News Filed Under Snakes
If you like to enjoy the great outdoors during spring and summer, you are not alone.
Whether you’re out hiking, fishing, camping, kayaking, horseback riding, or working in your backyard, you’ll likely come across many types of wildlife, including snakes. Just the thought of a snake can cause many people to shudder with fear. But learning about the kinds of snakes you may encounter in your area and how they behave can help you avoid a dangerous encounter.
STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Mississippi residents are not alone in their appreciation of hiking trails and water activities during the hot days of summer. Wildlife, including snakes, are right there with them.
As outdoor recreation picks up, so does water recreation. Where there is water, there will be snakes. There are all different kinds of snakes people encounter in Mississippi. Some are potentially dangerous and others are completely harmless.
FWRC-Wildlife, Fisheries & Aquaculture
STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Myths abound in every culture. Stories of fairies, snow monsters and mermaids are great entertainment, but it is important to be able to separate fact from fiction.
STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Warmer weather means wild creatures of all shapes and sizes are on the move, which makes it a whole lot more likely you will encounter a snake during the spring or summer.
“The only good snake is a dead snake” is an attitude probably triggered by common myths about snakes.
Snake myths are found in cultures around the globe, giving evidence of the troubled relationship between people and these reptiles. People are often afraid when they do not need to be. There are more snake myths than one article can cover, but let’s expose a few of the more common ones to the truth.
Myth: Rattlesnakes always give a warning rattle before they strike.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Despite most people’s fears, snakes are an important part of our natural world and are also helpful to us in many ways.
All snakes are predators, meaning they feed on other animals. Snakes kill and eat rats, mice, moles, insects and other pests that can damage crops and property or spread disease. Because snakes can get into places that other predators cannot or will not go, they can capture rodents that threaten livestock feed or farming equipment and supplies.
MISSISSIPPI STATE – Mississippi is home to a wide variety of creatures, and warmer spring temperatures bring many of them -- including snakes -- out into the sun.
“We have 35 species of nonvenomous snakes and just 6 species of venomous snakes,” said Adam Tullos, who specializes in wildlife management with the Mississippi State University Extension Service. “We also have snakes that are protected and endangered. Snakes benefit people by keeping insect, reptile and small mammal populations under control.”
By Karen Templeton
MSU Ag Communications
MISSISSIPPI STATE – Many pet dogs encounter venomous snakes during the hot summer months, but tragic consequences can be avoided when owners know what to do when their dogs get bitten.
“More dogs and snakes are out in warmer summer months, creating a situation where they will encounter each other,” said Dr. Kari Lunsford, assistant professor with Mississippi State University’s College of Veterinary Medicine. “Dogs, curious by nature, agitate snakes and can end up getting bitten.”
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- High waters from Hurricane Katrina will drive snakes, rodents and fire ants into areas they may not venture normally, such as homes and storage buildings.
Bill Maily, area wildlife agent with Mississippi State University's Extension Service, said any time a building has been flooded, people should enter it with extra caution.
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- High waters from hurricanes and floods will drive snakes and rodents into areas they may not venture normally, such as homes and storage buildings.
Bill Maily, area wildlife agent with Mississippi State University's Extension Service, said anytime a building has been flooded, people should enter it with extra caution.
By Crystel Bailey
MISSISSIPPI STATE -- Mississippians enjoy telling about close encounters with most wildlife species, but snakes are usually a different story.
Summertime activities place people outdoors during a time when snakes are more active. Awareness of potential snake habitats and cleaning up those areas may be the best bets for avoiding an unwanted encounter.
"Snakes are seen more frequently when mating, in spring, early summer months and then fall," said Dean Stewart, wildlife specialist with Mississippi State University's Extension Service.