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Cottonmouth and Copperhead Combat

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  • Cottonmouth and Copperhead Combat

    Seen this the other day and thought it would be good to put in here.
    http://joshinmo.weebly.com

  • #2
    That is not combat. It is a mating ritual. The two species are members of the same genus and apparently they will mate in areas where their habitats overlaps and exist within close proximity. Whether the eggs produced will be fertile, I don't know if a hybrid would result. Guess I'd have to google the subject. Same type of thing when dogs mate with wolves, etc.

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    • #3
      I know nothing about territorial battles between different species of snakes but that looked more like a courtship dance than a battle to me.
      Bruce
      In life there are losers and finders. Which one are you?

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      • JoshinMO
        JoshinMO commented
        Editing a comment
        Either way I used The Video Owners Title.

    • #4
      One september morning many moons ago I sat down next to a large boulder in the forest up in Seymour CT. It was dark and early and the first time I had hunted the area. Had my bow with me and my friend was in a tree stand nearby. He pointed to the little creek and said follow that about three hundred yards and you will see the boulder. He told me it looks like a great place to hide and hunt from. It was maybe 4 AM I call it Dark and early. LOL. I found the boulder the forest was moon bright and sat down to wait. As I sat there I could hear something next to my right leg rustling in the leaves. There was a raccoon pup off in the distance crying for it's Mother. The Mom was probably a pancake down on the main road. The Raccoon would move left and make its cry then move right and do it again all the while moving closer and closer to me. I love and miss the woods so much in my life I can recall that has happened in the forests. Anyway it gets light enough to finally see and the rustling was two copper heads getting their groove on. I had no idea what to make of it. I thought they were rat snakes. Rat snakes have similar markings to copperheads. I must have sat right on them as they were inches from my right thigh and slowly slithered off moments after the sun rise. The following year I took a wildlife management course provided by the State of CT. I was told that Copper heads are the only snakes that mate in September October in CT and they hatch live young the following spring. The young are born ready to hunt their own food and have fangs and venom even at the small three inch size. I guess I was lucky that morning. No deer walked by but when I got up to leave I walked to the back side of the boulder to relieve myself. There was a pile of Bear dung right there. LOL Unlucky in the hunt but lucky to not be Bear dinner or get snake bit. Very blessed to have seen the baby raccoon and the snakes that day. Learned about the call of a Raccoon and about copperheads because of that outing.
      TN formerly CT Visit our store http://stores.arrowheads.com/store.p...m-Trading-Post

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      • JoshinMO
        JoshinMO commented
        Editing a comment
        Something (assume Raccoon's) lately makes a racket out here around midnight. Sounds like squealing tires and record scratching. Neat Story Matt.

      • Havenhunter
        Havenhunter commented
        Editing a comment
        One year we had a baby raccoon who was paralyzed from mud back down who would drag himself by his front paws to our back door for handouts. It was touching & heartbreaking to see this tiny helpless creature put his trust in us.
        One night we heard what sounded like a sweaky wheel & nails on a chalkboard. The little guy had gotten hung up in the chain link fence. He was stressed & snapped at us every time we tried to touch him so we had no choice but leave him to wail. The noise finally ended & the next day all we found was a few clumps of hair. We never saw him again. 😢

    • #5
      Yea I believe those snakes were confused lol
      As for me and house , we will serve the lord

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      • #6
        Josh, according to a 2016 Natl Geographic article, the woman who took the video sent it to a state herpitoligist who said it was two males sparring over a female, the first documented evidence that snakes of two different species would compete.
        Child of the tides

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        • JoshinMO
          JoshinMO commented
          Editing a comment
          Thanks, I read The description (didn't expect Others to) and that's kind of what I figured. It sure look's funny, but look's can be deceiving.

        • sailorjoe
          sailorjoe commented
          Editing a comment
          Hi Deb. Thanks for checking that out. I had kinda thought it was courtship behavior between a male and female. This is an aspect of copperhead behavior that I didn't learn from my college herpetology course. I did further checking and it looks like the state snake guy knew what he was talking about. Copperhead males apparently do challenge one another for breeding rights. Nothing was said about real fights as often occurs between some species of mammalian males such as moose and deer. Anyway I stand corrected on my interpretation of the behavior I saw.

      • #7
        It sure is an aspect of snake life that I wasn't aware of. Creepy...
        Child of the tides

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        • #8
          Hi Josh. It's me again. I just wanted you to note my comment to HH/Deb regarding my retraction of my first comment to you about the video. Combat it is but more of aggressive posturing than a death fight to the end. Still a very interesting video.

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          • JoshinMO
            JoshinMO commented
            Editing a comment
            OK Thanks, It's definitely interesting. No prob SailorJoe!

        • #9
          That cottonmouth sure has a hefty body. We have copperheads here but the former's range typically begins a bit further south starting at the Great Dismal Swamp. We have non-venomous water snakes here in the millpond that scare the bejesus out of boaters & swimmers who think they are cotton mouths. They can be aggressive acting.
          Child of the tides

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