Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Readers Write In: Good Snake or Bad Snake?

   Now that the warm weather is here to stay, I expect we will all be encountering more cold-blooded critters that are taking advantage of the reasonable temperatures. This is exciting for someone like me who enjoys spotting snakes. But, I don't expect everyone to have the same reaction.

In any case, baby snakes are emerging from their winter refuges and becoming unwanted guests just about everywhere. An encounter with one of these small creatures doesn't have to be a terrifying experience, but it helps to be able to distinguish between venomous and non-venomous species.

"My daughter found this snake near her walkway this morning. She lives in Birmingham, Alabama. Baby snakes are hard to ID...Thank you for help. I have taught my children not to kill snakes but to recognize that we share the area with them.

Paula C.
Birmingham, Alabama"

I told Paula that I didn't think there was such a thing as a bad snake* but I don't think that was a helpful tip. Esteemed readership, I leave it to you to identify this animal and tell us whether it is venomous. As always, guesses are welcome but tell us how you came to your conclusion.

* Not to discourage comments below, but I am well aware of the expression that the only good snake is a dead snake.

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