You decided to spend the first day of spring hiking into the woods. As you walk along the trail, you've caught the scent of the fresh morning dew and the grass. As you approach a dead tree stump, you find a strange skin that resembles a snake. Keep calm, and don't panic. The first thing that you need to do is to ensure that there are no snakes nearby.
Is there a Snake Close by If I Found a Shed Snake Skin?
If the shed snakeskin is still fresh, there is a possibility that the snake is just around the corner. However, if it is shriveled up and dry, then the snake may have left the area. Snakes are vulnerable and sensitive when they are shedding their skin. Therefore, they will usually move away from their hunting area. They will look for a safe place away from their predator and prey. Still, you need to be careful, never actively hunt the snake. If you see the snake, never attempt to capture it. Snake bites will typically occur when someone tries to seize them.
Why Do Snakes Shed Skin?
Snakes shed their skin, just like other animals. Even humans will go through this process, but it will usually go unnoticed. The shedding of skin that occurs on reptiles is relatively different since it happens periodically. The snake's molting process will be more unique since their skin will typically come off in a single piece. Scientists will refer to this process as ecdysis. Snakes will shed their skin to allow more room for growth. They will also do this to remove the bacteria and parasites from their old skin. When the snake grows, its skin becomes stretched. However, unlike other creatures, their skin will not grow. Eventually, they will reach a point when they need to shed their skin to develop further.
How Often Do Snakes Shed Their Skin?
The snakes will shed their skin pretty often. Average types of snakes will shed 2-4 times annually. It can depend upon their species, age, health, and other factors. The young snakes that are still in the developmental stage will shed their skin more frequently, probably with only two weeks interval. The older snake may only go through the molting process twice each year.
Can I Identify the Snake Through the Shed Skin?
You can gain a lot of information by looking at the shed snakeskin. However, to accurately identify the snake species, you will need to have knowledge and experience and not just read a random guide on the internet. The photos may help you only narrow down your choices, but you need to closely look at the description and the scales' pattern to identify your visitor. Even the minuscule details should never be ignored.
Knowing what type of snake you are dealing with can help you identify the right action that you must take. Be sure that you will take all the necessary precautions when you are in a pile of junk or walking on tall grass. If you saw a shed snakeskin, take this opportunity to clear the clutters in your yard. Go back to the home page: Snakes of Greenville