Critters to Avoid in Alabama

 

Like with most states, there are some critters and pests that you should avoid. Some because they’re deadly and poisonous, others just because they can potentially be dangers. 

 

Brown Widow Spider

This is one of Alabama’s venomous spider, however only the female spiders will bite. When the spider bites, it injects a neurotoxic venom. This is typically not life-threatening and considered to be less serious than a black widow spider bite, however, the bites will cause some local pain and a red mark at the site of injection. Bites are usually accidental. 

The color of the brown widow spider is tan to brown and the egg sac is covered in tiny spikes. 

 

Red Wasps

These pests are common throughout Alabama. They build their nests in houses, barns and other areas. The females will sting to protect the nests--these stings are normally aggressive and very painful. Many people tend to have severe allergic reactions that require medical attention while others just experience discomfort and minor swelling. 

 

Feral Hogs

These creatures cause a big problem for many landowners in AL and other southern states. They destroy farmland and habitats for other native animals. They also breed quickly and can overpopulate in a matter of months. The tusks are incredibly sharp and can cause severe wounds, damage, and even death. These animals are very mean, so it’s best to steer clear from them at all possible. 

 

Mice and Rats

Mice love to live in homes and barns--anywhere they can find shelter, really. They multiply very fast and carry a number of diseases. Where there is one mouse, chances are there are many others in the same area. Rats are bigger and love to live in the same places as mice. However, these pests are more destructive because of how much bigger they are. They carry just as many diseases and multiply just as quickly. Whichever pest is a problem, it’s best to call an exterminator to avoid getting bit and risking disease. 

 

Alligators

These large reptiles can be very dangerous when humans and other domesticated animals get too close to them. They are territorial and aggressive creatures and will attack to protect themselves and their homes. Alert authorities if you spot one in your yard--do not try to remove it on your own!

 

Coral Snake

This medium-sized and slender snake has a short, blunt head. The body has alternating, complete rings of red, yellow and black that go all down the snake’s body. The head is black and has a broad yellow stripe that goes around it. These are not considered to be aggressive snakes, but they do have the most toxic venom of any North American snake. Because of this, they should never be handled and they are potentially very hazardous to humans 

 

Ticks

While most ticks do carry Lyme disease, many of the ticks in Alabama carry Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever. After hiking or spending time in woodland areas, check yourself and your family or friends for ticks. 

 

Pigmy Rattlesnake

These are sometimes called ‘ground rattlers’ and they are miniature rattlesnakes. They range from 15 to 24 inches in length and the tip of their tail has a very small rattle that is often difficult to hear. These snakes will sit coiled up for up to 3 weeks waiting for prey. When they bite, they inject venom. If bitten, it’s best to seek medical attention immediately. 

 

Eastern Diamondback Rattlesnake

This is the largest species of rattlesnakes in the world and can reach up to 7 feet in length. The top of the snake has yellow diamond shapes with black and brown centers while the belly is yellowish. This snake will often remain still when encountered unless touched or a threat is perceived. The venom of this snake attacks the blood, tissue and nervous system. Seek medical help immediately if bit. 

 

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