Beware of snakes before you venture into an Arizona adventure this summer

It's springtime and it's always a good idea to be safe around wildlife this time of year.
Published: Mar. 27, 2023 at 11:01 AM MST
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PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) -- The weather is warming up and while it’s time to return to the great outdoors for us to enjoy some fun, snakes are also coming out to soak up the rays.

Our newest member of Arizona’s Family, Aliana Kwan, went out to the Phoenix Herpetological Sanctuary. There are 13 different kinds of rattlesnakes and there is a total of six in the immediate Phoenix metro area. “The best thing you can do is just don’t mess with them,” Cale Morris, venom manager at the sanctuary, said. “Give them their distance.” There’s a hotline number in case you need snake removal in a safe way: 602-550-1090. A removal costs $100, a fee significantly less than a hospital visit for a venomous bite.

If you or your dog or child gets bit, the only thing that will help you is to get antivenom. Rattlesnake bites cause swelling, so take off any rings, jewelry, etc. before heading to the hospital. The sanctuary has an antivenom bank full of more than 200 venomous snakes spreading across more than 70 species across the world.

The rattlesnake removal program suggests the following for safe and effective snake removals:

  • Do not run. If you are not calm, you are more likely to trip and fall and cause damage to yourself.
  • Do not approach the snake for any reason. Do not try to hurt, kill, move, or photograph the snake. Back up and give it plenty of space so that everyone feels safer.
  • Call a professional to remove the snake & relocate it to a safe, appropriate habitat.
  • Even nonvenomous snakes can bite. We always say anything with a mouth can bite. Treat all snakes (and all animals for that matter) with respect and distance and you are going to be okay.
  • Prevention is a priority! Learn how to keep yourself and your family safe and you will be prepared for any situation, including rattlesnakes in your yard.