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  #1  
Old 13 August 2007, 09:07 PM
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Snake Snake chases pregnant women

Comment: I heard an old wise (wives) tale that a black racer snakes chase
pregnant women. Is this true?
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  #2  
Old 13 August 2007, 11:47 PM
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My mom swears Granny was bit by a snake when mom was in utero. That's why we're always cold.
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  #3  
Old 16 August 2007, 09:43 PM
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I don't think that snakes can tell when someone is pregnant. And most snakes prefer to flee or hide, not chase. Actually I don't know of any "chasing" snakes though people have told me water moccasins will chase people. I have seen many of them in my life, however, and all of them have done everything in their power to get away from me. None have ever chased me.
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Old 17 August 2007, 01:15 AM
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Cervus Cervus is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MiddleEye View Post
And most snakes prefer to flee or hide, not chase. Actually I don't know of any "chasing" snakes though people have told me water moccasins will chase people.
Yes! This happened to me once and I was totally surprised and a little freaked out, because it goes against everything I've ever learned or observed in snakes.

I was hiking a trail and had stopped by a swampy area to rest. I'd been sitting down on the ground and when I stood up, a water moccasin was coiled up right behind me. It hadn't been in the vicinity when I sat down (it was a sandy area and I always check for bugs or nearby critters). It struck at me, and I jumped up with a little yelp (:o) and jumped away. Then it chased after me for several feet until I outran it. Usually when a snake strikes at a threat, and that threat runs away, the snake won't persue it. This one did!
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Old 17 August 2007, 01:47 AM
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Cervus, that has to be the ultimate herpetophobe's nightmare. Aiiieee!
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  #6  
Old 17 August 2007, 04:24 AM
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Haha. I guess his eyes were bigger than his stomach. I have seen about ten of them my entire life and none of them bothered with me. I came upon one once by surprise and I think I scared him much more than he did me. I was fishing on a dock and he slithered up to get on top of it and there i was. He didn't realize I was there at first, but as soon as he did he flew off the side of the thing and took off like a bat out of hell. My husband wanted to find it to kill it, but what's the point? The god damned thing was gone. Chasing after it would have just been asking for a bite. Especially since we were way out on the back of the property nowhere near any livestock or houses.
Your being chased sucks though. Ha. I'm sure it was terrifying. Like my grandfather used to say though, "A good scare every now and then is good for the heart. Clears the cholesterol out of there." Course he had no idea what he was talking about...
The real question though is, were you pregnant when it chased you?
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Old 17 August 2007, 07:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cervus View Post
Yes! This happened to me once and I was totally surprised and a little freaked out, because it goes against everything I've ever learned or observed in snakes.

I was hiking a trail and had stopped by a swampy area to rest. I'd been sitting down on the ground and when I stood up, a water moccasin was coiled up right behind me. It hadn't been in the vicinity when I sat down (it was a sandy area and I always check for bugs or nearby critters). It struck at me, and I jumped up with a little yelp (:o) and jumped away. Then it chased after me for several feet until I outran it. Usually when a snake strikes at a threat, and that threat runs away, the snake won't persue it. This one did!
Same thing happened to my mom. We lived in the "bottoms" and she was in the woods gathering something for some crafty thing that she was doing and one got close enough to bite her pants leg but it didn't bite her. She ran and it chased her until she outran it.
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  #8  
Old 01 October 2007, 07:16 PM
Private Number
 
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Snake

Quote:
Originally Posted by MiddleEye View Post
I don't think that snakes can tell when someone is pregnant. And most snakes prefer to flee or hide, not chase. Actually I don't know of any "chasing" snakes though people have told me water moccasins will chase people. I have seen many of them in my life, however, and all of them have done everything in their power to get away from me. None have ever chased me.
Can't a lot of different animals sense pregnancy hormones, though? I mean, I know anecdote does not equal data, but I know that my ball python acts much different towards me than she did before I was preggers. Of course, she gets much closer to me than I would imagine just any old snake chilling in the wild would.
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Old 01 October 2007, 10:39 PM
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My friend and I were chased by a water moccasin when we were nine. I don't know how far because I never looked back until I was home-about a mile! I went from being afraid of snakes to being deathly afraid of snakes.
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  #10  
Old 01 October 2007, 11:55 PM
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Brad from Georgia Brad from Georgia is offline
 
