Tampa, FL

Safety Tips as Tampa Bay Enters "Snakebite Season"

Malinda Fusco

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Although Florida is typically "warm" year-round, as Spring heads towards Summer, the state is heating up even further. With that comes what is known as "snakebite season." Starting in April and going well into October, snakes are more active in the sunshine state, and thus more of a cause for concern if you're not careful.

This article looks at what snakebite season is and how we can be safe and enjoy the heat!

What is "snakebite season" exactly?

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Photo of Eastern Coral Snake from Wikicommons

Snakebite season is, again, typically April to October in Florida. During this time, there's a bit of an increase in snake bites due to more active serpents, which is caused by warmer weather.

Also, more people are out and about, enjoying nature, which can also cause this increase. Since Florida is home to some of the most dangerous snakes in the world, like the Eastern Coral Snake, it's important to keep some safety tips at the forefront of the mind!

5 Key Safety Tips

Here are five safety tips to follow throughout the season and year.

1. Steer clear of tall grass that you can't see well into. Snakes can hide within it, and if you stumble across one accidentally, you're more likely to get bit.

2. Snakes are more active early morning or dusk, so keep an eye out at these times especially.

3. Wear closed-toe shoes when in the grass or mowing your lawn.

4. Do not try to catch snakes.

5. If you see a snake, leave it alone.

What should you do if you are bitten by a snake?

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Photo by Arron Choi on Unsplash

First of all, if you are bitten by a snake the most important thing to do is to call 9-1-1 immediately. A lot of people start to panic or self-treat the wound. Do not do this. Also, it is extremely important to keep in mind that contrary to popular belief, two bites are worse than one. Do not try to catch the snake, as that can result in a second bite. Try to identify the snake or take note of any special coloring, markings, etc.

Do not put ice on the wound unless instructed by the emergency operator, also do not try to suck the venom out of the wound. Above all, listen to the operator on the phone and wait for emergency personnel to help you.

So, be careful during snakebite season and keep these safety tips in mind. Enjoy the warm weather!

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