Richmond, VA Copperhead Snake Removal and Control – Virginia
(804) 729-0046 or toll-free at (888) 824-7383
Copperhead Snakes Removal in Virginia. Did you know that Copper head snakes are one of the most feared snakes in Virginia and throughout the United States? Service calls involving copperhead snakes is the most common snake call we receive as wildlife removal technicians. Although the least venomous of Virginia’s three venomous snakes (Rattlesnakes and Water Moccasins are the other two), these snakes are the most fear by Virginian’s and can be very dangerous!
Another fear that homeowners have is that their beloved pet dog or cat will receive a lethal snakebite from a copperhead snake. We can relate to this concern from a personal standpoint. Our Bull Mastiff, Bud, was recently bitten by a Copperhead. There was obvious swelling around Bud’s mouth and head, so off to the vet we went. Because of the swelling and the possibility of his airway being restricted, Bud was immediately given an IV (Intravenous Therapy). They also gave him pain medicine because snake bites can be extremely painful, and as a precaution against infection he was given an antibiotic. Snake anti-venom was not given and is usually not necessary for Copperhead snake bites. We often get calls from potential customers stating, “A Copperhead has bitten my dog or cat.” Many times they want to know if Copperhead bites are lethal and if they should take their pet to the vet. The short answer is YES – Take Your Pet To The Vet. While Copperhead snake bites are rarely lethal, the care and any treatment decisions involving your pet are best made by your vet.
Feel free to contact us if you have any questions on Copperheads or any other snake species indigenous to Virginia. Our Wildlife Control Technicians are experts in removing and controlling all snake species in Virginia. Some of the places we provide copperhead snake removal services are in Richmond, Henrico, Short Pump, Ashland, Glen Allen, Mechanicsville, Chesterfield, Midlothian, Chester, Bon Air, Brandermill, Woodlake, Powhatan, Charlottesville, Orange County and Amelia VA. Call us is you don’t see your Virginia county, city, town or community listed for snake removal and prevention.
COMMON NAME: Northern Copperhead Snake
SCIENTIFIC NAME: Agkistrodon contortrix mokasen
VERNACULAR NAMES: Dumb rattlesnake, red adder, red eye, red snake, white oak snake, deaf snake, beech-leaf snake, chuck head, copper adder, copper-bell, deaf adder, hazel head, popular leaf snake, thunder snake, harlequin snake.
COPPERHEAD SNAKES AVERAGE LENGTH: 26-36 inches.
VIRGINIA COPPERHEAD SNAKES RECORD LENGTH: 48 inches.
COPPERHEAD SNAKES RECORD LENGTH: 53 inches.
COPPERHEAD SNAKES PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: The length of this species is 24-36 inches and the color is coppery-red on the head with an hourglass pattern. There are dark rounded spots at the sides of belly and the scales are weakly keeled. The dorsum of the body and tail are pinkish tan to dark brown and almost black, with hourglass shaped crossbands colored chestnut to dark brown; most dorsal scales are sprinkled with black flecks; head is triangular and the labial region of chin and the venter are cream colored; the neck is narrow and the dorsum of the head is flat. Adult males are generally larger than females; Juveniles have the same color patterns as the adults, except the tip of the tail is a sulfur yellow and lack the black flecking of the adults. There is some regional differences in body color and pattern throughout Virginia. At least seven melanistic individuals have been documented. The record length is 53 inches. The longevity record for this species is 9 years, 5 months.
COPPERHEAD SNAKE IDENTIFICATION: Northern Copperheads have dark colored crossbands that are for the most part shaped like an hourglass. Usually some of the crossbands are broken and do not connect. The Copperhead snake is a pinkish to tan venomous snake with several dark brown hourglass bands on its back. The head is flat with a pit between the eye and nostril. The belly is white with black flecks and smudges. The eyes have vertical pupils. The scales are keeled. The young copperheads are similar to adults but have a bright yellow tail tip.
COPPERHEAD SNAKE REPRODUCTION: This species mates in April or May. Fall mating has also been recorded in September. 1-17 young are born from mid-August to early October, occasionally as early as July. The young are 8-9 3/4 inches at birth. The young have a yellow tail tip, and a narrow dark line through the eye that divides the dark head from the pale lips. Sexual activity is rarely observed, and they are probably nocturnal and under cover. Mating often occurs when individuals congregate along hibernation ledges in the spring and fall. Hibernation is from November to April, in crevices in rock outcroppings, with a preference for a southern exposure. They will often hibernate in the company of other snakes. Most of the birthing occurs from late August to early October; litter sizes range from 3-15 in Virginia.
COPPERHEAD SNAKES BEHAVIOR: This species is normally sluggish, and they rely on camouflage to escape detection. They are gregarious and largely nocturnal. They may vibrate the tail rapidly when alarmed. The summer cover is under logs, rocks, piles of rubbish, in stone walls and cracks in foundations. The home range for males average 27.4 acres, and for females 8.5 acres. In autumn, after birth of the young, at least 5 individuals may be found per acre of favorable habitat. Studies have shown that six or seven adult copperheads per acre can be found when conditions are optimal. They may wander into brush, grassland or weedy fields. The alert pose is a coiled body, with the head at a 45 degree angle; vibrates tail when disturbed; generally remains alert and motionless to hide itself; usually docile when caught but will strike if aggravated; give off a pungent odor when very warm; males sometimes engage in combat before the mating period; during mating one observation found them to coil around each other and look at each other and occasionally unwrap one coil length and then recoil with the heads always about 4in. apart.
COPPERHEAD SNAKES HABITAT: The copperhead snake is found statewide in forest, old fields, marshes, rock outcrops, and agricultural buildings.
COPPERHEAD SNAKES HABITS: The copperhead snake feeds during the day and night on mice, birds, amphibians and lizards. They prefer sunlit areas with abundant sources of prey. The female copperhead gives birth to 3 -15 live young.
NOTES: The venom of the copperhead snake is the least toxic of the three venomous snakes found in Virginia. Any snake with blotches (e.g., Cornsnake, Milksnake, juvenile Ratsnake, or Mole Kingsnake) is often incorrectly identified as a copperhead snake and killed.
Rear our articles on deterring snakes and How To Get Rid Of Snakes. For the removal of snakes and other wildlife in Virginia call us at (804) 729-0046 or toll-free at (888) 824-7383. For additional Wildlife Removal Information in Virginia.