Sunday, March 25, 2007
Encountered this snake yesterday while hiking in Greene County. It's an Eastern Garter Snake, which is fairly common in Tennessee, and thankfully non-venomous. In all my years of hiking, this is only the third snake I can recall seeing. The others were a Ringnecked Snake and a Black Racer. There are poisonous snakes in Tennessee, notably the Copperhead and Timber Rattler -- and it's important to be able to identify these critters. The most obvious method is that all venomous snakes in Tennessee have elliptical (cat-eyed) shaped pupils. Here is a neat site that helps you identify the snakes you might encounter in North Carolina. While there are 8,000 to 12,000 snakebites in the US each year, only 12-15 deaths occur. This site reports that only four people in Tennessee have died from snakebites since 1960. The good news is that the snakes you'll find in this area are generally shy and non-aggressive.
Labels: Reptiles and Amphibians