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Warmer weather drawing out Spring creatures, potentially snakes

Posted at 7:42 PM, Feb 29, 2024
and last updated 2024-02-29 20:42:08-05

WACO, Texas — It may be chilly now but warmer weather is coming this weekend — we already saw weather in the 80s and 90s across Central Texas this week, and it's stirring up winter-dormant creatures earlier than expected.

“Calls have been very high this week now that spring is happening," Jeff Wooten said.

He started Cen-Tex Pest Control nearly 11 years ago.

"Mayflies have been really high this year — I think higher than I’ve ever seen in the past 11 years," Wooten said.

However, there’s something more menacing that might be hiding in your bushes.

“Snakes start to move and start to become more prevalent because temperatures are warming up," Adam Henry said.

Henry is the Assistant District Supervisor for the Ft. Worth District of USDA Texas Wildlife Services Program.

“This is the time of year where we start to see rats and mice — a food source of our serpents and snakes and reptiles."

About 7,000 people are bit each year by venomous snakes in the United States, according to Texas Health and Human Services.

One average, one to two Texans die each year from snakebites.

Roughly half of all venomous snake bites are dry bites, meaning the snake’s bite is non-venomous.

Henry says when this happens, snakes don’t see you as food — they just want you to stay away.

Sometimes those bites happen during picture perfect moments that Texans look forward to every year.

“The blue bonnets will be coming up soon, usually around Easter time," said Cindy Kovar, Program Manager with Texas A&M Agrilife Extension Silver Driver Safe Texans.

"Blue bonnets, paintbrushes, are very popular to take pictures in of our families, our grandchildren, our friends."

She says those bites can often happen near roadways.

“We have to be wary of the fact that there’s often snakes — copperheads, rattlesnakes in those areas, because they like to hover near the roadways because of the heat."

Adam says most snake bites happen when you’re gardening, which many of you may be doing this weekend, during those higher spring temperatures.

He says to be careful and cautious if you decide to remove a snake while using longer gardening tools, or you can also call your local animal control or a pest control company.