Our great state of Maryland is home to over two dozen species and subspecies of snakes. In addition to common harmless snakes like garter snakes and brown snakes, there are also two species of venomous snakes: the copperhead and the timber rattlesnake.
These two snakes possess medically significant venom that can pose serious or even life-threatening risks to humans if bitten. Given these adverse reactions, it is important to know how to identify a venomous snake and prevent snake bites.
Identifying A Venomous Snake
Both the copperhead and the timber rattlesnake species originate from pit vipers subfamily. Pit vipers got their name from the heat-sensing pit organ located between each eye and nostril.
Aside from the sensory pit, there are a variety of ways to distinguish between a pit viper and other Maryland snakes. A pit viper has oval-shaped pupils and a single row of scales underneath its tail. Nonvenomous snakes, on the other hand, have round pupils and a double row of scales underneath their tails.
Snakes can also be identified by the shape and size of their head. Copperheads and timber rattlesnakes have heads that are much wider than their necks, whereas other snakes only have a slight width difference between the head and neck.
Preventing Snake Bites
When it comes to living peacefully with snakes, it is all about respect. Copperheads and timber rattlesnake plays a large role in the ecosystem, which means they should not be disturbed.
Other than learning how to identify these venomous snakes, there are many ways in which individuals can avoid dangerous encounters with pit vipers.
The most important thing to remember is venomous snakes should never be approached or handled, dead or alive. If you see a copperhead or timber rattlesnake, it is best to treat the situation with caution and keep your distance.
When hiking or walking through tall grass, always wear appropriate clothing, including long pants and heavy boots. When camping, be mindful of your surrounding area – check for snakes before setting up camp.
Always avoid rock piles, brush piles, and other piles of debris – snakes often use these piles to seek shelter. If you have to move these materials, use a rake, shovel, or another long-handled tool. This will allow you to check for the presence of snakes without getting too close.
Have A Snake Problem? Call the Experts at Shumaker Animal Control
If you think you have a snake problem on your property, call the experts at Shumaker Animal Control to deal with the problem for you. Our experienced team will take care of the problem in a timely manner, ensuring that your home and pets are not in any danger.
At Shumaker Animal Control, we are a family-owned business that cares about the safety of you and your family but also about the well-being of the animals themselves. All of our trapping and control methods are humane, as we never try to hurt the angry or scared animal.