Venomous Water Moccasin or Harmless Watersnake?

I’m learning more about these snakes as I witnessed a large one off the pier at Stanley Draper Lake.


There are many harmless watersnakes (genus Nerodia) that are frequently confused with venomous Water Moccasins a.k.a. Cottonmouths (Agkistrodon piscivorus). Sadly, harmless snakes are often killed out of fear for the safety of family and pets. Most people, even those who aren’t afraid of snakes, would feel safer if they knew how to rapidly identify snakes near water as harmless or venomous. So how can you tell them apart?

Source: Venomous Water Moccasin or Harmless Watersnake?

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