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photo of copperhead
Loudoun County is home to 19 species of snakes, only two of which are venomous and considered to be dangerous to people or pets: The Northern Copperhead and Timber Rattlesnake.  Many people often misidentify juvenile Black Rat Snakes, juvenile Black Racers, Eastern Hog Nose Snakes, Common Water Snakes, and Red Corn Snakes as being a venomous species. 

As a defensive action snakes will often puff up to look bigger, hiss, or vibrate their tails on the ground (making an audible noise) as a warning if a person or animal is getting too close or if they feel threatened.  Please remember that snakes are a vital part of our ecosystem.  They help to keep rodent and insect populations under control.

What to Expect from Animal Services

When speaking to Loudoun County Animal Services staff you will be asked to describe what the snake looks like.  We can often identify a species of snake by a description given to us over the phone or you may also be asked to email us a picture of the snake.  You may be asked to go online to look at pictures comparing venomous and non-venomous species. An Animal Control Officer will respond to remove a venomous snake from inside a home or highly populated area where it is likely to come into contact with people or pets.  If it is determined that the species of snake is non-venomous then we will provide you with tips and tricks to remove the snake from your home or yard. 

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