Missouri is home to several species of pit vipers. I had my first encounter while searching for salamanders in April. It was a densely wooded area where I overturned some moist wood and much to my surprise I had found my first copperheads, and a new county record for the species. Copperheads are a very abundant species. I have most often found them in or near open areas, wedged in rock crevices or under flat objects. Most of the ones I have found in MO are a brown color but I have found very light colored specimens and a few pinkish ones. The timber rattlesnakes can also be found in MO, though they are more localized than copperheads. I have found them in fields between forest pockets and in or near rock crevices. Occasionally, they also turn up under flat objects like tin. The cottonmouth lives in the southern parts of the state and can sometimes be found in great numbers where they occur. Since it was a bit of a drive to get to them from St. Louis, I would only encounter them a couple of times per year. I never felt threatened by any of these snakes nor did any ever make any serious attempts to successfully strike me.