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Copperhead Snake

Source: Joy4You / Getty

If you’re spending time outdoors during snake season, it’s important to be aware of your surroundings. Here are some tips for watching out for snakes:

  1. Educate yourself: Learn about the snakes in your area, their habits, and typical habitats. Understand which ones are venomous and pose a potential threat.
  2. Wear appropriate clothing: When venturing into snake-prone areas, wear long pants, high boots, and thick socks to minimize the chances of a snake bite. Avoid sandals or open-toe shoes.
  3. Stay on designated paths: Stick to well-maintained trails and avoid tall grass, thick brush, or rocky areas where snakes may be hiding. Snakes prefer to hide in areas that provide cover, so stay on open paths whenever possible.
  4. Be observant: Keep an eye on the ground as you walk, especially in areas with rocks, logs, or dense vegetation where snakes might hide. Look for movement or any signs of snakes nearby.
  5. Use a walking stick: Carry a walking stick to probe ahead and check for snakes before stepping into an area. It can also help to create vibrations that alert snakes to your presence, giving them a chance to move away.
  6. Avoid reaching into hidden or dark areas: Be cautious when reaching into crevices, under rocks, or into bushes without proper visibility. Use a tool or stick to check before putting your hand in such areas.
  7. Don’t disturb snake habitats: Snakes are less likely to be a threat if you respect their space. Avoid disturbing their nests, dens, or hibernation sites.
  8. Watch for warning signs: Look out for warning signs or information boards in areas known for snake activity. These signs may provide specific guidance and let you know if snakes have been spotted recently.
  9. Stay calm and back away: If you encounter a snake, remain calm and slowly back away from it. Most snake bites occur when people try to handle or kill the snake.
  10. Carry a snakebite kit and know basic first aid: If you’re in an area with venomous snakes, consider carrying a snakebite kit and learn how to use it.

Remember, snakes generally want to avoid encounters with humans.