Snakes on the Move

By: Stephen Bowers Email
By: Stephen Bowers Email

Snake bite. It's what many of us fear most when it comes to the slithery serpents, and some snake bites can be extremely painful and sometimes deadly.

But did you know venomous snake bites can be avoided nearly 80% of the time, if you keep one simple thing in mind?

"Just leave snakes alone. Most people get bitten because they are trying to handle a snake that they can't identify," said Dr. Jarrod Fogarty, instructor at MSU Meridian. "They don't know whether it's venomous or not. Tell your children to stay away from snakes."

Fogarty says of Mississippi's 50 or so different snake species, only 6 or 7 are dangerous. And they usually let you know when you're too close. Rattlesnakes rattle, and water moccasins, frequently called cottonmouths, will put on a show of their own.

We live in an area that is mostly rural which makes avoiding snakes almost impossible. So what should you do when you encounter them?

"People who can't identify snakes and don't know how to handle venomous snakes shouldn't be doing it. So get in touch with someone who can. That's the best advice," said Fogarty.

As the weather continues to warm, the snakes will be coming out more and more. One thing to remember, though, is that snakes, such as a king snake, are good to have around because they will help keep the more dangerous snakes away.

Of course, snake bites will happen, and that's when you should head to the emergency room. But before you get there, here's some advice.

"Try to not be up moving around much," said Dr. Mark Miskelly, emergency medical director at Rush Hospital. "It's usually a limb that's bitten, a hand or leg. Elevate the limb. Put ice on it. Really don't do anything beyond that."

With quick medical attention most snake bite victims survive.

You must be logged in to post comments.

Password (case sensitive):
Remember Me:

Read Comments

Comments are posted from viewers like you and do not always reflect the views of this station.
  • by tina Location: meridian,ms on Apr 20, 2010 at 08:12 PM
    The best thing to do when you discover a snake is to never try to strike at a snake.Most snakes are dangerous and teach kids about snakes and their surrondings.
WTOK-TV 815 23rd Ave Meridian, Ms. 39301 Phone: (601) 693-1441
Copyright © 2002-2016 - Designed by Gray Digital Media - Powered by Clickability 91657174 -
Gray Television, Inc.