Walking the Boardwalk at the Beidler Forest
On our visit to the Beidler Forest manager Matt Johnson spotted five snakes – three water moccasins and two banded water snakes. To distinguish between them, see if the eyeball is round and therefore a non-venomous water snake rather than the moccasins’ slit-eyed pupil. But that means using binoculars or getting too close for safety!
Of course, at Beidler you can enjoy spotting snakes without worrying as you are walking on a mile and a three-quarter quarter length boardwalk that shows very different mini ecosystems of the overall flooded forest, some areas had more tupelo and cypress trees, in other slightly drier areas lots of ground palmettos flourished. Other pockets had swamp elm and pumpkin ash, the woody shrub Virginia sweetspire which was in full beautiful bloom, and on fallen logs where sunlight reached and soil accumulated, grasses, sedges, and even some yellow wildflowers.