Are Ribbon Snakes Dangerous?

Animals have been a companion of ours since day one. Some are dangerous, others are harmless. Snakes can be a great example. 

While some snake  species can be deadly, other snake species are nearly harmless. Where does the ribbon snake stand?

According to this Florida museum article, the ribbon snakes are not venomous. Which means that they won’t kill you if they bite you. While that makes them very less harmful than other kinds of snakes.

The ribbon snakes are part of a family of snakes called the garter snakes. Generally speaking, garter snakes are harmless and they do not cause serious damage to humans.

With that said, the ribbon snakes can be considered as a non-dangerous species of snakes.

Do Ribbon snakes bite?

Most of the snake species do bite, and ribbon snakes are one of them. Snakes have no legs, no hands, nothing. Some huge snakes like pythons and anacondas are able to choke people to death, however small snakes like the ribbon snakes can’t do that.

So the only defense mechanism a ribbon snake has when it feels danger is it’s mouth. Ribbon snakes may decide to chase you and then bite you.

They are really fast and their moves are sudden. As mentioned earlier, ribbon snakes are usually non-venomous. The bite will be similar to a scratch. 

However, if a ribbon snake’s bite looks serious, then you need to clean the wound very quickly and I would definitely advise you to check your doctor even though the bite might not be dangerous. But it’s always better to be safe than sorry.

How to distinguish a ribbon snake from other similar snakes.

They say a picture is worth a thousand words, here’s a YouTube video that is only 1 minute long to help you distinguish between 3 types of snakes, The Eastern garter , the butler garter and the ribbon snakes.

The 3 of them have yellow stripes on their backs. Usually, the eastern garter snake is bigger than the butler garter snake and the ribbon snake.

What stands out the most in the ribbon snake is that they have white cheek patches and these will help you identify them from the 2 other snake types that were mentioned in the video.

So to identify whether a snake is a ribbon snake or not, ask yourself these 3 questions: does it have yellow stripes? Is it short? Does it have white cheek patches?

If you answer yes to the 3 questions, then the snake in front of you is most probably a harmless ribbon snake.

Can you have a ribbon snake as a pet?

There are many reasons that can make you want a snake as a pet. Let’s say that you decided to have one as a pet, will a ribbon snake be a good option for you?

Eastern ribbon snakes are considered to be one of the favorite pets for many snake owners. These snakes are tiny, are non-venomous and are harmless most of the time.

If you want a ribbon snake as a pet, prepare to be bitten a few times though. You don’t have to worry about that a lot as mentioned earlier.

These snakes are adorable and you can have a great time petting them. It’s very satisfying to see them move while you’re holding them in your hands. You’ll love the feel of the friction of the contact between their strong skin and your skin.

Ribbon snakes also look great. They can be considered a very beautiful species of snakes and that’s one extra reason to have them as a pet. The yellow stripes on their backs are enough to make you fall in love with them.

To summarize

Ribbon snakes are not dangerous most of the time. They are not venomous. They do bite however and they are fast. So if you want to have one as a pet, just be careful of how you deal with it.