Copperhead Snake Information and Photos?

June 2, 2005

Copperhead SnakeWe've been building a cabin in WV and I'm planning on going out in July to start painting the inside.

What I'm concerned about are snakes, Copperheads to be exact. We were out to the cabin a few weeks ago to do some work and my Hubby was weed whacking. When he got up near the road he smelled cucumbers. They tell us that's what you smell when there's one around. He didn't stay there long.


I"m a little afraid, because when I go in July I'm going by myself and planning on staying 3 months.

Does anyone have any kind of advice about what you do when you see a snake and is there anything that you can do to make em leave.



By Debbie (Guest Post)
June 3, 20051 found this helpful

Snakes are out mostly at dawn and dusk and they are shy, if that makes you feel better. I would do weeding at some other time, because I bet snakes are hard to see in the weeds.

If you do see a snake, freeze, and then slowly back away. They don't want to bite you unless they feel threatened. No offense, but you are not yummy. They are very happy to see you go away.

If you do get bitten, just go to the nearest hospital. Do not cut exes over the wound or suck the blood out or anything like that. If the nearest hospital is pretty far, call and see what your doctor recommends. The doctor may know the location of the nearest place with antivenom.


Keep a map to that place in your glove box.

Ideally, whatever part of the body is bitten should be raised in the air above the heart and the victim should be kept calm and quiet. You want to keep the poison from being pumped through the bloodsteam too quickly. Of course, if you get bitten on the ankle, it's hard to hop around calmly with one leg in the sky! After moving away from the snake, lie down with something or someone to hold your foot in the air while people are deciding what to do, and try to figure out a way to elevate your leg while someone is driving you to the hospital.

By Beverly in TN (Guest Post)
June 3, 20052 found this helpful

I don't know this to be fact, but I have heard that snakes don't like moth balls. So it wouldn't hurt to try scattering moth balls around outside.

June 3, 20052 found this helpful

I live in a mountainess area where their are copperheads and Rattlesnakes. I agree with the other post.I always make sure I have High-top shoes on when outside working and I wear leather gloves to do yard work .Always be careful where you step or stoop .Snakes like to crawl under things like black plastic insulation, stacks of wood,etc.


The only protect you have is knowing snakes are there.So always watch and keep paths well lighted.

By (Guest Post)
June 5, 20050 found this helpful

I heard they don't like the smell of cedar.


Bronze Post Medal for All Time! 148 Posts
June 7, 20051 found this helpful

Read up on snakes in your area, and learn to identify them. Most snakes would rather retreat than stay and strike at you. Just always be aware of the possibility of encountering a snake. Carry a walking stick when you are out walking, and bounce it on the ground as you walk. The vibration alerts the snakes and they will vacate the area ahead of you. I always do this when picking wild blackberries in the woods. As for repelling snakes, we use mothballs, and they do work Just make sure that you scatter fresh ones from time to time...especially after the rain.


Cedar apparently does not work. We use Cedar Chips as a bedding for our outdoor dog pen, and have a snake problem in the pen unless we scatter mothballs around the fenceline. Some years are worse than others for snakes. Keep down weeds and litter. And be careful when entering tool sheds, etc. They like cool concrete floors in the heat of the summer.

By Sandy (Guest Post)
June 11, 20051 found this helpful

One thing about the mothballs...if you have children be careful with them. My Mom scattered moth balls in the garden to keep squirrels away and one of the grandaughters ate one of them. (She always has been a little different.) She had to have her stomach pumped. YUCK

By matt (Guest Post)
July 25, 20051 found this helpful

Correction to the post on what to do if bitten, DO NOT PLACE THE BITTEN LIMB ABOVE THE HEART! That only makes the posion spread faster.


Place the limb below the heart to slow the blood flow from that limb.

By ur mom (Guest Post)
January 19, 20060 found this helpful

I haven't even read anything yet. What is this about""

By I have no name (Guest Post)
July 4, 20071 found this helpful

Copperheads don't smell like cucumbers.. It's a myth. I just read it here a few minutes ago. Scroll down to the myths section. This also gives good information on Copperheads and how to distinguish it from non-poisonous snakes that look similar to it. Hope this helps!

By Laura (Guest Post)
July 9, 20072 found this helpful

Copperheads and cottonmouths do smell. I grew up in Texas around a lot of snakes and could always smell the snakes before I saw them. This is a skill that also came in handy when traveling in Costa Rica and Thailand.


They do smell musky. Cotton mouths sometimes tend to smell like a sick dog to me. It is a sweet, putrid, musky odor.

By Linda Ullah (Guest Post)
October 5, 20071 found this helpful

Is it true that moth balls will really keep copperheads away, or is this a myth?

By \cody porter (Guest Post)
June 9, 20080 found this helpful

Copperheads do smell like cucumbers. I live West Virginia. I've had to handle them before. :(

By Meli (Guest Post)
August 1, 20080 found this helpful

I had a copperhead problem for years in my backyard until someone told me about sprinkling sulphur around the fence line. If a snake tries to cross it, it burns up their belly. I tried it and it worked- no snakes for an entire spring/summer. I was concerned about what sulphur would do to my kids playing in the yard, so I tried another recomendation-crushed moth balls. So far no snakes. I've heard that Tide POWDERED detergent also works because of some ingredient found only in Tide. I haven't tried that since the moth balls are working.