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Most water snakes are nonvenomous--around here people think every water snake is a cottonmouth moccasin, but in fact they're really extremely rare in these parts. But down in Florida, they're quite common. My old friend Bill Cribbs of the Valdosta State University Biology Department told me that moccasins are almost unique among snakes because they are very aggressive. Bill said he always thought they were mostly bluff, and that they would lunge toward an interloper in their territory, but if said interloper retreated, the snake would quickly give up the chase.

That relieved me (we were going into the heart of the Okefenokee at the time), but then Bill laconically added, "'Course, I've been bitten seven times now."

Moccasins, by the way, are not like rattlers, who strike quickly, then recoil. A moccasin has relatively short fangs, so to deliver a hefty load of venom, they grab aholt and then chomps on you repeatedly without pulling away.
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  #11  
Old 02 October 2007, 12:20 AM
moonfall moonfall is offline
 
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I've always heard black racers (and related snakes) will chase anyone, pregnant or not.

I'm fortunate enough to have avoided close encounters with cottonmouths, but my dad told me the same thing everyone else has said- the old "They're more afraid of you than you are of them" adage doesn't apply to moccasins. They're pretty nasty as far as snakes go.
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  #12  
Old 02 October 2007, 12:34 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Private Number View Post
Can't a lot of different animals sense pregnancy hormones, though? I mean, I know anecdote does not equal data, but I know that my ball python acts much different towards me than she did before I was preggers. Of course, she gets much closer to me than I would imagine just any old snake chilling in the wild would.
Really? How so? It's not in a creepy way, is it?
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  #13  
Old 02 October 2007, 03:15 PM
Private Number
 
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Snake

No, nothing creepy. Normally, she's quite the "loving" snake with me. Loves being held, cuddles up to me, rubs the side of her head against my jaw line, cheeks and even, occassionally, mouth, will crawl right up my arm when I reach into her habitat. And she hasn't been headshy with me since a little while after I got her.

Snakes don't like when you mess around with/near their heads. Some snakes will take it as a threat and strike, others will just pull away. My ball will pull away from a lot of people if they put their hands too near her head/face, but for me she just doesn't seem to care, until recently, when she started pulling away like she does for most other people. That was pretty much the first thing I noticed as her behavior started to change a little bit.

But, especially in the last few months, she wants virtually nothing to do with me. She outright ignores me when I put my arm in her habitat, or even retreats into her hiding space. She doesn't seem to really be all that interested in being near me, and often stays "balled" for awhile when I first pick her up.

If I hold her for a little while, she seems to warm up a bit. She'll stop being so headshy, she'll come out of her tight little ball. It's kind of like it takes her awhile to realize that it's me. And when she does, it's kind of like, "Oh. It's you.... Whatever."

She still loves sleeping in the hoods and front pockets of my sweatshirts, though. And she seems to like the way my stomache moves when she's curled up there.

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  #14  
Old 27 October 2007, 03:28 AM
CatPurrson
 
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Alligator

I haven't heard anything about snakes chasing pregnant women-- I wouldn't be surprised if they could sense (smell) the pregnancy hormones, but I don't see why they'd chase after her.

"An hors d'oeurve tartare..." Anybody know the reference?

I saw a guy doing a presentation at Alligator Adventure in Myrtle Beach one time-- he handled a couple of venomous snakes, including a copperhead, without using one of those hooks. However, he made it a point to mention while he was showing the water moccasin/cottonmouth (I think they're the same thing, but I'm no herpetologist!) that it's the one snake that he only handles with a hook because it's so aggressive. Wish I could remember the other snakes he was working with-- I know that at the end we got our pictures taken with a rather large constrictor around our necks! Gave my mom the heebie-jeebies for sure.

I'd like to have a pet snake *someday*, but I want one that won't grow very large. I'm thinking maybe a corn snake or something similar. I'd *like* one that I could feed insects, as I'm not too keen on the idea of feeding mice to a snake. I like mice too...

CatPurrson
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