Venomous Snake Removal in Houston, TX
Relatively few snakes are venomous. Of over 2,500 species of snakes in the world, only about 375 are venomous.
Of about 116 species of snakes native to the U.S., only 19 are dangerous. Bites of a few species of the rear-fanged snakes sometimes cause harm, but the effects vary. Basic snake biology, behavior, and control strategies (for those native to the U.S.) are covered in the Fact Sheet on Non-Venomous Snakes. Despite movies and folktales, a venomous snakebite will not always kill, or permanently disable you.
Based on reports from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), over the past several decades, honeybee stings have killed about twice as many people as have died from snake bites in the U.S. each year.
How to Tell if a Snake is Venomous
As with other animals, the shapes, numbers, and locations of physical structures are important keys used to correctly identify (ID) a species or higher taxonomic group. All venomous snakes have at least one pair of specialized teeth used to introduce their venom into their prey. These "fangs" are usually distinctly larger or longer than most of that snake's other teeth. The presence and location of "fangs" is very important to ID a snake as venomous. Other characters may also be important for a geographic area. For example, in the U.S., all pit vipers have only a single row of scales on the underside of their tails; vertically elliptical pupils; and a pair of pits between their nostrils and eyes. Although these characters are common to all pit vipers, there are some very venomous snakes that DO NOT have them. For example, coral and sea snakes have round pupils. Other characteristics like color patterns or behaviors are often used to ID species or subspecies, and may be important for alerting potential prey, warning away predators, or communicating between members of the same snake species (especially in courtship and mating).