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SNAKE ALERT: High chance of seeing a snake in coming months

QUEENSLAND Ambulance Service paramedics have been called to more than 500 snakebite cases already this year.

Of those, 30 were in the Wide Bay region which included multiple cases in the Fraser Coast region.

With summer, comes an increase of snake and human interaction, and a bigger threat of a toxic bite.

Paramedics are warning residents to be on the lookout for snakes and know what to do if bitten.

List of snake catcher numbers for the Fraser Coast

Wide Bay chief superintendent Russell Cooke said paramedics saw the increase in snake numbers this time of year is normal.

"Queensland is home to some of the most dangerous species of snakes, including the Eastern brown and the Red-bellied black snake, and all are capable of delivering a lethal bite," he said.

"(Wide Bay paramedics) are expecting a spike in incidents as the weather warms up."

Mr Cooke warned people to be cautious when working outdoors or traversing in a snake's habitat, such as when out bushwalking.

"If you're cleaning up your property, be careful shifting timber, iron sheeting or similar materials as snakes can be lingering nearby," he said.

"Also avoid walking through long grass, but if you have to, wear enclosed shoes and long pants and carry a compression bandage with you.

"Make your property less attractive to snakes by disposing of food properly, including pet food, and keeping animal enclosures such as aviaries clean to prevent rodents such as mice and rats."

Mr Cooke urged everyone to have a first aid kit handy to treat a bite and to have a clear understanding of what to do in an emergency.

"A snakebite can be fatal so always call 000 immediately, and keep the patient as calm as possible to reduce the spread of venom around the body," he said. "Don't wash the wound, as the hospital may need to test the area to identify the snake. 

"Bandage over the snakebite firmly, then work up the limb starting at the extremities (fingers and toes) and splint the limb to keep it straight."

Topics:  fraser coast queensland ambulance service snake wide bay



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