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Thread: Copperheads

  1. #21
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    We have cotton mouth, copper heads, and a couple different rattle snakes in this county. We have a varied habitat that runs from dry hills to cypress swamps and farm land. My home is down near the swamps, so naturally we have cotton mouths around. Fortunately they do tend to stay in the swamps near water and avoid human habitation. It seems that the rattlers in this part of the country tend to avoid human habitation as well. Copper heads, on the other hand, are comfortable around habitation, and even farm animals. We never saw a rattler on the hills we ran cattle on, but the next fam over would have them on it, same habitat but no cattle tramping around. We would run across copper heads quite often on these same farms. My Dad had a 4 foot cane break rattler in his yard a few years ago, but there was logging going on near and probably displaced him, but he had a couple of copper heads take up residence under his porch a few years ago. Fortunately he happened to see one's head poking out one morning and gave them a rather loud eviction notice! Having dealt with all three I do find copper heads the least aggressive of the three, not any more aggressive than a gray rat snake. About any snake will bite you if you muck with them or step on them, and the ones with fangs cause more trouble!

  2. #22
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    Ole cotton mouth will come for you if you get in his territory, we hogged[noodled] in the Middle fork of the Obion river when was in high school and they would come in the water after us, we just let the current take them down stream.

  3. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Thundarstick View Post
    We have cotton mouth, copper heads, and a couple different rattle snakes in this county. We have a varied habitat that runs from dry hills to cypress swamps and farm land. My home is down near the swamps, so naturally we have cotton mouths around. Fortunately they do tend to stay in the swamps near water and avoid human habitation. It seems that the rattlers in this part of the country tend to avoid human habitation as well. Copper heads, on the other hand, are comfortable around habitation, and even farm animals. We never saw a rattler on the hills we ran cattle on, but the next fam over would have them on it, same habitat but no cattle tramping around. We would run across copper heads quite often on these same farms. My Dad had a 4 foot cane break rattler in his yard a few years ago, but there was logging going on near and probably displaced him, but he had a couple of copper heads take up residence under his porch a few years ago. Fortunately he happened to see one's head poking out one morning and gave them a rather loud eviction notice! Having dealt with all three I do find copper heads the least aggressive of the three, not any more aggressive than a gray rat snake. About any snake will bite you if you muck with them or step on them, and the ones with fangs cause more trouble!
    I knew of the copperheads and cotton mouths but I never thought we had rattlers here but a few years ago they killed a decent sized one on the flight line. On my property where I hunt I've seen the other two but never a rattler, or I'd start looking for a good size rattle, always wanted one of those.
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  4. #24
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    I spend quite a bit of time in the Obion river WMA and until it gets cold you had better watch where you put your feet for sure! If you get into those bluff hills you'd be wise to do the same!

  5. #25
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    Copperheads are fairly rare here. We have many times the number of Canebreak (Timber) rattlers and eastern Diamondacks. We also have a very good quota of Cottomounths, too, mostly in the low lying places and the swamps around the river. And BTW, any of these snakes CAN bite under water. Dad and an old friend were fishing one day here, and catching some outsized bluegill and redbreast sunfish. Louis, Dad's friend, got one, and in the current, those things fight hard! They were running an average of 1 1/4 lb . each! All of a sudden, the "fish" started pulling like crazy, and running all over the water, side to side! Then it finally went limp again, and he reeled in, saying he thought he had some moss on the hook. He got it in, and it was another dark bluegill of about 1 1/4 lbs. But this one had two fang marks, oozing yellowish oily stuff from each hole. They were about 2" or more apart. They realized a cottonmouth had bit the fish and tried to take it away from him. They tossed it in the ice chest, but later threw it out and washed the other fish off very, very well.

    Also, my young pup Shelly got bit by a copperhead recently. It seemed to be a grazing sort of bite. She's extremely quick, and nervous and on edge around snakes. She just got too close to this one, and got bit on the left side of the muzzle, half way between the eye and nose. A knot swelled up about like a marble under the skin in about 10 minutes. I thought she'd just gotten bit by a bee or something again, since the symptoms are similar at that stage. The next day, the swelling increased and worked its way down to the jowls/throat area. The next day it went down to the throat near the junction with the shoulders. She moped around for a while, and was obviously stressed, but she made it through it. She's 1/2 Llewellyn setter, and 1/2 fice mix, and weighs about 30 lbs. soaking wet. Now, she won't go out into the back half of our large back yard, which is wooded with flowers and shrubs all through it. She stays on the grass half, and I can't blame her. She got a good scare from a relatively light bite, I believe. A copperhead is a bad dude, and could easily kill her, I believe.

