Spring time snakes in Mobile: A dangerous difference? - FOX10 News | WALA

Spring time snakes in Mobile: A dangerous difference?

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MOBILE, AL (WALA) -

FOX10 News has a health alert for you.

Experts say this is the time of year you might start seeing venomous snakes come out in your yards.

An Alabama man learned the danger of venomous snakes the hard way, and there are lessons for all of us.

Family members say Jeffrey Phillips of Gilberttown in west Alabama was outside his home last week when his kids found what he thought was a harmless Kingsnake.

It turned out to be a Coral snake, the second most dangerous snake in the world. 

Family members said the snake bit Phillips and left him paralyzed.

He was rushed to a hospital and put on antivenin, which was flown in to save his life.

Phillips' Mother, Judy Kell, said, "He hopefully will regain some of his use. We just really don't know. He's going to have to learn how to walk, dress himself, eat, and brush his teeth and everything."

Mike Casper of Mobile is a member of a reptile education awareness group.

Casper said, "It's just spring time, so you have a more active, the snakes are more active and people are more active, so those interactions increase this time of the year."

Some of the venomous snakes native to the Mobile area can be found at the Environmental Studies Center as part of its wildlife education programs.

The center also has a display showing the similarity between Coral snakes and Kingsnakes.

Tracy Delcambre with the Environmental Studies Center said, "You can tell the difference by simply looking at their colors.  And we use a little poem that helps the students to remember:  'Red on Yellow, Kill a Fellow.'  That, of course, would be the Coral snake.  And 'Red on Black, Friend of Jack,' meaning it can be a friend of people because it can help eliminate the venomous snakes that are around you."

But if you find any kind of snake in your yard, Casper has this advice.

He said, "If you have not spent some time educating yourself on what they are, then the best thing to do is to just leave them alone."

FOX10 News is digging deeper and trying to find out how many snake bite cases local authorities have handled.

We've reached out to Mobile Fire-Rescue where officials said they are still looking up the numbers.

All content © 2018, WALA; Mobile, AL. (A Meredith Corporation Station). All Rights Reserved. 
 

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