Watch out for snakes.

Discussion in 'General Conversation' started by wishiwasfishin, Apr 21, 2006.

  1. wishiwasfishin

    wishiwasfishin New Member

    Messages:
    776
    State:
    kentucky
    i copied this from a kentucky snake site but it's always good to keep in mind.


    Length
    The first question to ask is, "How long is the snake?" Imagine how long the snake is when it is stretched out. For example, small land snakes like the redbelly, brown, ring-necked, earthworm, and Southeastern crowned snake rarely get over 12 to 16" long. Medium sized snakes typically range from 18" to 3' in length. These might include garter snakes, ribbon snakes, green snakes, queen snake, milk snakes and kingsnakes. The large snakes can often obtain sizes in excess of 3' and would include rattlesnakes, rat snakes, watersnakes, coachwhips, black racers, and cottonmouths.
    Body Shape
    The next question to ask concerns body shape. "Is the body slender, or is it thick and heavy?" Examples of a slender snake would be the ribbon snake whereas an example of a stout snake might be a cottonmouth.
    Head & Neck Shape
    Next look at the head. Does it have a broad head? A medium sized head (a little larger than the body)? Or does it not appear to have a head? Many of the small land snakes do not appear to have any significant head whereas species like the garter snake have a medium sized head. Water snakes, cottonmouth, Eastern hog-nose, and rattlesnakes all have large heads. Folklore has it that if the snakes' head is shaped like an arrowhead it is venomous. While it is true that pit vipers (these are the only poisonous snakes in Kentucky) do have heads that might have an arrowhead shape, many nonvenomous species may flatten their heads into the arrowhead shape when they feel threatened. Therefore this is not a good characteristic to tell the difference between poisonous and non-poisonous snakes.
    Color & Pattern
    The most useful field identification characteristics to use in identifying snakes are their color and patterns. Some snakes like the rough green snake are easy to identify because they are the only bright green colored snakes that occur in Kentucky. Corn snakes are bright orange and scarlet snakes are bright red. Look at the color of the snake carefully. Is it really black or dark brown? Is it dark gray or brown? Patterns are also very helpful. For instance many snakes have no discernable pattern at all. The earth snake and black racer are good examples of snakes that are generally one color with no lines, blotches, or bands. Some snakes have a head that has a different color from the body. The southeastern crowned and ring-neck snakes are excellent examples of this type of pattern. The coachwhip is an example of a multicolor pattern where the color gradually blends from one to another with no distinctive pattern. The garter, ribbon, and queen snakes are examples of species that have linear stripes running the length of the body. The final pattern to look for is a snake that has spots, blotches, or bands. Species that may exhibit this type of pattern include the rattlesnakes, copperhead, corn snake, rat snake, milk snakes, water snakes, kingsnakes, pine snake, cottonmouth, and brown snake.
    Scale Texture
    If you are still having difficulty identifying the snake you may want to look at the scale texture, tail scales, and the anal plate division. Some snakes have scales that are rough (or have a ridge on them). Snakes that have no rough (keeled) scales are often quite shiny in appearance. As a general rule we do not have any snakes in Kentucky with strongly rough scales. Some species with mild keeled scales include the rat snake, corn snake, copperhead, and cottonmouth. Most of our snakes have smooth scales.
    Eye Pupil Shape
    An easy method of telling the difference between a venomous or poisonous versus a non-poisonous snake is to look at the shape of the pupil. Non-poisonous snakes all have a round pupil (in the center of the eye) whereas all poisonous snakes have a vertical elliptical (cat-like) shaped pupil. All pit-vipers (poisonous) also have a small hole (pit) between the nostril and the eye.
    Anal Plate Division
    The anal plate on a snake is the last body scale on the underside or belly. One good identification characteristic is to determine if the snakes' anal plate has one scale or is it divided into two scales. You can not use the anal plate to tell the difference between poisonous and non- poisonous snakes. You can use the tail scales to determine if a snake is poisonous. The pit vipers (poisonous) have a single row of scales under the tail beginning at the vent. Near the end of the tail, the single row will change into a double row. All others have single tail scales.
     
  2. wishiwasfishin

    wishiwasfishin New Member

    Messages:
    776
    State:
    kentucky
    but let me add if your like me when you see a snake your to busy high stepping the other way to really care:)
     

  3. FS Driver

    FS Driver New Member

    Messages:
    2,323
    State:
    swansea,illinoi
    thats a very helpful post ,
    like what was said after it you gotta be all up in the snakes business to
    find out what they are.
    if im goin fishin i leave em be .
    if one is in my direct vicinity and is apt to cause me harm getting clear i'll dust em;)
    and say too bad so sad.
     
