Though its true that the corn snake and the copperhead do look somewhat alike at a distance, there are important differences between the two snakes. For one, the copperhead is venomous, and though its venom isnt as potent as some other vipers, a bite still requires medical attention. The corn snake is harmless and nonvenomous and is even kept as a pet by some people. Here are some other fascinating differences between these two beautiful snakes. Lets compare the Corn Snake vs Copperhead!
The colors and patterns on a corn snakes body depend on its age and where it lives. Since corn snakes are also bred for the pet trade, they come in many different colors, patterns, and compound morphs.
It is found from Massachusetts down to Mexico and in Midwestern states such as Illinois, Iowa, Nebraska , and Kansas . It is very much a snake of the southern United States and is not naturally found west of the Mississippi River. Copperhead babies are fully independent from birth and are ready to breed when theyre about three and a half years old.
How do you tell the difference between a corn snake and a copperhead?
A corn snake will remain slender throughout its body, while the copperhead will be thicker in the middle of their bodies. The copperhead is shorter in length compared to the corn snake. Young copperheads have a yellow tail that they use to lure their prey.
How can you tell if its a corn snake?
The corn snake can be distinguished from other rat snakes and from kingsnakes by the stripe extending from the back of its eye past the corner of its jaw, plus the large, bold black and white checkerboard pattern on its belly.
Do corn snakes and copperheads look alike?
Corn Snake. These snakes come in various hues, including the rust-colored orange and reddish-brown, most often confused with a Copperhead if you see it from a distance. … The Corn snake’s color is the only thing that makes them look so much like Copperheads. They have thinner bodies with angular heads.
How do you tell if a snake is a copperhead?
Copperheads have muscular, thick bodies and keeled (ridged) scales. Their heads are “somewhat triangular/arrow-shaped and distinct from the neck,” with a “somewhat distinct ridge separating [the] top of head from side snout between eye and nostril,” said Beane.
One of these snakes is suitable for raising in capitivity and the other is not. Lets discover the truth. But first, the basics of these two beautiful snakes.
Corn snakes have vibrant colors ranging from orange, red , gray, and brown. Copperheads are venomous and always ready to attack when they feel threatened, unlike the corn snakes, which are easily intimidated and turn away.
Image Credit: Left: Corn Snake, Right: Copperhead | Image Credit: Pixabay Average height (adult): 4-6 feet Average weight (adult): 700-900 grams Lifespan: 15-20 years Other pet-friendly: Yes Ensure that you raise your corn snakes as a male and female for easier breeding. Corn snakes lay large clutches of eggs in warm, moist places in the spring.
Warm or defrost appropriate sizes of mice to room temperature to feed your corn snake. Additionally, you should always attend to your corn snake when feeding it with live rodents to avoid them being injured by the mice. Always include hiding places in the habitat to make your corn snake feel secure.
The eyes of your corn snake will turn to milky grey or blue when it prepares to shed off its skin. Irregular or unusual flaking Vomiting Sluggish or unenthusiastic feeding Spots or bumps on the skin Strenuous breathing Trouble when flaking the skin Strange feces White, unpleasant matter in the mouth In addition, the copperhead snake cannot settle down effortlessly and vibrates its tail every time you go near it.
Copperhead snakes have painful bites, but they are not usually lethal to adult humans as their venom is not produced in large quantities. Copperheads in the wild enjoy basking during the day and hiding at night and can also be found swimming and hunting. However, the snakes are more active at night, and they usually attack their prey by camouflaging to blend with their environment.
The copperhead snake is predatory and feeds on lizards, mice, birds, and frogs. The female copperhead gives birth to many offspring through a thin membrane from which they break free after a short while. Provide a large water dish in the snakes habitat for drinking and soaking.
Ensure that you change this dish daily and clean it thoroughly weekly to prevent bacteria from growing in it. Your copperhead snake is susceptible to several health issues that occur when hygiene is not maintained correctly. Organisms such as ticks, worms, lice, coccidian, and protozoa can cause parasitic infections to your copperhead snake.
An unhealthy copperhead snake will have weight loss issues, you will find it stargazing, it will have problems when shedding skin, and it will breathe with its mouth. Provide numerous hiding places for your copperhead and designate a basking spot when setting up the cage. Healthy appetite Lively and attentive eyes Soft and natural breathing Smooth and glittery scales
They require a lot of monitoring; therefore, the best people to own them are experienced snake pet owners. On the other hand, copperhead snakes are always ready to attack since they cannot differentiate between a friend and a foe. Small children are likely to open the lids of snake tanks if they are not old enough to understand the rules.
Oliver (Ollie) Jones A zoologist and freelance writer living in South Australia with his partner Alex, their dog Pepper, and their cat Steve (who declined to be pictured).
