(WKBN) -The Ohio Division of Wildlife (ODW) is asking everyone to be aware that snakes exist with us and are very important to our ecosystem. Wildlife experts don’t want you to be afraid.
In a post on its Facebook page Tuesday, wildlife experts said that too many snakes are killed just because people fear them.
Ohio has three venomous species: Eastern Copperhead, Massasauga and Timber rattlesnake.
See the slideshow for each species and where they are usually located:
Most snakes lie motionless and use their camouflage to remain undetected before fleeing or defending themselves.
An average of six people die of snakebites annually in the United States. Considerably more people are killed by dog bites and lightning, according to the ODW.
Several Ohio snake species are regularly misidentified as venomous water moccasin or cottonmouth. The cottonmouth does not occur in Ohio.
To steer clear of venomous snakes keep in mind that the heat-sensitive pits in front of and below each eye of Ohio’s three venomous snakes are capable of detecting extremely small increases in air temperature some distance from the snake’s face. For that reason, be careful climbing rocks or slopes where the snakes live.
If you are bitten by a venomous snake, you could develop mild swelling, discoloration, and pain at the wound site, and may also experience general tingling, weakness, rapid pulse, dimness of vision, nausea, vomiting, and shortness of breath.
Most who die of snake bites usually waited too long to get medical help. Get to a hospital right away and call the Poison Help Hotline at 1-800-222-1222.
The best defense is to know which snakes are venomous and know where you might encounter them so you can avoid contact.