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People Should Avoid Disturbing Snakes

Tuesday, Nov. 10, 2020
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The copperhead is the most common venomous snake in North Carolina.

The Town of Hillsborough asks those using the trails and parks to leave snakes where they are.

Recently snakes have been spotted on the Riverwalk greenway. Public Space Manager Stephanie Trueblood advises that people leave some distance between themselves and the snake.

“Snakes are very common in our area. At this time of year, they are on the move,” said Trueblood. “We all need to keep a lookout and avoid disturbing them. They generally will not bother anyone if left alone. Snakes are a necessary and important part of the ecosystem.”

Snakes are cold-blooded and are attracted to pavement when it has been warmed by the sun.

If given the opportunity, snakes will usually attempt to escape when a person or animal approaches.

The copperhead is the most common venomous snake in our area and should be avoided. Most bites occur when people attempt to kill or remove the snake. Striking is a defensive behavior when the snake feels it has no means of escape. The snake may first strike in the direction of the person or animal as a warning without making contact.

Copperhead venom is less potent than that of other North American venomous snakes. While copperhead bites are rarely fatal, they can cause tissue damage, infections and extreme pain. Medical attention should be sought immediately.

For more information about copperheads, see the fact sheet below from the North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission.

Related documents


Document Wildlife Resources Commission copperheads fact sheet