While wandering around the Viera Wetlands in March of this year, we found something new photograph, a Water Moccasin. It was a pleasure to see this snake, which was surprisingly large at about four feet in length or perhaps even a bit longer. Deb remained in the car for safety while I got down on the road to get a nice low angle from which to take photographs. It was necessary to move a couple of times as the snake came within the minimum focus distance of the 500mm lens I was using at the time.
It was only after talking with some other people who wandered by that I found out the identity of the snake and also that Water Moccasins were actually pit vipers and venomous. After doing some research I found that Water Moccasins primarily feed on amphibians, other snakes, fish, small mammals and even birds, all of which are found in abundance at the Viera Wetlands. Predators of the Water Moccasin include Snapping Turtles, large wading birds such as Cranes, Herons and Egrets, as well as Eagles, Owls, and Alligators. Many of which are also found at Viera.
Although this was the first time I’d ever seen a large snake at Viera, I guess they occupy an important part of the local ecosystem. I will certainly be more careful the next time I lay down on the embankments in an attempt to get that perfect bird shot!