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What Type of Snake Is in My House?

Identifying Snakes in Maryland

The Maryland Department of Natural Resources (DNR) has cataloged two types of venomous snakes and 25 non-venomous snakes indigenous to the state. With Baltimore’s close proximity to the water, marshlands, and a variety of flora and fauna, snakes have an ideal habitat from which to hunt prey and also places to hide from predators.

It’s a good idea for homeowners in Maryland to familiarize themselves with the types of snakes they may encounter in or around their property. However, one should never assume they’ve correctly identified a snake as non-venomous so, therefore, label it as not-dangerous. Even non-venomous snakes can pose serious risks when provoked.

According to Maryland’s DNR, the following snakes can be found in habitats throughout the state:

Venomous Snakes in Baltimore Maryland:

Homeowners should be especially mindful of two types of snakes known as “pit vipers” for the placement of heat-sensing pits on their heads:


Both snakes use a powerful venom that’s called hemotoxic for its effect on blood cells and tissue. After being injected, hemotoxic venom damages tissue, kills blood cells, and can cause hemorrhaging or even cardiac arrest. While bites are not often fatal if treated promptly, they are extremely painful and can leave injuries that last a lifetime.

Non-Venomous Snakes in Maryland:

These non-venomous varieties can still pack a mean punch if provoked enough to bite. Some of the species listed use constriction to kill their prey and can be harmful to small pets or livestock. However, most are harmless and some are even docile. As with any snake, caution is usually the best course and snake handling should be left to a professional.

  • Common Watersnake (Nerodia sipedon)
  • Plain-bellied Watersnake (Nerodia erythrogaster)
  • Queensnake (Regina septemvittata)
  • Smooth Earthsnake (Virginia valeriae)
  • Mountain Earthsnake (Virginia valeriae pulchra)
  • Northern Brownsnake aka Dekay’s Brownsnake (Storeria dekayi)
  • Red-bellied Snake (Storeria occipitomaculata)
  • Common Gartersnake aka Garden Snake (Thamnophis sirtalis)
  • Eastern Ribbonsnake (Thamnophis sauritus)
  • Northern Ring-necked Snake (Diadophis punctatus edwardsii)
  • Southern Ring-necked Snake (Diadophis punctatus punctatus)
  • Common Wormsnake (Carphophis amoenus)
  • Smooth Greensnake (Opheodrys vernalis)
  • Rough Greensnake (Opheodrys aestivus)
  • Eastern Hog-nosed Snake (Heterodon platirhinos)
  • Rainbow Snake (Farancia erytrogramma)
  • North American Racer (Coluber constrictor)
  • Eastern Pinesnake (Pituophis melanoleucus)
  • Red Cornsnake (Pantherophis guttatus)
  • Eastern Ratsnake (Pantherophis alleghaniensis)
  • Northern Mole Kingsnake (Lampropeltis rhombomaculata)
  • Eastern Kingsnake (Lampropeltis getula)
  • Eastern Milksnake (Lampropeltis triangulum)
  • Coastal Plain Milksnake (Lampropeltis triangulum elapsoides X triangulum)
  • Scarletsnake​ (Cemophora coccinea)

Even if you’re relatively sure of the type of snake in your home, it’s always best to be cautious when approaching a snake. Non-venomous snakes can still have nasty bites and their mouths are full of harmful bacteria that can quickly lead to infection. Brody Brothers Pest Control snake exterminators understand the different types of snakes in Maryland and can employ removal tactics known to work best for each species and the environment where they’ve been found.