Wildlife experts warn public to watch out for snakes this time of year


GREENVILLE, N.C. (WNCT) – Wildlife experts in the East are warning folks to watch out for snakes this time of year.

Experts say snake sightings are becoming more common with the cooler weather.

The Copperhead is the most common type of venomous snakes in North Carolina. They are found in every county.

Copperheads tend to be light and dark brown with an hourglass shape on their skin. They are also reportedly responsible for more than 90 percent of venomous snake bites in our state.  

Copperhead bites are not considered life-threatening; however, they are extremely serious and painful. 

Experts encourage you to keep your eyes and ears open this fall. They also suggest never walking outside without shoes on.

“Typically they like to be out and about in the low light situations moving around closer to night through the nighttime,” said Mark Tysinger, Parks Coordinator at River Park North in Greenville. “Anytime you’re out at night I highly recommend using a flashlight or something to be able to see where you’re going.”

According to the North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission, late summer, early fall is also the time of the year baby Copperheads are born. 

Experts say the babies tend to be more of a threat because they do not have full control over their venom glands like adults do. While adults have the ability to “dry bite” their prey, meaning they do not release any venom at all, the young snake tends to release all of their venom at one time. 

You can identify a baby snake by their bright green tails.

Experts say if a venomous snake ever bites you, circle the bite with a marker to track the swelling. They also highly suggest you call 911 immediately. 

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