ASHEBORO, N.C. (WGHP) — The North Carolina Zoo closed off the Kidzone after a copperhead bit a 5-year-old child on Thursday afternoon.
The zoo has trained staff for any medical emergencies, and they are trained to remove venomous snakes.
Emergency crews treated the child, who is recovering at a hospital in Asheboro. The child’s condition is still unknown.
The zoo sits on 500 developed acres in Asheboro surrounded by wilderness filled with native wildlife.
It is not uncommon to see snakes while you walk inside the zoo.
Angela Jones came to visit the zoo and saw a snake.
“I just keep them in front of me. I look ahead just to make sure we don’t cross any paths. We’ve seen snakes before. We just have to watch where we step,” Jones said.
Zoo staff members urge parents to be aware of the wildlife environment, especially when you have children playing.
“Be mindful … look under small places, even in your shoes. Baby snakes can be in your shoes. They can be anywhere,” Jones said.
There are several warning signs about venomous snakes located throughout the zoo.
The signs tell you what to do when you see a native snake in the area and urge you to keep your distance.
It is unknown at this time when the Kidzone will reopen.
Officials with the North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission are urging North Carolinians to report certain types of snakes now that the weather is warming up, and snakes are becoming more active.
Wildlife diversity biologists with the NCWRC request that if you see a snake, do not be alarmed, do not kill it and give it plenty of room.