Venomous snakes are common and can be found across the entire state of Mississippi. Mississippi is home to six venomous snakes. In human encounters, snake envenomation is a defensive mechanism used to deter a potential predator. Snake bites occur when a snake is startled or assesses a threat. These often occur when individuals attempt to handle or kill a snake. Snakes can strike up to several feet at speeds close to 3 meters per second! Avoid handling dead, including decapitated, snakes as they are capable of reflexively striking. Approximately 20% of snake bites can be "dry," meaning no venom was delivered.
All venomous snakebites should be evaluated at your nearest emergency department or health care facility.
Stay calm and seek medical attention.
Call 911 if any symptoms of shortness of breath, chest pain, confusion, or loss of consciousness develop.
DO immobilize the bitten extremity at the level of the heart.
DO NOT apply a tourniquet or ice.
DO NOT attempt to lance the wound and suction out the venom.
DO NOT electrocute the bitten extremity.