Expert shares advice on staying safe during ‘copperhead season’


KINGWOOD, W.Va. (WBOY) – Late August marks the beginning of “copperhead season.”

William L. Shockey, with the WVU Preston County Agricultural Extension, said that it is important to be careful when outdoors.

“Any time you’re near where you think you might be in snake habitat, that’s anywhere where there might be a lot of rocks, heavy brush areas. You should, if possible, be wearing tall leather shoes to protect yourself from the bites,” Shockey said.

While most snakes avoid people they come into contact with, copperheads are more likely to bite.

“Copperheads will tend to become very quiet and still and lay low and wait for you, being the danger to pass by,” Shockey explained. “Which because of their coloring, they blend in very well with their surroundings. So you could very, very easily step on one or come very close to one that they would feel threatened and strike.”

Anyone bitten by a copperhead should seek treatment immediately, Shockey said.

“If you are alone, it’s probably the best thing to do to is just begin walking right away and go to get some help. By walking after a bite, you can probably walk for hours if you need to by yourself to go get assistance,” said Shockey.

Fortunately, copperhead bites are rarely life-threatening and can be treated as long as the victim receives medical attention as quickly as possible.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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