Venomous Snakes in Georgia

Ever wondered why spring is eitherthe most favoriteor least desired season of all? They say spring is a season of transformation and new beginnings. Aside from the many flowering plants that blossom during the season, various animals also start their breeding season in springtime, which then results to more baby animals.People tend to be more comfortable spending time outdoors and doing wildlife activities. Most of them are out in their backyardswith family and friends gathered together over grilled burgers and cold drinks in their hands. Unfortunately, some may not easily notice that while they are out, creepy animals such as snakes would suddenly appear out of nowhere. Surprisingly, snakes are very active and a bit aggressive due to weather temperature.With all due respect with such reptile, not all of them are poisonous. If one would think about it, snakes are just living their normal lives in their own habitat with having no desire to harm anyone. In the state of Georgia, snakes are common where most of them are found in high mountains,while some live in urban and suburban areas. Believe it or not, they are an important part of Georgia’s ecosystem because of the roles they play as both predator and prey. They are also considered economical since their sources of food are pests, rats, mice, among others. According to the state’s Department of Natural Resources (Wildlife Resources Division), there are 46 snake species in the area, while 6 of them are considered venomous: Copperhead, Pigmy Rattlesnake, Timber Rattlesnake, Eastern Diamondback Rattlesnake, Eastern Coral Snake,and Cottonmouth.

1. Copperhead
Known for having short fangs, its venom is rarely fatal and oftentimes shows warning bites in which no venom is released. Symptoms include tingling, severe nausea, swelling and extreme pain.

2. Pigmy Rattlesnake
Small but very deadly, this snake is active at night and usually hides among litter of leaves. When bitten, the venom causes intense bleeding and bruising.

3. Timber Rattlesnake
Poisonous yet shy, this snake won’t bite unless it feels threatened. Shaking on its own rattle means one has to stay away. Bite symptoms include nausea, local pain, stomach cramping, and muscular spasms throughout the body.

4. Eastern Diamondback Rattlesnake
It is the most dangerous snake in Georgia and is the largest venomous snake in the United States. Its venom heavily destroys red blood cells that leads to tissue damage. Baby rattlers are deadlier that adults because the former has no control over the release of venom. Once bitten, spontaneous bleeding from bite size occurs, bleeding from the mouth, severe pain, among others.

5. Eastern Coral Snake
This snake is generally shy and tends to bite slowly. It doesn’t strike quickly and can easily be recognized because of its distinct color. Its toxic venom causes respiratory or cardiac failure, muscular paralysis, slurred speech and blurred vision.

6. Cottonmouth
Part of the viper family, this snake likes being around swamp areas and is active at night. Symptoms include sever and sometimes fatal injuries, discoloration of skin and changes in heart rate. It is likely for people to get frightened during a snake attack, however, one has to put in mind that it is always best to retreat and wait until the snake moves along. Let’s face it, everyone enjoys being outdoors and all we have to do is to always keep an eye of ourselves.

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