By Imanol (Guest Post)
August 30, 20081 found this helpful

These snakes are usually secluded and don't like to come into contact with humans. You should be fine because when you are walking in the woods, where there are copper heads you come within striking range of about 5 copperheads and never know. They freeze when they sense danger and are not aggressive unless they they are stepped on or handled.

June 15, 20130 found this helpful

I live in Texas and I do agree that some of the remedies that were mentioned do work... but poisonous snakes are not shy (like copperheads, cottonmouths, and rattlesnakes). They will not run away. I have personally been chased by copperheads and cottonmouths they do not care about you they want to defend themselves, if you are in their territory they are most happiest when they bite you, because they know that they possibly have just killed you.

Rattlesnakes have a longer degree of striking distance (ex. Their striking distance is equal to their length) In conclusion they beat way to keep snakes away is buying or already owning a .22 or a shotgun... you're welcome!

April 21, 20171 found this helpful

This is not a myth. It is a rank odor and I guess rotten cucumber is the closest thing I can think of. Copperheads will bite you just for walking by.

June 26, 20170 found this helpful

When touched, the copperhead quickly strikes or remains quiet and tries to crawl away. Sometimes when touched, they emit a musk that smells like cucumbers. Young copperheads eat mostly insects, especially caterpillars, and use their yellow tipped tails to function as a worm-like lure to attract prey.

September 12, 20170 found this helpful

I'm in louisiana and I have cotton mouths & water moccasins & YES moth balls work to keep snakes away. My front porch, back patio & garage all have moth balls scattered around

January 22, 20181 found this helpful

I would trust moth balls or citronella before any wood

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2 More Questions

Here are the questions asked by community members. Read on to see the answers provided by the ThriftyFun community.

September 18, 2009

Does a Copperhead snake put off an odor that smells like cucumber?

By john young from Pomeroy, OH


September 18, 20090 found this helpful

Yes, I just read about this yesterday, didn't save the site though, sorry


Silver Post Medal for All Time! 398 Posts
September 19, 20090 found this helpful

According to the article I am sending regarding this topic, this is a myth.


Silver Post Medal for All Time! 398 Posts
September 20, 20090 found this helpful

However they do excrete a smell when about to bite or really agitated. So I guess the answer to this is yes, if they are ready to attack and mad, and no, they do not smell like this otherwise. Robyn


Bronze Feedback Medal for All Time! 108 Feedbacks
September 25, 20090 found this helpful

I remember living on a farm in So.Illinois and my mom would go to the garden to weed and saying she smelled a coperhead snake and it smelled to her like cucumbers and sure enough she would see one and she was a good shot with a hoe and killed it. I don't know how she got by with it all those years and didn't get bit. She was a very daring woman in my book. Lots of times a King snake would swallow the poison snakes. Mom never killed the King snakes. She did know her snakes and I guess in her way was cautious but I hated the sight of them and ran to the house. I still hate the snakes and when they are on TV I go to another channel and won't look at them. HAHA I live in Tennessee on the outskirts of Chattanooga and have not seen one since the 5 years we have been here but do know they are slithering around just waiting for me some day.

September 26, 20090 found this helpful

Never got close enough to one to smell

September 29, 20090 found this helpful

My husband Al and I grew up in a small town in Kentucky. When we were dating in 1987 we went for a walk past his parents place and sat on a rock. After sitting there for about 10 minutes we smelled rotten cucumbers and we ran. My now husband took a log and flipped over the rock and there was a whole nest of copperheads. So my advice to the pastor is if you smell that smell get out of Dodge. The old people have this advice for a reason. If you think it's a myth, well test it and let the rest of us know. LOL!


Diamond Feedback Medal for All Time! 1,317 Feedbacks
October 20, 20090 found this helpful

I am with Triple Deb, I too would never wanna know!

July 2, 20150 found this helpful

When copperheads become excited or stressed they exude a musk which does, indeed, smell like cucumbers. Also, their feces looks like yellow cornmeal.

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June 19, 2018

I've been told as a young child that a copperhead and a diamondback are the same snake, is this true?


Gold Post Medal for All Time! 677 Posts
June 19, 20180 found this helpful

They are not the same. The main difference is the rattlesnake (diamondback) holds its tail up when moving. The copperhead does not.


Bronze Feedback Medal for All Time! 196 Feedbacks
June 19, 20180 found this helpful

Wow! This question took me back to 6th grade botany!! FLASHBACK TUESDAY :)

I wish we had the web back then to answer our questions. They made us go to the library and use encyclopedias. OH MY!!

Here are some neat-o sites on each. They are their own entity (species) I wish I had paid better attention in class :)

Snakes terrify I found learning about them helped me a little...still don't want to find one in my yard...but knowledge is power!

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