All About the Arizona Desert Snake
Arizona has a large variety of snakes, most of these are of the desert snake variety and the most common of these snakes are the rattlesnake. The rattlesnake is very poisonous, and should never be approached unless you are well trained in handling this species of snake.
When most people think of a rattlesnake they picture the desert snake known as the Western Diamondback Rattlesnake, but in reality there are several different varieties of rattlesnakes and not all of them look like the Diamondback. Due to the fact that there are so many varieties of this species of desert snake, you may not even realize that you have come across a rattlesnake, unless you hear the rattling sound. If you do see a snake that you cannot identify, it may be possible to find out which type of snake it was by looking for pictures in books about reptiles.
Another desert snake that can be found in Arizona is the Coral snake. This desert snake will only grow to a length of 12 to 20 inches, but they are very poisonous. Generally, this snake will not be deadly to an adult, but it is not uncommon for children to have deadly encounters with the Coral snake. If a snake that could be a Coral snake bites either an adult or a child, it is imperative that they be taken to the hospital right away. This snake is very colorful, with stripes of red, black and yellow; although there are other snakes that resemble the Coral snake, but with the Coral the yellow stripe will be next to the red stripe. To be safe, you should always keep your distance from any snake.
One desert snake that closely resembles the Coral snake is the Arizona King snake. There are several varieties of this snake, and the red, black and yellow variety is the one that looks like the Coral snake, but the most common of this desert snake is the black and white variety. These snakes are not poisonous, but because they do tend to resemble some snakes that are venomous it is a good idea to always use caution if you come across one.
Although the King snake is not poisonous, they will kill prey in the same way that a Boa, by constricting their prey. They will usually eat lizards, birds, as well as other snakes, and are not harmful to humans.
One desert snake that is considered to be one of the largest of the snakes found in the Southwestern United States is the Gopher snake. This species of snake can grow to a length of 8 feet; they will hunt during the day if it is cool enough, and at night during the warmer months. This snake is not considered to be dangerous to humans, and is in fact considered to be helpful in controlling the rodent population.
Most other types of snakes that are considered to be the desert snake variety are harmless, but there are quite a number of them. You will find that there are many different types of desert snakes in Arizona, even those that can be found swimming in rivers and ponds.
Keep in mind that any type of snakebite can be dangerous, even if the snake that bit you is not venomous. The area where you are bitten by the snake can develop infection quickly so you should see a doctor for any type of snakebite.
To avoid the desert snake you will want to ensure that if you have a pet that you keep it on a leach at all times, keep your yard clean, as well as clear of long grass and weeds, and it is very important to keep your yard and home free of rodents as they will attract snakes.