Originally Posted by Matthaus Hetzenauer
While going through Army basic and AIT at Ft. Leonard Wood, MO., I ran across several copperheads while traipsing around in the boonies. Then again, that was in the late 1970s, so maybe they've been cleared out by now.
Someone died (might be wrong but i know they were bitten by one in a tent) from a copperhead bite within the last couple years, and it was down that way. There are poisonous snakes around, but I'm sure a lot more down south than up here.
Everything I have read says there has been a pretty large decline in absolute numbers of reptiles and amphibians in North America, and that tracks with what I have observed personally. I saw a lot more snakes on the interstates back in the '70s than in the 2000s.
Up here, you can find snakes, but mostly just garter snakes, occasional blacksnakes. The only snakes that seem to thrive are water snakes, presumably because the turkeys don't get them, and they stay off the roads so they don't get run over. When I used to drive the back roads almost daily, I would see no more than six snakes run over per year, and usually more like 3-4. Same thing with amphibians. There are a few salamanders, but not many. Frogs, bullfrogs and others, still plenty of those. Turkey and deer thrive. Basically, northern Missouri features turkey and deer, raccoons and opposums. Everything else is a minor player. We do have a fair number of foxes and skunks. Plenty of coyotes and squirrels. A fair number of bobcats, though you don't see them unless you're a farmer working land daily. But even rabbits are not as common as one would think. I see more rabbits in town than in the country.