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All of the dangerous venomous snakes in the U.S come from two families Elapidae (Coral Snakes) and Viperidae (Copperheads, Cottommouths/Moccasins, Rattlesnakes) making identification somewhat simple. All venomous native species in Viperidae share an arrowhead shaped head notably larger than the neck, heat sensing pits, and slanted or non round eyes. All native members of Elapidae in the U.S. share a distinct pattern of red bordering yellow/white stripes while non-venomous mimics have a pattern of red bordering black stripes.

Important Note:
This is true only of U.S. members of Elapidae, color patterns change on the Coral Snakes found in other countries.





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