Camper bitten by copperhead in state park

A camper in Brown County State Park was bitten by a poisonous snake and had to be taken to the hospital this weekend.

Nan Zhang, 35, of Carmel, and his family were staying at Taylor Ridge Campground when he was bitten the evening of July 16.

The family was walking to the showerhouse in flip-flops when Zhang was bitten on the toe by a copperhead, a press release from the Indiana Department of Natural Resources Law Enforcement District 6 said.

The snake was killed by other campers in the area. Indiana Conservation Officer Brent Bohbrink identified it as a copperhead.

Zhang was taken to Columbus Regional Hospital.

“While copperheads and timber rattlesnakes are present in Brown County State Park, bites to humans are rare,” the DNR release said. “These snakes are present throughout southern Indiana and as long as visitors use the same precautions they would use anywhere else, most snake/human encounters can be avoided.”

Precautions include staying on trails while hiking, looking on the back side of fallen logs before stepping over them, wearing closed-toe and/or sturdy footwear while hiking and using a flashlight while walking in the woods after dark, the release said.

Officers advise people to back away and leave the area if they encounter a snake in the woods.

“These snakes are not aggressive by nature and rarely, if ever, attack a person,” the release said.