams, but may ascend to rocky hills and outcroppings.

The seventh snake, Number 7 is an Eastern Cottonmouth. Extremely Venomous! Cottonmouths are a fat dark snake, that can get up to about 4 feet. If threatened, a cotton mouth might coil, hold it’s head far back and open it’s mouth wide to reveal the white interior that gives it it’s name. This very dangerous snake is short tempered, cranky, unlikely to retreat and often aggressive.  It’s potent venom kills red blood cells and causes extensive tissue damage. Over 50% of Cottonmouth bites necessitate amputation of limb or digits because of gangrene.

The eighth snake, Number 8 is an Eastern Ribbon Snake. Non Venomous. They resemble the common Garter snake. They are comfortable both in and out of water, they are adapted to both environments.

It is best to always treat snakes with caution and not to handle them. Even if you think you have correctly identified them, mistakes can always be made. Either call someone who is trained to remove the snake or if it isn’t harming anything just let it be. Maybe anti-venom should be something we keep in our first aid kits if we live somewhere venomous snakes are? That was my question, but after looking into owning anti venom I see that it must be prescribed by your doctor and that it is extremely expensive. The anti venom itself does in fact have a shelf life. So onto plan “B” then,  You really need to find out if your local hospital carries anti venom and if not, what is the nearest facility that does.

How did you do? Did you get them all right? 

This is an archive of: http://hillbillymom08.blogspot.com/2011/12/venomous-or-non-venomousdo-you-know.html