1: Learn to differentiate between watersnakes and cottonmouths with these seven crucial clues.

2: Size matters: cottonmouths are typically larger and thicker than watersnakes.

3: Check the head shape: cottonmouths have distinctive triangular heads while watersnakes have more rounded heads.

4: Consider the eye shape: cottonmouths have vertical pupils, a key distinguishing feature from watersnakes.

5: Color and pattern vary: cottonmouths have dark bands on their bodies, while watersnakes have more uniform coloring.

6: Watch for behavior: cottonmouths are known for their aggressive nature, while watersnakes are generally non-threatening.

7: Habitat preferences differ: cottonmouths prefer wetland areas, while watersnakes can be found in a variety of habitats.

8: Swimming behavior can also offer clues: cottonmouths move with their heads above water, while watersnakes swim with their bodies above the surface.

9: By paying attention to these distinct characteristics, you can confidently identify whether you're dealing with a watersnake or a cottonmouth.