Poisonous Snakes in Georgia

Georgia is a beautiful state with lots of outdoor activities and wildlife. Unfortunately, sometimes that means we encounter creepy, crawly creatures like snakes and spiders. Most of these creatures are just living out their lives in their natural habitat and don't have a desire to harm you, but if they feel threatened you might find yourself with a bite. Learn which common Georgia snakes are poisonous and which ones you don't need to be worried about.

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    Southern Copperhead

    Southern Copperhead
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    A copperhead is a well-known type of snake and unfortunately, one you should be concerned about. Their average length is between two feet, though they can be found much longer. Their typical habitat wooded lowlands, usually within a river bottom, where they can find hiding spots in leaf litter, logs, and branches. They have adapted to humans and therefore can sometimes be found in Georgia's wooded suburbs and neighborhoods.

    How Dangerous are They?

    Southern Copperheads have short fangs, and their venom is rarely fatal. They have the lowest venom potency of any pit viper and often administer warning bites in which no venom is released. Bite symptoms include extreme pain, tingling, throbbing, swelling, and severe nausea.

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    Kristian Bell / Getty Images

    Growing up in Florida, we were always on the look out for the dreaded Cottonmouth, also known as a Water Moccasin, near the water. These snakes call Georgia home, too, and they are poisonous. Like its cousin, the Copperhead, Cottonmouth's are pit vipers. They range in size from 20 - 48 inches and can be found near any wet habitat including streams, springs, rivers, lakes, ponds, marshes, swamps, sloughs, reservoirs, retention pools, canals, and roadside ditches.

    How Dangerous are They?

    Cottonmouth bites are fairly dangerous, but lucky can be easily treated with CroFab antiserum. Seek medical attention immediately to get your dose of the antiserum. These bites can be extremely painful.

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    Canebrake Rattlesnake

    Timber Rattlesnake on Moss
    Mary Ann McDonald / Getty Images

    Two kinds of poisonous rattlesnakes can be found in Georgia, the Eastern Diamondback and the Canebrake. The Canebrake, also known as a Timber rattlesnake, is quite large - ranging from 30 - 60 inches in length. You can identify these snakes by their black rattle and the chevron pattern on their body.

    How Dangerous are They?

    These rattlesnakes have large fangs and deliver a big shot of venom. These bites can be fatal and you should seek medical attention immediately. The particular type of Canebrake that lives in Georgia has been found to be especially toxic.

    Please note that this advice is not supplied by a medical professional and is meant as a general guideline only. If you have been bitten by a snake and are experiencing symptoms, always consult a medical professional. Poison Control in Georgia can be reached at 1-800-222-1222.