Highland moccasin, the Northern copperhead

Buy Vivid Copperhead Prints By Kathleen Chute

 Northern copperhead (Agkistrodon c. mokeson)

No one will argue that the most common of our venomous snakes here in middle

Tennessee is the copperhead. But go out and try finding one. We spent 2 years

trying to locate one of these seemingly elusive vipers. What makes them more

common than other venomous snakes is their wide range of habitat and their

ability to exist in areas  where their larger rattlesnake cousins have been long

driven out by humans. If you live in the country, chances are there is a

copperhead somewhere hunting for small rodents at some point in time. Why did it

take so long to find one of these snakes? First of all we believe that this

serpent is nocturnal in habit during the summer months   reducing the chances

of spotting one. But it may be it’s cryptic coloration that renders this snake

nearly invisible making one even harder to find. One of the largest venomous

snakes on the planet shares camouflage similar in  pattern with very similar

results. The giant African Gaboon viper

is almost impossible to see unless your looking directly at it. If you want to

hunt the forest floor you have to blend in perfectly and that’s what the

copperhead and it’s much larger African viper cousin have in common. It’s deadly

combination of stealth and striking speed make it a perfect predator.

Copperheads may be responsible for more snakebites than any other snake in their

geographic region. Gardening along with picking blackberries seem to produce

most of it’s victims. This snake is considered to be mildly venomous and most

people who are unfortunate enough to suffer a bite from one survive the bite

without requiring medical attention. Still the bite from any venomous species

should be taken seriously and medical treatment is advised. Debris piles which

include brush or log piling is a haven for rodents and copperheads can be found

among them if there is the prospect of food. Clearing these debris piles help

reduce the chances of these snakes

paying you a visit. It is unfortunate for these snakes that very few people

understand the copperhead’s role in nature as a very efficient rodent predator.

Where children and pets are present in copperhead country it is all the more

important that folks are educated about these snakes and their habits.

Eliminating the food source for copperheads may force them to look elsewhere for

a meal. The 3 things most all snakes need is food, shelter and water. My

experince with these bueatiful serpents has been that they will flee when they

feel they have been seen but will strike repeatidly if cornered and should be

avoided. Their design makes them one of the most lethal rodent predators in

nature and should be admired and respected