YouTube: Brave Wilderness

Coyote Peterson Gets Up Close and Personal With Copperhead Snake

We all know to stay away from copperheads, but how dangerous are they really?

Surely you've heard of Coyote Peterson by now, but you probably know him as the guy who lets venomous creatures sting and bite him to rate the different levels of pain inflicted by each.

However, Peterson's YouTube channel, "Brave Wilderness," actually covers a lot more than just the daring pain tolerance challenges. Peterson actually offers a lot of useful information.

One of the most popular sectors of wildlife biology is that of wild snakes, particularly venomous ones. While many of the more fascinating snakes slither through international soil, the United States offers some pretty incredible herpetology.

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On this expedition, Peterson is trekking through West Virginia on the hunt for a timber rattlesnake, which unfortunately doesn't yield much in results at first. He and his crew do get to traverse some breathtaking terrain and even find what looks like a black bear den, but the party doesn't start until they stumble upon a copperhead.

Lucky for us, Peterson offers an up-close look at one of the most iconic venomous snakes in the eastern U.S. and even extends some of his own personal knowledge on the species.

Watch the video below:

Well, there you have it. Copperhead snake bites certainly can be deadly, but they don't carry the same level of potency of bites from say a water moccasin, an eastern diamondback, a timber rattlesnake or a western diamondback.

A good way to tell the difference in toxicity among pit vipers, according to Peterson, is by going off size.

"A bigger snake means a larger venom yield," he says.

As you can see when he exhibits the "tubing" method for a closer look, copperheads strongly resemble nonvenomous reptiles such as water snakes and fox snakes, often drawing incorrect identifications out in the field.

Where copperheads pose the biggest threat is in their visibility. These snakes can camouflage themselves as well as any venomous snake in North America, so be sure to watch your step out there!