    One thing about copperheads I've noted: They seem to be just a mite quicker in striking than rattlers, and I believe they inject a greater percentage of venom than rattlesnakes sometimes do. I think of them as little snakes with a little snake's complex. They have long seemed a little more ready to bite than a rattler. Rattlers seem to desire just being left alone, or a few warning strikes. They're king of the hill and don't seem to need to prove anything.

    And the original poster is right. They sure are pretty, especially when they've just shed. The last one we killed here (or grass cutters killed it actually) was the one that bit Shelly. It was probably a little short of 3' long. Even one that small could conceivably kill a full grown adult human, though, if caught out in the swamps and unable to get to a hospital quickly. In my neck of the woods, "snake-proof boots" are standard. I've never worn them. Tried them on and they were so stiff, heavy and uncomfortable, that I just couldn't see lugging them around the woods for up to 20 miles a day of hiking! So .... I had to learn to be VERY careful and CONSISTENT in looking where I put my feet. Even so, I've nearly been bit twice by rattlers. That'll refresh your memory about watching one's step, for SURE!

    Y'all be careful out there. Once bitten, there's no do-overs. You just go to the hospital and prepare yourself for some very unpleasant times!

  6. #26
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    Lots of copperheads around here some years, like last year. I killed 5 in my wood pile. Must have been some ol' witch got in there and had her litter because they were all the same size. Evidently she came back this year because I killed 3 in one shotgun blast, all the same size. We have what I assume to be either the timber rattler or eastern diamondback but in 60 years of running the woods I've never seen one.

    Copperheads do seem to me to be rather laid back. You can uncover one and walk in the house to get some kind of firearm, come back and it is usually still there....til it gets a dose of lead poisoning. They are rather pretty but not pretty enough to let live at my house or in my woods.
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  7. #27
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    My Red Bone coon hound was bitten on the leg by a copperhead. Wife called the vet and he said not much he could do for him; just give him a couple of Benedril every few hours. Took a few days, but he made it ok. More of them around here than rattlers. High brass No 6 shot works good on 'em.

  8. #28
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    I was under the impression a copperheads bite is worse then a rattlers. Is that wrong?
    Quote Originally Posted by Blackwater View Post
    Copperheads are fairly rare here. We have many times the number of Canebreak (Timber) rattlers and eastern Diamondacks. We also have a very good quota of Cottomounths, too, mostly in the low lying places and the swamps around the river. And BTW, any of these snakes CAN bite under water. Dad and an old friend were fishing one day here, and catching some outsized bluegill and redbreast sunfish. Louis, Dad's friend, got one, and in the current, those things fight hard! They were running an average of 1 1/4 lb . each! All of a sudden, the "fish" started pulling like crazy, and running all over the water, side to side! Then it finally went limp again, and he reeled in, saying he thought he had some moss on the hook. He got it in, and it was another dark bluegill of about 1 1/4 lbs. But this one had two fang marks, oozing yellowish oily stuff from each hole. They were about 2" or more apart. They realized a cottonmouth had bit the fish and tried to take it away from him. They tossed it in the ice chest, but later threw it out and washed the other fish off very, very well.

    Also, my young pup Shelly got bit by a copperhead recently. It seemed to be a grazing sort of bite. She's extremely quick, and nervous and on edge around snakes. She just got too close to this one, and got bit on the left side of the muzzle, half way between the eye and nose. A knot swelled up about like a marble under the skin in about 10 minutes. I thought she'd just gotten bit by a bee or something again, since the symptoms are similar at that stage. The next day, the swelling increased and worked its way down to the jowls/throat area. The next day it went down to the throat near the junction with the shoulders. She moped around for a while, and was obviously stressed, but she made it through it. She's 1/2 Llewellyn setter, and 1/2 fice mix, and weighs about 30 lbs. soaking wet. Now, she won't go out into the back half of our large back yard, which is wooded with flowers and shrubs all through it. She stays on the grass half, and I can't blame her. She got a good scare from a relatively light bite, I believe. A copperhead is a bad dude, and could easily kill her, I believe.

