Venomous Snake Removal
Nuisance Snake Concerns
While snakes can actually play a beneficial role in the environment, eating and eliminating small rodents and other vermin, many people are not comfortable with having snakes, especially these venomous kinds, anywhere near their property. This aversion comes with good reason. The presence of any kind of venomous snake in or around a home or business poses a very serious threat that puts everyone in the area at risk, especially small children, and pets.
Venomous snakes may not cause any environmental or property damage, but they are a huge threat to our population’s health. Every Florida resident should be able to identify a venomous snake.
Venomous Snake Toxins
Venomous snakes are not known to cause any sort of damage to the physical structures in which they live around. It is their presence that causes the problems and will put everyone in danger. They are a necessary part of nature, but they can pose serious health risks to people and animals alike. The venom that they release during a bite can be deadly. There are three main types of venom that venomous snakes will have, but only two of them are found in the snakes that are native to Florida. They all do something different to the person or animal they bite, but they are all dangerous.
Hemotoxic venom is one type of venom that is common in the venomous snakes of Florida. The various rattlesnakes, copperheads, and cottonmouths are all armed with this type of venom. This venom causes hemolysis, which is the breakdown of the red blood cells in the body. It disrupts the body’s ability to clot cause major bleeding from organs and orifices of the body. It will cause major tissue damage throughout the body and will cause massive organ failure. The venom helps with the digestive process for the snakes as it will begin the process for them before the prey animal is consumed.
Neurotoxin is another type of snake venom and it can be found in the coral snakes like the eastern coral snake. This toxin attacks the nervous system when a person or animal is bitten. This venom will start out causing paralysis in localized areas and then the paralysis will spread as the venom spreads throughout the body. It can cause death when it paralyzes the diaphragm because paralyzing the diaphragm will result in respiratory failure. The snakes are armed with this venom so that they can immobilize their prey, so they can eat them without being harmed or injured.
When a person is bitten by a venomous snake time is of the essence. These venoms can cause serious damage to a person’s or animal’s body and without medical attention, death is a serious possibility. There is also a good chance that there will be lasting effects of the bite but those effects can be kept to a minimum with fast-acting medical treatment. Venomous snakes are dangerous animals to be living alongside but they are a part of the environment that we have to learn to deal with and learn to watch out for when we are in our yards or hiking.
Florida is prime real estate for some of the most dangerous and aggressive snakes in the world, including the Eastern Diamondback Rattlesnake (Crotalus adamanteus), the Pygmy Rattlesnake (Sistrurus miliarius), and the Cottonmouth (Agkistrodon piscivorus). All three snakes are part of the same sub-family of venomous vipers known as “pit vipers”. This group is distinguished and set apart by a single common characteristic: the presence of an extremely sensitive heat-sensing pit organ located between the eye and the nostril on either side of the head. This is a versatile group of snakes, and are found in almost every county in the state. Mostly nocturnal, these snakes prefer to avoid high daytime temperatures and hunt when their target prey is also most active. They are ovoviviparous, which mean females give birth to live young. Usually broods consist of 10 to 20 young, with lifespans of 15 to 20 years.
Common Venomous Florida Snakes
Eastern Diamondback Rattlesnake
Gets its name from the diamond pattern of its scales. Triangular shaped head with a very light colored stripe that starts at the corner of the mouth and wraps around to the back of its head. Signature rattle on end of the tail. 4-6 ft. full grown.
Color patterns can vary depending on its habitat. They will have uniform patches that run down the entire length of the body in various colors, from black and blue to dark green, and even shades of red and brown. Also has a very small and quiet rattle on the tail. 14-22 inches full grown.
Also known as the water moccasin. Semi-aquatic and usually near water. Triangular head and mostly brown. Often mistaken for brown watersnake. Unlike other water snakes, Cottonmouth bodies will remain mostly visible while swimming. 4-6 ft. full grown.