Do you have "Ophidiophobia"? It's the fear of snakes. And, don't worry, you're not weird, it's one of the most common phobias. And with good reason, snakes are slimy and squirmy and downright scary looking. Plus, you know, if you get bit by the wrong snake, it could KILL YOU.

Good news for Iowans, although snakes are among the five most dangerous animals in Iowa that could kill you, the majority of snakes found in our state are non-venomous. Of course, that doesn't mean they won't bite you. Actually, very few snakes will deliberately attack a human, but watch out if they're startled or cornered, snakes may strike in self defense. The biggest thing to remember is non-venomous snakes have more rounded heads and round eye pupils. While venomous snakes have flat, triangle-shaped heads and cat-like eyes. However, getting close enough to look at a snake's eyes, might not be the most safe identification method.

A better way to identify a venomous snake in Iowa, is by the rattle on the end of their tail. You might be surprised to find out my top 10 list does NOT include the Timber Rattlesnake. In the past ten years, it's actually been spotted in only 9 of Iowa's 99 counties, mostly in the far northeast and southeast parts of the state. So, unless you're hanging in the deep woods along the Mississippi River, you're unlikely to get bitten by a venomous snake, but in most parts of the rest of the state, you might get a chance to see one of these "Top 10 Most Common Snakes".

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