    One thing about copperheads I've noted: They seem to be just a mite quicker in striking than rattlers, and I believe they inject a greater percentage of venom than rattlesnakes sometimes do. I think of them as little snakes with a little snake's complex. They have long seemed a little more ready to bite than a rattler. Rattlers seem to desire just being left alone, or a few warning strikes. They're king of the hill and don't seem to need to prove anything.

    And the original poster is right. They sure are pretty, especially when they've just shed. The last one we killed here (or grass cutters killed it actually) was the one that bit Shelly. It was probably a little short of 3' long. Even one that small could conceivably kill a full grown adult human, though, if caught out in the swamps and unable to get to a hospital quickly. In my neck of the woods, "snake-proof boots" are standard. I've never worn them. Tried them on and they were so stiff, heavy and uncomfortable, that I just couldn't see lugging them around the woods for up to 20 miles a day of hiking! So .... I had to learn to be VERY careful and CONSISTENT in looking where I put my feet. Even so, I've nearly been bit twice by rattlers. That'll refresh your memory about watching one's step, for SURE!

    Y'all be careful out there. Once bitten, there's no do-overs. You just go to the hospital and prepare yourself for some very unpleasant times!
    Soldier of God, sixgun junky, Retired electrical lineman. My office was a 100 feet in the air, closer to God the better

  9. #29
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    Rattlesnake bite will kill you left untreated. Your chance of survival without medical attention is slim to none. Copperhead in most cases causes great discomfort, but will rarely kill you even without medical attention. It does happen now and again, it is the opposite, your chance of dying is slim. A few rattlesnake species are neuro-toxic and hemo-toxic. That is a witch's brew.
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  10. #30
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    That's dead on. Copperheads have been known to strike and inject very little to no venom. We get a few copperhead bites at the hospital every year and can't remember any of them getting anti venom, most of the time it's just steroids. The worst bite I've seen around here was some druggie putting a cottonmouth in another druggies mailbox for some sort of payback. That snake was good and pissed off when he got loose and clamped down on dude's arm and probably have him the whole nine yards. He nearly lost the arm! Most of the time a copperhead bite is equivalent to being stung by a dozen red wasp.

  11. #31
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    I have all of them here, plus the coral snake. Red on black is a friend of Jack, red on yellow will kill a fellow.
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  12. #32
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    The Coral snake is uber, kill you dead toxic, but it has tiny fangs so it is not likely to do much damage. Just cannot deliver.
    "Had his shooting been as good as his running, he might have given a better account of himself."
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  13. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by farmerjim View Post
    I have all of them here, plus the coral snake. Red on black is a friend of Jack, red on yellow will kill a fellow.
    Arkansas also has all 4 of the poisonous snakes known to be in the US. I only remember seeing 1 Coral snake. We have plenty of the other 3 at deer camp. Makes for an interesting Squirrel hunt in the early fall!

  14. #34
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    that's the one I was thinking about.
    Quote Originally Posted by farmerjim View Post
    I have all of them here, plus the coral snake. Red on black is a friend of Jack, red on yellow will kill a fellow.
    Soldier of God, sixgun junky, Retired electrical lineman. My office was a 100 feet in the air, closer to God the better

  15. #35
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    Lightman, I grew up just south of Pine Bluff, so we have covered some of the same territory. I don't think you will have to worry about looking out for copperheads, you will be busy enough looking out for cottonmouths to see anything else that crawls or walks nearby. I agree with you- the only really rare poisonous snake in our parts is the coral snake. Plenty of the rest to go around, and more cottonmouths/water moccasins than you can shake a stick at.

