Snake sightings increase in Texoma

ARDMORE, Okla. (KXII) - Carter County resident Austin Normile says he found a non-venomous snake while he was mowing his yard Tuesday afternoon.

"About four and half feet long, bright green, iridescent green, had apparently just shed it's skin," Normile says describing his latest finding.
"Bright yellow belly and a pretty big mouth as you can see on the photographs."

Normile says he's used to finding snakes on his land sometimes up to 10 of them a year.

After about 35 years studying snakes, even raising pythons and red tail boa constrictors, Normile says he wasn't the least bit scared coming into contact with this one.

"If you're not familiar with any kind of snake give them a wide berth, don't kill them," Normile said. "We really need to have them around for rodent control and stuff like that so most snakes are beneficial."

Senior Wildlife and Fisheries Consultant at the Noble Research Institute, Mike Porter, says there are four types of venomous snakes in our Texoma viewing area.

"Copperhead, Cottonmouth, three species of Rattlesnake and a Coral snake," Porter lists. "If (people) learn those four types then they'll know by exclusion all the other snakes they encounter are not venomous to them. Most of them are not and the Coral snake doesn't occur in Oklahoma just in Texas."

Porter says most of the snakes are found in prairies and woodlands but could appear in people's yards especially under rocks, shrubs - places where they can find cover from the sun.

"When it gets warm like it's starting to get now they can't be out in the sun very long," Porter said. "They're ectothermic so the sun would kill them if they are out very long."

Porter says snakes are most commonly found between now and October.

You can minimize snake sightings by keeping your grass cut, not having a lot of items in the yard for them to hide in or under and always be alert.

For more information about snakes in Oklahoma, check out the Noble Research's Institute website or their live presentation at the link below.

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