Are the snakes popping up in downtown Toledo dangerous? Only if - News, Weather, Sports, Toledo, OH

Are the snakes popping up in downtown Toledo dangerous? Only if you try to pick them up

Northern Watersnake sunning itself on banks of Maumee River (Source: WTOL) Northern Watersnake sunning itself on banks of Maumee River (Source: WTOL)
Northern Watersnake swimming in Maumee River near downtown (Source: WTOL) Northern Watersnake swimming in Maumee River near downtown (Source: WTOL)
TOLEDO, OH (WTOL) -

Some people are fascinated by them.

Some are scared to death.

And now, snakes are popping up downtown, of all places.

The snakes can be seen along the Maumee River, so we went to the experts at Maumee Bay State Park.

What are they and could they hurt you?

On Thursday, we took a picture of a snake swimming the Maumee at the foot of Jefferson Avenue and another picture of a snake sunning itself on a rock along the sidewalk.

Today, the snakes were back and apparently love hanging out there.

Lauren Broddrick is a naturalist at Maumee Bay State Park, and is very familiar with the species.

Maumee Bay has one of their own at the nature center.

According to Broddrick, Northern Watersnakes are common in the area and fortunately, are non-venomous.

It is breeding season so they're out in big numbers looking for a mate.

They prefer streams and slow moving waters like the banks of the Maumee River in downtown Toledo.

And while they don't have venom, Broddrick said Northern Watersnakes are mean-tempered and have a ferocious bite if you try to pick them up.

They don’t have fangs but do have many backward-facing teeth that can easily pierce the skin.

They also have other unpleasant defense mechanisms.

“It might bite you, it might musk on you and usually as a last resort, it will actually vomit what it just ate, which they eat fish. So not only will you be bitten by a snake and musked on by a snake, you also will be covered in fish vomit. Not fun,” Broddrick said.

She also said you shouldn’t let these snakes keep you from swimming this summer.

They will see you as a potential predator and should swim away from you.

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Tim Miller
Anchor/Investigative Reporter
WTOL 11
730 N. Summit Street
Toledo, OH 43604
Phone: (419) 461-5751   
 
 
 
 


 

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