Wildlife Task Force specializes in the removal of any type of Florida’s native and non-native snakes. There are a wide variety of snakes in Southwest Florida, from the harmless black racer, to the deadly Eastern Diamond Back Rattlesnake. All of the employees at Wildlife Task Force are trained and experienced with handling any kind of snake and in any situation.
One of the most common types of snakes that you might come across in Southwest Florida will most likely be the Common Black Racer. These snakes are non-venomous but can still deliver a nasty bite if cornered. Although encounters with venomous snakes are rare, it can happen anywhere at anytime! The most common venomous snake found in South Florida is the Cottonmouth or Water Moccasin. These snakes are extremely aggressive and very lethal. Most fatal encounters with this snake are found near waterways or ponds, where the victim may be in a secluded location and emergency care is just too far away.
Most snake bites occur when people attempt to capture, kill, or handle a snake, or when they accidentally step on a resting snake. Whenever you come across a snake in your backyard, garden or flower areas, or even in your home, please do not attempt to capture or kill the snake yourself! Its always best to let the experts at Wildlife Task Force handle your snake encounter of any kind.
Here are a few simple tips to avoid a snake bite:
- Never Attempt to or capture a wild snake
- Always wear closed toe shoes or boots when enjoying the outdoors
- Teach your children and family members to avoid all snakes if possible
- Learn to identify the venomous snakes in your area or in places that you maybe soon to visit.
- Always keep our number handy if you should need assistance with any type of snake! (855) FL-VENOM.
- Remember! If a venomous snake ever bites you, immediately call 911!
Here are some photographs and information on a few of the most common venomous and non-venomous snakes in South Florida:
Common Black Racer:
- These snakes can be found just about everywhere outdoors, including flower beds, gardens, thick bushes and hedges, pool decks, crawlspaces and patios.
- They mostly eat frogs, lizards and insects.
- These snakes are the most common home invaders because they love to slither in open lanai doors and screen porches. These snakes are non-venomous, but when cornered they can leave a nasty bite that could lead to severe infection if untreated.
- Baby Black Racers have a body pattern that resembles the pygmy or diamondback rattlesnakes, in order to trick predators, including humans into thinking that they are dangerous!
- Always Remember (855) FL-VENOM!
Adult Black Racer
Baby Black Racer
Red Rat Snake or Corn Snake:
These snakes are also commonly found in flowerbeds, gardens, pool areas, thick bushes and hedges and believe it or not Attic Spaces!
- These snakes are excellent climbers and are known to climb trees in search of food and also climb houses into an attic space in search of mice and rodents.
- These snakes are often found in garages and in homes, as they like to enter open garage doors and sliding glass doors.
- They are non-venomous, and even though they are one of the more docile snakes, they will still deliver a nasty bite that is prone to infection.
Yellow Rat Snakes:
These snakes are very similar to the red rat snake but the most signifying difference is their markings and color patterns on their bodies.
- These snakes are also excellent climbers and very agile when it comes to tracking their prey in high altitude scenarios, where most snakes fall short.
- These snakes are also commonly found in flowerbeds, gardens, barns, crawlspaces, trees, and bushes and in attic spaces.
- They primarily eat rodents and lizards, but have been known to steal baby chickens and birds!
They are also non-venomous and docile but can still deliver a memorable bite if provoked!
Florida Banded Water Snake:
Banded water snakes can be found in nearly all freshwater habitats, including ponds, lakes, streams, rivers, wetlands, swamps, and marshes.
- Banded water snakes are commonly seen in the vicinity of many aquatic habitats and are active both day and night.
- They primarily hunt in and around water for fish and frogs
- These snakes are commonly mistaken for the Water Moccasin, however they are non-venomous but a bite from this snake can lead to sever infections, as they carry a large presence of bacteria in their mouths.
Water Moccasin or Cottonmouth:
Cottonmouths are venomous semi-aquatic snakes often referred to as “water moccasins.”
- They can be found in nearly all freshwater habitats but are most common in golf courses and heavily vegetated wetlands.
- Cottonmouths will eat a variety of aquatic prey, including frogs, lizards, snakes (including smaller cottonmouths), small turtles, baby alligators, mammals, birds, and especially fish.
- The cottonmouth got its name because of the bright white lining inside of its mouth that is normally seen when they are threatened.
- These snakes, unlike most other snakes do not flee when threatened; they will stand their ground and become very aggressive!
Eastern Diamondback Rattlesnake:
This snake is the largest and most dangerous snake in the U.S.
- They primarily live in palmetto thickets or other thick vegetation
- Their primary food source is rabbits and rodents
- They can grow between 4-6ft long and have segmented rattles at the end of their tail.
- They do not always rattle before striking and are ambush predators
- Any encounter with this snake can be fatal, as a single dose of their venom is strong enough to kill 3 or 4 adult humans!
- If you should spot this snake near or around your house, call Wildlife Task Force immediately, as the odds of capturing the snake decreases drastically after the first hour of the initial sighting!
Eastern Coral Snake:
These snakes are extremely reclusive and tend to live underground, or in sandy, woody or marshy areas
- A Coral snakes venom is 3 times more potent than a King Cobra
- Coral snakes generally only bite when handled or startled
- They eat frogs, lizards and other smaller snakes
- The Coral snake is commonly confused with the Scarlet King Snake
- Remember the rhyme, “Red and Yellow, kill a fellow and Red and Black, a friend of Jack.” The Coral snake always has a black nose.
If you should find a snake in your home, business or out in the yard and you want it safely and humanely removed, contact Wildlife Task Force at (855) FL-VENOM or simply fill out the contact form on this page.