“The timber rattlesnake is easy, it has a rattle, pretty simple one,” explained Zoo Knoxville’s Director of Animal Care Phil Colclough said of identification.
Seeing these serpentine neighbors in your yard or on a hike is nothing new, but how can you tell if a snake venomous or not? “Copperheads are a little more difficult, a copperhead pattern looks like Hershey kisses on its back, narrow at midline, fat on the sides; a series of Hershey kiss, big, broad coppery head, the youngsters have a bright yellow tail,” Colclough explained.
Another common case of mistaken identity comes from telling the difference between a venomous coral snake and a non-venomous scarlet kingsnake. For a full list of the snakes found in East Tennessee, go to TWRA’s website . In the springtime, they slithered out from a long winter’s nap to soak up the sun, and now those venomous snakes are reproducing
Answer: The eyes of poisonous snakes have a slit pupil, like a cat’s eye. The eyes of harmless snake have round pupils. Poisonous snakes also have a more angular head and a pit in front of the eyes. See our online publication, “Snakes” for illustrations. Now you can also enjoy many YouTube videos about various native snakes and turtles on our website. Snakes are very beneficial to humans, eating rodents and other vermin. The only poisonous snakes in Maryland are copperheads and timber rattlesnakes. Copperheads are shy and their coloring and pattern is very similar to corn snakes, but the copperhead has a dark-colored hourglass shape sideways on its back.
Comparing Corn Snake vs Copperhead
Here’s a table that shows some differences between a Corn Snake and a copperhead.
Size and Weight
There’s a wider range in the size of a corn snake as opposed to a copperhead. A corn snake can grow to between 2 and 6 feet long, while a copperhead grows to about 2.5 to about 4.5 feet in length. The corn snake also weighs much more than the copperhead, even though the copperhead’s body is more robust. A corn snake can weigh 2 pounds while the copperhead male weighs 7 ounces and the female about 4 ounces.
Corn snakes and copperheads can resemble each other so much in coloration that corn snakes are sometimes mistaken for copperheads and needlessly killed. (Copperheads should also not be needlessly killed, by the way). On top, the snakes can have a brown or coppery body with brown or reddish-brown patches, though the patches on the copperhead are somewhat hourglass-shaped, and the patches on the corn snake tend to have black margins. Its ventral side resembles a black and white checkerboard.Corn snakes are also much more variable in coloration than copperheads. The colors and patterns on a corn snake’s body depend on its age and where it lives. Since corn snakes are also bred for the pet trade, they come in many different colors, patterns, and compound morphs.
The ancestors of corn snakes were venomous, but the modern snake has lost its venom and now kills its prey by wrapping its coils around it and squeezing it to death. This is called constriction. A copperhead lies in wait for prey such as a mouse to wander by, strikes out, bites it, and waits for it to be overcome by the venom before eating it. Both snakes swallow their prey whole since they can’t chew and can unhinge their jaws to do so. Sometimes an overeager corn snake will swallow prey while it’s still alive.The venom of a copperhead is mild compared to other pit vipers such as certain rattlesnakes. The venom is a hemotoxin that attacks the blood, but it is rarely fatal to humans.
The copperhead has a greater natural range than the corn snake. It is found from Massachusetts down to Mexico and in Midwestern states such as Illinois, Iowa, Nebraska, and Kansas.The corn snake’s range is from New Jersey to southernmost Florida. It is very much a snake of the southern United States and is not naturally found west of the Mississippi River.
Another big difference between corn snakes and copperheads is that corn snakes lay eggs and copperheads are viviparous. This means that the female gestates the eggs for between 83 and 150 days. They hatch while they are still inside of her and one to 21 but usually about 6 babies emerge. Their size depends on the size of their mother, but they’re about 8 inches long. Copperhead babies are fully independent from birth and are ready to breed when they’re about three and a half years old.Copperheads sometimes practice facultative parthenogenesis. This means that they can reproduce without fertilization as well as sexually. Copperheads are one of the few vertebrate species that can do this, and it sometimes happens with a female snake who’s been kept away from males for a time.Corn snakes lay 10 to 30 eggs in places where the heat and humidity are at just the right levels to incubate them properly. Adult snakes do not care for the eggs. At the right temperature, the eggs hatch after about two months. The baby snakes lack the bright colors of their parents and are about 5 inches long. They are ready to breed when they’re between a year and a half and three years old.Copperheads also have an elaborate courtship ritual that involves males defeating rival males then engaging in combat with the available female. Biologists don’t know how the more secretive corn snakes court.Next Up: Meet the 10 Animals That Hoard
Corn snakes reproduce during low temperatures. In the wild, this can be during the winter. You can lower the temperatures and provide darkness in their cages when you want them to breed.Temperatures and photoperiod trigger reproduction in corn snakes. Ensure that you raise your corn snakes as a male and female for easier breeding. Check out for hemipenes and pop them, especially for the hatchlings.Corn snakes lay large clutches of eggs in warm, moist places in the spring. They lay their eggs 30 to 45 days after mating. The clutch of eggs ranges between 10 and 30 eggs.