  4. back channel

    back channel Member

    Messages:
    231
    State:
    Pittsburgh, PA
    I can really care less about snakes when I fish. I have even fished two feet away from a snake pitt. It was a real good fishing spot so I could not pass it up. You know you have to put your fishing priorities first. :big_smile_2:
     
  5. wishiwasfishin

    wishiwasfishin New Member

    Messages:
    776
    State:
    kentucky
    lol.now i have had some good fishing holes but dang man it must be awesome. i guess i'd half to sit back and make very,very long cast at it:)
     
  6. derbycitycatman

    derbycitycatman Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    5,299
    State:
    Kentucky
    Name:
    your first name
    Aint no fishing good enough to get me to fish in sight of a snake pit. Good post too, Ive always heard about the cats eye and the head bigger than the body. Thats about all I go on but to be honest I treat every snake as if its venomous. I aint touching em.
     
  7. wishiwasfishin

    wishiwasfishin New Member

    Messages:
    776
    State:
    kentucky
    i hear ya. i try to go around them if i can but i have to say most of the time they seem to be more worried about me then i am of them. so we both high tail it the opposite direction:)
     
  8. pursuing_cats

    pursuing_cats New Member

    Messages:
    247
    State:
    Clarksville,Tennessee
    Ok, I understand snakes have a purpose in life and I really do not care for them. With that being said, the only time I am going to try and identify a snake is after I kill it. Then my identification goes like this. It was a dead snake. I HATE SNAKES and will give up a great fishing spot or hunting spot just to get away from them.
     
  9. LarryS

    LarryS New Member

    Messages:
    133
    State:
    Clinton,Il
    They taste like Chicken you know?
     
  10. catseeman

    catseeman New Member

    Messages:
    1,189
    State:
    Indianapolis, Indiana
    Jess I hope you don't do that to me. Imight break your waist when i kill that snake . are you the man with the forked fingernail? no wonder you like snakes so much hahaha. oh yea thanks for the thread i like to know more about things that scare the devil out of me . it really helps i keep telling my self that anyway.
     
  11. Kentucky Boy

    Kentucky Boy New Member

    Messages:
    34
    State:
    Kentucky
    Thats helpful with the info on the snakes, but I think you are mistaken about the pit viper being the only poisenous snake in KY. We kill copperheads all the time in Daviess and Ohio County, and have killed a few rattlers as well in the timbers we cleared out. The sheriff said there have been a few water moccasins killed too, but haven't seen any first hand. The info you gave was very good to know though. thanks

    chris
     
  12. wishiwasfishin

    wishiwasfishin New Member

    Messages:
    776
    State:
    kentucky
    ummm don't know yeah i know there are copperheads and a few rattlesnakes running around kentucky.i have never seen a rattlesnake but i have a few copperheads and water moccasins or at least i think they were i was to busy trying to get out of the way:)
     
  13. wishiwasfishin

    wishiwasfishin New Member

    Messages:
    776
    State:
    kentucky
    now see after you put that snake down we would have to fight but not until you put him down:)
     
  14. tanisha418

    tanisha418 New Member

    Messages:
    5
  15. Hootowlc3

    Hootowlc3 New Member

    Messages:
    409
    State:
    Florida
    If you show me a snake please don't be holding in front of you when you do. Led penetrates slap through a snake.
     
  16. kbgrillin

    kbgrillin New Member

    Messages:
    862
    State:
    Tennessee
    A snake is a snake. It don't matter what size it is, or how long it is. I don't care if it has square eyes and a pink tail, I ain't gittin close enough to it to see if it is poisinous or not. And fishin' by a snake pitt, ARE YOU CRAZY.:crazy:
     
  17. explayer

    explayer New Member

    Messages:
    372
    State:
    Tucson AZ

    I am with you get me a gun and quick
     
  18. kspor

    kspor New Member

    Messages:
    716
    State:
    Wichita Kansas
    Thanks for the great information. I dont kill snakes just to kill them, but I do let them have a happy distance.
     
  19. kyblue49

    kyblue49 New Member

    Messages:
    77
    State:
    kentucky
    i could care less what their eyes look like, if i see one im going the other way, lifes to short to play with snakes.
     
  20. back channel

    back channel Member

    Messages:
    231
    State:
    Pittsburgh, PA
    Come on know snakes are not that bad. I am used to them because when I was younger I used to go catch all kinds of snakes up to 3 feet. As long as you know how to handle them and you if one is by you and don't bother them then you will be fine. Even though I live is a populated city there are some big snakes upwards of five feet in the woods by my house. How do I know there are some that big? There was one that was streched out a long side my house. It was the biggest dam gardner snake I have ever seen.