If I had any doubt that what I was holding was actually a snake, that was enough to dispel all uncertainty. However the Diamond Back Water Snakes range is generally all of Texas, except most of west Texas and the Panhandle (, How can you identify the non venomous Diamond Back Water Snake from the venomous Western Cottonmouth. I regularly catch Blotched Watersnakes around 4 feet long. They do not really hurt when they bite but it will bleed quite a bit. Keep a 15-20′ wide strip mowed around your pond, lake, or river front. The star of the show is a lake monster said to inhabit the lake, who is sometimes affectionately called “Ole Hippie.” The description of the mysterious beast varies, with some saying it looks like a huge fish and others saying it has more of an appearance keeping in line with the classic Nessie image, but whatever it is seems to be out of place in a manmade reservoir. He says: In 2003 I was fishing, (alone of course), on Lake Travis and saw a large snake crawl from one point of a cove to the other. There are of course unconfirmed tales of ones even bigger than this, and there have been reports of divers encountering catfish down there as big as cars, leading to speculation that these monsters have had something to do with the inordinate amount of drownings and disappearances that occur here, with around 20 such incidents within the last 5 years alone. Perhaps the most misunderstood, and loathsome, of these is the snake. Among these frogs, fish, turtles, snakes, water fowl, cattails, and water lillies. However the Diamond Back Water Snakes range is generally all of Texas, except most of west Texas and the Panhandle (see distribution images below). The aquatic ecosystem is home to numerous plant and animal species. The water snakes occurring in north-central Texas primarily consume frogs. Now I have been hunting for over 44 years and have been fishing much longer than that. It is worth noting that the lake is absolutely full of catfish, some of which are known to reach enormous sizes, with the record for the lake being a 54.78 lb. Also notice the round pupils. “Chain like” markings readily visible unless covered with algae or silt. While the garter snake is often seen in gardens, around the lakes and ponds here in Austin one is more likely to encounter the blotched water snake (Nerodia erythrogaster transversa) and diamondback water snake (Nerodia rhombifera rhombifera). WESTERN RIBBON SNAKE. The witnesses gave a report to the Mutual UFO Network (MUFON), and claim that they did not see the object at the time, but rather noticed it later when they looked through video they had taken. The teeth all point inwards so the snake can grip anything from slimy frogs to slippery fish. While the garter snake is often seen in gardens, around the lakes and ponds here in Austin one is more likely to encounter the blotched water snake (Nerodia erythrogaster transversa) and diamondback water snake (Nerodia rhombifera rhombifera). Blind snakes cannot bite because they have a very small mouth, and are extremely beneficial, eating mostly termites and ants. However, juveniles exhibit blotchy cross banding alternating between light and dark. The blotched water snake on the lily pads pictured at left was photographed in one of the ponds at Zilker. It more likely has to do with the steep drops, currents, and the extremely murky water here, but who knows? Mysterious Universe is a property of 8th Kind Pty Ltd, Recent Mutant Shark Catches: a Two-Headed, an Albino and a One-Eyed Albino, Assorted Bizarre Tales of People Abducted by Fairies. Diamond Back Watersnakes are aggressive when cornered or disturbed. Texas is home to four venomous snakes: copperheads, rattlesnakes, water moccasins (aka cottonmouths), and coral snakes. Website created to assist in the identification of snakes in North Texas. I have had many more interesting encounters with snakes than I have been able to photograph, including watching a hognose snake eat a toad (which took about 20 minutes), observing a beautiful rough green snake slither along a dusty gravel road, and having a very large, dark snake (I'm not sure of the species) fall on my shoulder when I was climbing a heavily forested hillside. These snakes are found around any type of water in Texas. Keeping these things in mind provides us with guidelines to he… These snakes co-exist with the Diamond Back Watersnake. The lake itself is 18,622 acres and has a maximum depth of 190 feet, and it is known for its lack of sandy beaches, rocky banks, steep cliffs, and bluffs, and its nudist beach, called Hippie Hollow. AUSTIN, Texas — People who live in a southeast Austin neighborhood are a little rattled by a snake infestation. Water is the most unique substance on Earth and it has many special features and characteristics. The scarlet king snake can sometimes be mistaken for a coral snake, but the shape of their heads is quite different and the order of red, black and yellow bands is also distinct (although I can never remember what it is specifically). Limit the amount of debris touching the ground. It will even remain limp if picked up. The most common water snakes in all of Texas and much of the southeast is the non-venomous Diamond Back Water Snake (Nerodia rhombifer rhombifer) and the venomous Western Cottonmouth (Agkistrodon piscivorous leucostoma). Characteristics: Small rattlesnake with a grey body and dark spots patterned down its back. Their … There are several species of water snakes in Texas. Adding to the weirdness of the lake is a recent report from August of 2018, when boaters on Lake Travis claimed they saw a rod shaped UFO go soaring over the lake at high speeds. This species will relax after handling and can be gentle once they have had time to calm down. Of those 300 I have only come across 4 Water Moccains. Lake Travis was born in 1937, when the Mansfield Dam, originally called Marshall Ford, was built by the Lower Colorado River Authority (LCRA) at Austin, Texas, for the purpose of controlling floods and providing a water source for the community, and the dam itself is a hydroelectric power plant that generates power for a good portion of central Texas. There are several venomous