Warm or defrost appropriate sizes of mice to room temperature to feed your corn snake. Do not warm the mice using a microwave or prepare them around the kitchen area. Additionally, you should always attend to your corn snake when feeding it with live rodents to avoid them being injured by the mice.Have a consistent schedule for feeding your corn snake at least once a week or twice a week and the hatchlings once a week. Use suitable gallons of suitable sizes and shapes to house your corn snake so that it does not feel encaged and will also have space for exercising. Provide at least 8 to 12 hours of light in the cage daily and dim the lights at night.
The snake’s tank should always be kept clean and added with fresh substrates. Always include hiding places in the habitat to make your corn snake feel secure. You can use a sizeable box, barks, or rocks to act as hiding places.The eyes of your corn snake will turn to milky grey or blue when it prepares to shed off its skin. The color of its body will not be shiny and will turn to a whitish shade. You are advised to avoid handling it during this time as it may become irritable.A healthy corn snake has the following signs:You will notice the following signs when your corn snake is unhealthy.You can always refer to a veterinarian when you notice any of these unusual signs. Your snake is susceptible to fungal and bacterial infections that should not be left untreated. Some diseases can make the snake lose its teeth, which makes it not feed properly.
Copperhead snakes are challenging to handle as domesticated snakes. They are not easily tamed since they do not distinguish between friends and enemies. In addition, the copperhead snake cannot settle down effortlessly and vibrates its tail every time you go near it.Copperhead snakes have painful bites, but they are not usually lethal to adult humans as their venom is not produced in large quantities. The indent on its head allows it to detect its warm-blooded target. If you are looking to keep it as a pet, you must be experienced with handling snakes.Copperheads in the wild enjoy basking during the day and hiding at night and can also be found swimming and hunting. However, the snakes are more active at night, and they usually attack their prey by camouflaging to blend with their environment.The copperhead snakes can flourish in a diverse range of habitats. They require only one meal every two weeks, and you can keep the snake in moderately low-temperature habitats.
The copperhead snake is predatory and feeds on lizards, mice, birds, and frogs. You can feed it with thawed mice while in captivity. However, it would be best to use long forceps to introduce the mice to their habitat to avoid getting bitten.
Copperheads are ovoviviparous, and they give birth to live hatchlings. The eggs incubate inside the female’s body when they mate in the spring. They are born in late summer or the fall and can range from two to 18 hatchlings.Copperhead snakes breed in the spring. The males go out searching for the females and are aggressive with each other during this time. They hibernate in the winter and are friendly to other species like rattlesnakes and rat snakes.The female copperhead gives birth to many offspring through a thin membrane from which they break free after a short while. The hatchlings are born with fangs and venom that enable them to feed before hibernating for winter.
The copperheads are also sociable species that can be found in clusters in the wild. Therefore, you can also keep several in the same enclosure. Cleaning the cage correctly and routinely will keep your snake healthy.Provide a large water dish in the snake’s habitat for drinking and soaking. Ensure that you change this dish daily and clean it thoroughly weekly to prevent bacteria from growing in it. Remove the mice from the enclosure if the snake fails to feed on them.Your copperhead snake is susceptible to several health issues that occur when hygiene is not maintained correctly. Mouth rot is a common infection resulting from improper diet, mouth injury, or an unclean environment. Bloody gum is the result of this illness.Organisms such as ticks, worms, lice, coccidian, and protozoa can cause parasitic infections to your copperhead snake. You can use dewormers to treat your snake for these infections. An unhealthy copperhead snake will have weight loss issues, you will find it stargazing, it will have problems when shedding skin, and it will breathe with its mouth.Improper shedding of the skin of the snake is another sign of infection. This can be corrected by ensuring that the enclosure is dry. Provide numerous hiding places for your copperhead and designate a basking spot when setting up the cage.Your copperhead will exhibit the following signs when it is healthy:
How Dangerous Are Copperheads and Corn Snakes?
Copperheads are venomous. They attack easily when they feel threatened. Although their venom is not fatal to humans, it’s a painful and irritating bite.Corn snakes are easily intimidated and are likely to get away when they feel threatened. However, a corn snake is easy to handle, even for beginners. They do not even bite their prey rather than constrict it until it is dead.Strive not to harm a snake, especially if it’s not attacking you. Most probably, it will not make the first move unless it feels threatened. However, seek medical attention in case you get bitten by the copperhead.