Greetings from southern Illinois. Let’s see what kind of cool stuff that can be found in the next few days. The first snake of the trip was this young Western Cottonmouth.
The cottonmouth is a dark, stout, thick-bodied venomous snake. The name “cottonmouth” is derived from the snake’s habit of opening its mouth in a defensive posture when it feels threatened. Other names for this snake are “water moccasin” and “trap jaw.”
This is a snake that is usually found in or around water. When swimming, the cottonmouth holds its head above water with most of its body barely touching the surface.
The young wiggle their tails so that the yellow tip appears to be a small worm. When small frogs and lizards see the wriggling tail, they think it’s something to eat and rush forward to grab it, only to be eaten by the baby cottonmouth.