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Posted by tedn on April 07, 2003 at 17:18:38:
I found a coral snake on Saturday and it reminded me of the first one I caught.
I was about 14 years old and had a keen interest in just about anything that moved especially snakes. While checking out an old building, hoping to find a rat snake, I happened to notice a small snake crawling just outside the door. It had the red yellow black bands encircling it's body but at that time I had never seen a coral snake or scarlet king. I knew it was one or the other but which? Let's see red touch yellow? Red touch black? I couldn't remember. The snake was moving fast and was about to disappear underneath the building. I had to make a quick decision. Taking off my shirt I pounced attempting to confine the snake within the folds of my shirt. Out came the snake biting the shirt in the process, I again flipped a portion of my shirt over the snake attempting to once again wrap up the animal.
Out it came again biting and plenty mad narrowly missing my hand!
Finally I got it under control wrapped up in my shirt. What to do now? I had no snake bags with me so I looking around I found a brown paper bag and dumped the snake into it. Of course when I got home I looked the snake up and found it was a coral snake. I was lucky. If I had been bitten anti-venin had not been developed yet for this type of snake. You can bet after that experience I always was able to recognize a coral snake!