Kevin Patrick Allen  – Missouri New Service

It’s being called a byproduct of heavy rains in Missouri earlier this year – snake bites are on the rise.

The state is home to five types of venomous snakes: copperhead, water moccasin, timber rattler, pygmy rattler and massasauga rattler. The most common is the copperhead.

Julie Weber, director of the Missouri Poison Control Center, says the places that snakes prefer to live became flooded.

“And they were seeking drier habitats and, unfortunately, kind of leaving more of the wooded areas and going up into yards and garages and driveways,” she says.

Forty-five snake bites were reported in the month of June. Eighteen of those bites were from copperheads. July is typically the busiest month for the poison center.

Deaths from venomous snake bites in Missouri are very rare. Weber says she only knows of three that were reported over the course of many years.

Weber says one of the two most common ways that Missourians are bitten is entirely preventable. That’s when people try to grab or capture snakes.

~ Find out more in today’s Journal ~