The Carolinas Poison Center, which offers assistance to venomous snake bite victims and the doctors who treat them, has reported a near quadrupling in North Carolina snake bite incidents compared to this time last year.
According to a report filed by WLOS, the center received 71 calls throughout the month of April 2017. Compare that to the 19 calls the center received in April of last year.
If venomous snake bites continue at the current rate, the state could see upwards of 500 incidents for the year.
Some have speculated that the uptick in snake bites can be traced back to the mild winter the region experienced in late 2016 and early 2017.
Venomous snakes native to North Carolina and much of the Southeast include copperheads, cottonmouths, rattlesnakes (Eastern diamondback, pygmy, and timber), and the coral snake.
As evidenced in the following Twitter post from user @sssnakeysci, copperheads can be extremely difficult to spot when they match their surroundings.
Received this from a fellow HERper this morning. No caption needed, the task was implied: “can you spot the snake?” 🐍 pic.twitter.com/oVkjOm8ufy
— Helen🐍👩🏼🔬 (@SssnakeySci) April 23, 2017
If y’all haven’t found it yet… Copperhead, aka Agkistrodon contortrix. Cute but venomous, so no touchy! ☺️🐍❤️ pic.twitter.com/pSVMIhFP0o
— Helen🐍👩🏼🔬 (@SssnakeySci) April 24, 2017
If you or someone you know is bitten by a venomous snake in North Carolina contact the Carolinas Poison Center at 1-800-222-1222 or call the National Capital Poison Center switchboard at 1-800-222-1222.