snakes in our area, but there are far more nonvenomous species. Tags Bizarre cryptid Cryptozoology ghosts lake lake mysteries Monsters of Texas mysterious places Texas UFOs unexplained phenomena. Coral snakes are rarely seen according to the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department. off of the ground, these can make an excellent hiding place for snakes. It seems like you never know what you might see. Blind snakes are smooth, have an iridescent sheen, and the eyes are nearly invisible. I have seen beaver, nutria, deer, coyotes, bobcats, dogs, cats (yes, cats), goats, sheep, mules, horses….etc, ad nauseum, swimming in rivers and lakes before. The Body The largest feature you can identify first is the body. The close-up photo of a blind snake was taken of one found dead in our lawn. Although their mouths are smaller than most venomous snakes, they can still inflict a serious bite if handled. Lake Travis was born in 1937, when the Mansfield Dam, originally called Marshall Ford, was built by the Lower Colorado River Authority (LCRA) at Austin, Texas, for the purpose of controlling floods and providing a water source for the community, and the dam itself is a hydroelectric power plant that generates power for a good portion of central Texas. It made us think twice about the safety of this lake. These snakes have beautiful brown markings and can often be seen in the ponds at Zilker Gardens or anywhere around Town Lake. They will attempt to bite you if you handle them. It writhed constantly and felt very muscular as I picked it up. The most common water snakes in all of Texas and much of the southeast is the non-venomous Diamond Back Water Snake (, ). There’s something in that lake. They are probably just trying to get drier and warmer, and they seem to climb quite well. © Copyright 2008 - 2020 by My Passion Media Inc. You Say You Want a Revolution? I have personally captured well over 300 water snakes in the time I have spent hunting reptiles. Rough Earth Snake Video. Harmless. Non-venomous rat snakes are widespread in Texas, pose no threat, and are good rodent predators. Both species eat the same diet of fish, amphibians and crawfish. The Water Moccasin is venomous and will require a trip to the hospital if bitten. In my 20 years of fishing on Lake Travis, I’ve never seen anything like this. The Diamond Back Watersnake reaches close to 6 feet in length and specimens between 4 and 5 feet are quite common. They eat fish, frogs, crayfish and anything else around the water. There are some characteristics that can help identify them without being right next to one (see the table below). The pretty little redstripe ribbon snake (Thamnophis proximus rubrilineatus) shown above was photographed at Zilker Gardens, which is a also a particularly good place to see both garter and water snakes. This is because its largest teeth are in the rear of its mouth, which is efficient for small amphibious prey, but almost useless against predatory animals. WESTERN RATSNAKE. Next Page. All non-venomous snakes in the United States have round eyes. The Water Moccasin feeds are the same food that the Diamond Back Water Snake and the Blotched Watersnake feed on. I have captured them in lakes, ponds, rivers and even in my koi pond in the back yard. VENOMOUS. DIAMONDBACK WATERSNAKE. Texas Snake ID. The dam holds Lake Austin on one side, and Lake Travis on the other, and they are both reservoirs more than an actual lakes, but this has not stopped the stories of strangeness orbiting Lake Travis, and although very obscure, reports of monsters and other weird things have come in from here over the years. Snakes play a key role in any ecosystem as they are both predator and prey. Do not discourage large birds like egrets and herons. There are four kinds of venomous snakes in Central Texas: the coral snake, the copperhead, cottonmouths (water moccasins) and rattlesnakes. A common misconception about snakes is that most of them are venomous. Diamond Back WatersnakeThe Diamond Back Watersnake is the largest of the three species I am going to talk about. While hognose snakes are adept at burrowing, if they are caught out in the open, they have almost no real defenses. Specimens reach 5 to 6 feet. As our population continues to grow, and people continue to move into 'pristine' and 'untouched' areas, encounters with venomous snakes are going to occur. On occasions, specimens are known to take advantage of small fish trapped in shrinking pools that were drying out from a summer … Water Moccasins also have a cat shaped pupil. My first encounter with one occurred when it happened to appear in the middle of our kitchen floor one night, following torrential rains. One thing that drives me nuts is how people assume all snakes that live in or around water are Water Moccasins. How can you identify the non venomous Diamond Back Water Snake from the venomous Western Cottonmouth. Lake monsters, giant snakes, alligators, humanoids, and UFOs. Make sure when you are mowing this strip that the clippings do not go directly into the pond or lake, this will encourage algae blooms. Basic Lake Construction Techniques, with a Focus on Clay Compaction. Head about the size of both my fists. This final trick looks very convincing, with the tongue hanging out loosely and the snake lying on its back. (I have personally had these snakes pursue me in my boat while performing pond and lake management activities), Pits between eyes and nostrils, hence a pit viper, Tabular data from Texas Snakes, Werler & Dixon, 2000. It is hard to know what to make of it, but it has been much discussed online as being everything from a ghost, to Bigfoot, to a hoax. What does this photo show? The snakes like the protection of brush and grasses, it makes them feel secure. Garter snakes are just as likely to be seen in the the low bushes and other vegetation as crawling around on the rocks. Find out how to tell the difference between a water snake and a water moccasin and what a yellow bellied water snake, black water snake, blotched water snake and a broad banded water snake look like. Could the tales of the Lake Travis monster have their origins in some sort of large snake or alligator?