Experts explain why snake sightings are up - MSNewsNow.com - Jackson, MS

Experts explain why snake sightings are up

Experts don't believe excessive rainfall has anything to do with the appearance of more snakes. Source: WLBT Experts don't believe excessive rainfall has anything to do with the appearance of more snakes. Source: WLBT
Of the 55 different kinds of snakes in Mississippi, only six are venomous. Source: WLBT Of the 55 different kinds of snakes in Mississippi, only six are venomous. Source: WLBT
JACKSON, MS (Mississippi News Now) -

Are snake sightings up? Social media seems to be full of people showing their latest snake findings.

According to experts at the Mississippi Natural Science Museum, there are 55 species of snakes in Mississippi. And more than likely, the snakes being spotted on the move are not dangerous.

Experts don't believe excessive rainfall has anything to do with the appearance of more snakes.   

Certainly with warmer weather snake season heats up. But during flooding, snakes do come out of the woodwork, according to Megan Fedrick, the Education Coordinator for the Museum in Jackson.

Of the 55 different kinds of snakes in Mississippi, only six are venomous.

They include Rattlesnakes, Copperheads, Cottonmouth or Water Moccasin's and Coral Snakes. Head shape can prove useful in some cases but is never 100 percent reliable in determining venomous versus nonvenomous.  

Fedrick says if you have any doubts, leave the snake alone and walk away.

Don't forget, all snakes can bite. Fedrick says don't kill snakes. Why? Because nearly all snakebites take place while people are killing the snake or otherwise tormenting, capturing, skinning or handling them.  

Watch where you walk, sit or place your hands.

Snakes like to hide in stump holes, under boards and sheet metal, in brush piles and next to fallen logs. If you do encounter a snake, take two steps back and walk away from it. 

If you are bitten, call 911 and get emergency care immediately.

Mark your calendars, one of the most popular exhibits at the Natural Science Museum will be June 7.  Live snakes will be exhibited with experts on hand to answer your questions. 

The event is also Scout friendly. Girl Scouts of Greater Mississippi will earn the “MDWFP Museum of Natural Science Snake Day Patch” and Boy Scouts will meet several requirements for the “Reptile and Amphibian badge”.

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