  16. #36
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    Copperheads

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ID:	228895 Here in Conroe Texas our Copperhead snakes do seem to be rather timid unless provoked. They do love to eat Cicadas as they are emerging from the ground under our white oak trees. There are no emergent holes under the pine trees that I have found. Last year I learned about that and went out each night about 9:30 pm and looked for them..... Found them . Killed 12 in close to two weeks . After that couldn't find any. This year have not found that many. One got away in my water well house in around the pipes and I didn't shoot. It was the biggest. Yeah the big ones get away., That right fishermen?
    list of Copper head bites 2017
    Sister in law .... Bit on right knuckle middle finger. Went to hospital. They gave her Benydryll. Sent home next evening.
    Duke the Super 30 lb. Rat Terrier ... left lower leg.. found him couldn't move anything but his eyes....Gave Be..ryll OK next day Got bit again on the upper lip. not much swelling and got the Benydryll earlier this time.
    2018 Little Lilly 16 lb Rat Terrier Got bit lower lip.. swelling came fast.. Benydryll given ... breathing became labored.. installed a bigger ballpoint pen case in trachea. She relaxed and breathed normal..... this may not be agreed with by everyone, but using a hypodermic needle ( antiseptic) alcohol swab drew out a lot of odd colored fluid from the swelled area then removed the T tube and she could breathe normally.
    Last week Lilly was helping as I was restacking some tin neatly and stuck her head under the tin and got bit on the upper lip. Got the Benydryll faster this time. This was about 11 am and we could watch her without being up all night. She got OK. I am worried about her as she is now 58 days pregnant..
    KIlled a Coral Snake at the deer lease last week. That tallies up to Seven Coral snakes since the year 2000.
    Killed a huge Cottonmouth at another lease last year. .357 boom no head
    We have several non venomous snakes, the Texas Rat Snake doing the most damage. Stupid snake get in the quail pen and kills a few and swallows them, then can't get out of the pen. They will eat all the eggs they find. Baby chickens are a top notch meal for them at about six babies at at time and as the chicks get bigger they all get eaten. Fifteen hatched.
    One remedy is to go snake fishing. Holes in the egg,, blow out the egg .. refill w/water 5/0 stainless hook w/ 80lb test spider wire tied to something solid. Super Glue a fitted eggshell over the holes. We put golf balls, small light bulbs, or wooden fake eggs that get stuck in the snake and it can't get rid of it. Same with the golf ball. Snake is sick unto death. You can see the golf ball in the snake picture.Click image for larger version. 

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  17. #37
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    We only have copper headed rattle mocacines here. It's a daycare facility and we don't abide them regardless of color or size.
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  18. #38
    Boolit Buddy OldBearHair's Avatar
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    Moldmaker, you reminded me of the hunt four of us went on at Aransas Pass Wildlife Refuge in Texas. We were seeing lots of snakes. A reporter from the Fort Worth Star Telegram was there doing a story for bowhunting deer and pigs. His article mentioned a rattlesnake that he called Copperheaded rattle moccasin. Circa 1966. We saw one and everyone was talking about them having a white mouth and slightly copper on the head. Everyone should know by now how us Texans get to exaggerating at times.
    Oh, that rat snake in the upper picture was so sick he only had a few hours of life left until I reduced it to seconds. He was stuck in a fork in a Holly tree about head high and not very active.
    Last edited by OldBearHair; 10-15-2018 at 07:00 PM. Reason: additional statement

  19. #39
    Boolit Master LAH's Avatar
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    Lived with copperheads most my life. They are a very beautiful snake. In fact I named my hide away such.
    Last edited by LAH; 10-16-2018 at 07:14 PM.
    Joshua 1:9

  20. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by OldBearHair View Post
    Moldmaker, you reminded me of the hunt four of us went on at Aransas Pass Wildlife Refuge in Texas. We were seeing lots of snakes. A reporter from the Fort Worth Star Telegram was there doing a story for bowhunting deer and pigs. His article mentioned a rattlesnake that he called Copperheaded rattle moccasin. Circa 1966. We saw one and everyone was talking about them having a white mouth and slightly copper on the head. Everyone should know by now how us Texans get to exaggerating at times.
    Oh, that rat snake in the upper picture was so sick he only had a few hours of life left until I reduced it to seconds. He was stuck in a fork in a Holly tree about head high and not very active.
    Must be the snake catch, but that triangular head sure makes it look poisonous.
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