Problem With Your Water in Iowa? It Could be Bullsnakes…
Imagine this: You work for a water treatment company in Iowa and your boss tells you to go check out a faulty well in the town of Latimer, in Franklin County. (Around 70 miles west of Waterloo)
So, you arrive and raise the pipe from the well and you immediately discover the problem. Not just ONE snake, UP TO NINE BULLSNAKES coiled around the well.
Mort’s Water Company of Latimer posted on the company’s Facebook page:
This is one of the main reasons why the top of your well casing should be properly sealed. Those are 8 - 9 bull snakes wrapped around pump drop pipe pulled out of a well. They got down the well through the top of a poorly sealed well casing.
The Bullsnake (sometimes called a ‘Gopher Snake’) is one of the longest snakes in North America and the longest found in Iowa. (There are nearly 30 species of snakes in Iowa) It can grow up to a length of eight feet. They are non-venomous and their diet mainly consists of mice, moles, rats, gophers, squirrels, and some birds and lizards. They are even considered ‘helpful’ because of the large number of crop-destroying rodents that they devour.
They can be found throughout North America including all of the United States, portions of Mexico, and even in Canada.
The bullsnake is considered a species of special concern in Iowa. It is not endangered but could be in trouble because of habitat loss in the state. It is also illegal to kill or collect this species by law in Iowa. They prefer native sand prairie, tallgrass prairie, bluff prairie, oak savanna, and pasture, according to herpnet.org.
There are over 40 large, dark blotches that are in the neck region, lighter brown or reddish-brown on its midsection, with dark black bands or rings on the tail. The head is usually yellow or brown and is boldly marked with black, including a stripe across the top of the head from eye to eye.
Iowa’s Top 10 Most Common Snakes
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