Many outdoor enthusiasts have encountered snakes around ponds, lakes, creeks, rivers, or other wet areas. Without a field guide, how would you know what kind it was? There are many kinds of water snakes including Red Bellied (pictured above), Eastern Green, Banded, Brown and Southern to name a few. A casual glance at their markings alone may not correctly distinguish them from a water moccasin. Rest assured, a brochure provided by the GA DNR contains excellent advice, photos and information on water moccasins and water snakes. Here are some highlights on identifying these reptiles of the aquatic persuasion: For information on venomous vs. non-venomous snakes,
Water moccasins, or "Cottonmouths," are relatively short and wide. Water snakes are longer and more slender.
Water moccasins move slowly and defend their territory while water snakes move quickly away from disturbances.
When swimming, cottonmouths keep only their head above water while water snakes keep most of their body above water.
Cottonmouths always cock their heads at a 45 degree angle on land. Water snakes keep their heads level with the ground.
Both snakes feed on fish, frogs and other prey found around aquatic habitats.
go to Trail Talk" and click "know your snakes."