CUPD: Venomous and non-venomous snakes are active this time of year; know the difference
A copperhead snake struck at a student who was walking on the sidewalk Thursday from the C-1 parking lot. The student was not bitten and there is no need to be alarmed, but it is a good time to remind you of some general information about snakes from Clemson’s Department of Forestry and Environmental Conservation:
Most snakes in the Southeast are non-venomous and completely harmless. We have only two venomous species in the Upstate (copperheads and timber rattlesnakes). There are several online guides available to help you tell the difference between venomous and non-venomous snakes. One is here: http://bit.ly/23KJnX4
If you encounter a snake and do not know what species it is, you should not pick it up or interact with it. Many snakebites result from someone trying to move or harm a snake. Most snakes are beneficial and help control the rodent population.
When walking on sidewalks or spending time in the woods or in places with rock piles, brush piles or stacked firewood, it’s always a good idea to look where you are placing your hands and feet beforehand.
If you are bitten by a snake, stay calm and remember that most snakes are not venomous and bites from venomous snakes in the U.S. are rarely fatal. If you believe the bite came from a venomous snake:
- Move away from the snake
- Remove any tight-fitting jewelry or clothing in case swelling occurs
- Clean the wound but do not otherwise attempt to remove the venom
- Seek treatment at the nearest emergency medical facility