MIDDLE RIVER, Md. (WJZ) — When one avid outdoorsman and YouTuber set out looking for reptiles last week in Baltimore County, he found more than he ever expected to.

“Let’s get to it and see what we can find,” said Steven Johnson to his camera as he entered Marshy Point Nature Center.

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Setting out to find some snakes, he was underwhelmed with what he saw.

“All I found was a garter snake,” said Johnson.

Then, a copperhead snake found him.

As Johnson walked the trail in his video, a sudden yelp. “oh no no no no no not good not good,” he exclaimed. Johnson then pointed the camera down to his calf, where there were two small dots of blood.

“I felt like I had just run into a thorn bush like something had just hit my leg and I looked down and there’s a copperhead,” said Johnson.

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In the video, Johnson called to a nearby hiker for help. “Could you go get a ranger? I just got bit by a copperhead,” he said.

“It’s the first snake bite in Baltimore County parks in roughly 20 years,” said Ben Porter, Park Manager of the Marshy Point Nature Center. “Although copperheads are found throughout the state of Maryland, people don’t really see them very often.”

Steven likely suffered from a dry bite – meaning the snake didn’t release any venom.

“If venom was injected the pain would have been excruciating,” said Porter.

An important lesson for if you find a snake on a hike: “Just give it its space,” said Porter. “Respect it and let it be in nature where it belongs.”

“It’s still a great time to get out take a walk in the woods,” Porter said. “You just wanna glance down at your feet every now and then!”

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This story was originally published on June 22, 2021.

Annie Rose Ramos