Why We Fear Snakes: The Science Behind People’s Dread of Snakes

A girl is screaming because of the snake

Snakes slither across the ground with unmatched agility and reflexes, and the ability to strike before a human can even begin to react. What seems like an abnormal fear or an irrational fear is anything but irrational. Consider the size an anaconda or the drop of a snake’s poison being so deadly it could kill an elephant. If a snake that’s 14-feet long goes to attack, it’s easy to see why we fear snakes. Humans have an inherent fear of the unknown, and when some snakes can potentially kill you, it seems more realistic to fear a snake. But, how do you classify this specific phobia?

Ophidiophobia.Hand writing Phobia with marker

1. What is Ophidiophobia?

Ophidiophobia is when a person has an excessive fear of snakes. The odd factor behind this fear is that you’re far from alone in your fear of snakes. Nearly 1 out of 3 people have Ophidiophobia, and it’s thought to be brought on by two main things:

  • An innate reaction
  • Life-events

If you were bitten by a snake when you were younger, it’s easy to see why you might be scared of these slithering pests even if they’re a mere 6 – 8 inches in length. When you have a true phobia, it goes well beyond the normal low fear of seeing a snake. No, it goes into an intense fear response.

Read moreWhy We Fear Snakes: The Science Behind People’s Dread of Snakes

Copperhead Snakes: Facts, Bites and Treatment

Copperhead snake with a bug on head

Copperhead snakes are some of the most common snakes in North America – but they’re certainly not a welcomed sight. They’re not as deadly as other snakes, like the coral snake, but they do have venom, and they can be aggressive. The only good news here is that the copperhead’s venom is mild and their bites are rarely ever fatal in humans.

Copperhead is a fitting name for this snake: it has a copper-colored head.

How Dangerous is the Copperhead?

The copperhead’s bite isn’t quite as potent as the cottonmouth snake or the rattlesnake, but its bite still requires medical attention. While these bites are rarely fatal, deaths can and do occur.  Copperheads aren’t extremely dangerous, but you should still avoid these snakes – or any wild snake for that matter – if you cross its path. There’s never a reason to handle a wild snake unless it’s in self-defense.

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5 Common Types of Rat Snakes (And 5 Fun Facts You Didn’t Know)

South florida yellow rat snake lying on ground

Rat snakes are as interesting as they’re beautiful. The rat snake species, despite its name, doesn’t look like a rat at all. A non-venomous snake, this species poses little harm to humans and kills by constriction.

Let’s learn about rat snake facts and what these snakes offer the world.

Introducing the Rat Snake

Black rat snake
Source: http://srelherp.uga.edu/

Rat snakes can be broken down into two different categories: Old World and New World species. When you consider the New World species, it’s important to know that we’re talking about western rat snakes. Their eastern counterparts are considered old world species.

What’s really interesting about these snakes is that they have become more complex the more we study them. Just at the beginning of the early 2000s, there was a discovery that changed the way we think of these snakes. We always considered the New and Old World species to be closely related, but now we’re finding out that the New World species have a closer relation to king snakes than they do the rat snakes of the old world.

Read more5 Common Types of Rat Snakes (And 5 Fun Facts You Didn’t Know)

Kingsnake: Facts & 5 Species You Have to Know

Common kingsnake on grass

If you ever come across a kingsnake in the wild, your first reaction may be to run the other way. Often mistaken for the venomous – and dangerous – coral snake, kingsnakes like that predators cower and run away in fear. After all, it helps these non-venomous creatures stay alive.

While it’s generally good practice to leave all wild snakes alone, it’s still helpful to be able to identify these slithering creatures if you do happen to cross their paths.

These kingsnake facts will help you determine whether you’re dealing with a harmless creature, or a deadly snake.

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Shocking Gopher Snake Facts You Never Knew

California gopher snake on ground

Gopher Snakes may have an intimidating appearance, but these non-venomous creatures are not to be feared. If anything, they’re more afraid of you than you are of them.

Still, these snakes are to be respected, and are sometimes confused with other more dangerous snakes (like rattlesnakes) when out in the wild. Let’s learn more about these fascinating creatures, and find out how to identify them.

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15 Q&As about Garter Snake Facts

San Francisco Garter Snake

Canada is filled with garter snakes, and these wild garters are also found in the eastern United States. These snakes, common and small, are known for eating small prey and they are often born alongside 20 – 40 brothers and sisters.

Let’s take a look at some garter snake facts and Q&As to learn more about these slithering snakes.

1. What Do Garter Snakes Look Like?

The common garter snake is the one most people are accustomed to seeing in their yards. These snakes have a wide range of colors, and they can be found with three well-defined longitudinal stripes on their body. You’ll find these stripes on the snake’s:

  • Lower side of the body
  • Center of the back

When you see these snakes, they will often have a yellow or greenish stripe pattern, which is the best way to identify them in the wild. But there are 13 subspecies of this snake that will look slightly different with different color stripes.

Read more15 Q&As about Garter Snake Facts

Do Snakes Hibernate? 9 Answers to a Complex Question

Snake in hibernation

Snakes will often disappear during the cold winter months? Do snakes hibernate? In a way yes, but it’s not the same type of hibernation that you’re probably thinking about. This is quite interesting because it’s almost the same idea, but it is slightly different.

1. What Is Hibernation?

Snakes in hibernation hole
Source: http://www.keywordsuggests.com/

Hibernation, when discussing animals, is a time of year, during the cold seasons, where an animal and even some plants will go into a dormant state. This state is considered a very deep sleep, and the animal will stay in their slumber until the cold season passes.

If you think about it, hibernation makes a lot of sense for some animals. Bears go into hibernation because they need to conserve their energy. The food that bears need will be scarce during the winter, so they will hide away to conserve energy and lower the metabolic process.

But snakes do this for an entirely different reason.

Read moreDo Snakes Hibernate? 9 Answers to a Complex Question

How to Treat Snake Bites: 6 Essential Steps

A copperhead snake bites

You’ve been bitten. It all happened so fast, but you’re 99% sure a snake just bit you. The bite size seems to match up to what you’ve seen on television, and you realize you’re now one of the few snake bite victims each year. That’s a scary thought.

To make matters worse, you don’t know what type of snake attacked. Snake bite treatment is essential. I’m going to discuss how to treat snake bites, and you’ll learn why medical care and a trip to the emergency room is recommended for most snake bites.

Read moreHow to Treat Snake Bites: 6 Essential Steps

Little-Known Coral Snake Facts & 4 Common Species (10 interesting facts)

Aquatic coral snake on ground

Coral snakes sound like a friendly creature you might meet in a storybook fantasy land, but these creatures are highly venomous and dangerous. Found in both North America and Asia, these snakes rarely see humans, but if you do happen to cross their path, you may want to turn and run the other way.

Let’s learn more about this venomous snake, its bite and its different species.

Read moreLittle-Known Coral Snake Facts & 4 Common Species (10 interesting facts)