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Here are some tips on managing bites and stings in the wild.  It’s best to be aware of how not to get bites or stings, but if it happens this may help.


If you suspect you or a member of your posse has been bitten by a snake don’t bother trying to find out whether it’s poisonous or not; it is.  Survivors treat every bite as though they are poisonous; don’t want to take any chances with snakebites. In the event of snake bites there is a timeline of symptoms that affirm whether or not the bite was venomous.  If at 2 hours after the suspected bite the patient begins to sweat, tremor, and feel fatigued it was most likely venomous, you will then have about 10 hours or less to get that person to a hospital.   Just to be safe here are actions to take immediately after any snakebite:

1.  Remove Jewelry

2.  If you have a venom pump then use it to extract the venom from the bite

3.  Slow the circulation from the bite to the heart by tying off the areas above and below

4.  Kill the snake and bring it in to identify the species if possible


If you can’t identify the insect that either bit or stung you it doesn’t really matter.  Generally you must first apply some sort of antihistamine to wound after cleaning it.  Remove stingers by scraping the area with knife.  Continue to apply antihistamines. Keep a close eye on the affected area and if infection occurs then you should apply antibiotics along with the antihistimines.

Bees and Wasps

Immediately get rid of the stinger as not to allow any more venom into the wound.  If the person is allergic it is critical to take action immediately using the appropriate procedures, usally an epinephrine injection.  These should have instructions on them, but check with the owner of the pen as well.  Applying a cool compress of mud will relieve the irritation in other mild cases.


Wash ant bites with soap and water and watch for the symptoms of anaphylaxis as in bee stings.  Treat like a bee sting if this is the case.


Remove the tick by pulling at the base of the body.  If the head remains in the skin then it should be bandaged with antibiotics and treated like an open wound. You could also light a match blow out the flame and touch the tick with the hot match. This will make the tick release it’s bite and come out of your skin.


Black widow bites will cause muscle cramps and sweating.  Its venom is more toxic than the rattlesnake, but since it doesn’t inject as much it is typically non-toxic.  Treat the bite the same as a snake bite.  If symptoms haven’t gone away in 5 days then seek medical attention elsewhere.

Brown Recluse spiders are a little different.  The bite cause necrosis, or dead tissue and will grow.  It will also produce some fever and joint pain much like a flu.  If bitten by a brown recluse be sure to keep the area clean and seek medical attention quickly.  Infection may occur if the wound is not kept clean.


Since mosquitos are vectors for viruses be sure to monitor for any irregular symptoms, but these are typically rare.  Mosquito bites are ANNOYINGLY itchy, but the mistake everyone  makes is the scratch.  Most people don’t know this but if you don’t scratch at all the bite will be gone within half an hour or so.