Brace Yourself…There’s a Snake in Kentucky That Can’t Be Killed
So, here's the deal. Whether many of us like it or not, snakes are, for the most part, far more beneficial to us than not. Yeah, I can't wrap my brain around that, either.
My sister is a good example of why. She's deathly afraid of mice and rats, so she has no problem with snakes, whatsoever. The enemy of my enemy is my friend, and all that. So, yes, snakes take out pests. Or they keep them at bay. Both are good things.
The Benefits -- and Yes, They Exist -- of Snakes
I'm just not personally ready to call snakes "good things." Oh, who am I kidding? I'll never be ready. But I'm also not planning on killing a snake, either. To do that, you'd have to be pretty close to one, and that's not happening. And from a legal standpoint, that's also a smart move because I wouldn't want to kill the wrong one.
The Snake in Kentucky You Cannot Kill
Yes, there is a "wrong one." And here's a pile of them.
Meet the Copperbelly Water Snake
Not only is it illegal to harm or kill copperbelly water snake, but you can't even own one. And that's because it's on a list of endangered species and that makes it off limits, according to this 50-year-old piece of legislation:
Threatened snakes are protected by the Endangered Species Act 1973. Killing these snake species is illegal. Most states regulate snake hunting and designate snakes as non-game animals, or impose strict bag limits on snakes. Snake killing laws also vary by U.S. state.
Conservationists, like these folks in Ohio, do surveys of endangered species like the copperbelly snake. Here, they're doing their thing near Lake Erie.
So, is a copperbelly water snake REALLY something to worry about in the first place? According to the U.S. Department of Fish & Wildlife, not really. I'd imagine the threatened species might bite if it was provoked, but there's no venom. (That doesn't matter to me; the FANGS matter to me.)
I wish any and all copperbelly water snakes long and happy lives, since they are under the figurative gun. Hey, I don't care for snakes, but these aren't bothering me. Plus, I actually think their coloring is extraordinary.
I would love to see one someday...with a thick pane of glass separating us.