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Snake that attacked SC man in kayak didn't fall from a tree. He picked it up, family says

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The family of the South Carolina man who was bitten by a rattlesnake while kayaking has admitted that their original story was not accurate.

What remains a fact is that Michael Adams was in his kayak on the Edisto River in Colleton County Sunday when he was bitten by a rattlesnake multiple times.

It is also a fact that the Anderson man was rushed from a boat landing to an area hospital, where he was treated before being flown to a Charleston hospital, where he remains a patient.

It is the story of how the 28-year-old Army vet was bitten by the venomous snake that his family has admitted was not true.

Helpful tips to avoid a surprise encounter with a rattlesnake and what to do if you're bit, from Scott Smith, who teaches about reptiles and amphibians. Know when they're active and how they judge danger.

Adams' family members originally told Colleton County Fire and Rescue emergency responders that the rattlesnake had fallen out of a tree into the kayak and bit Adams on the hand.

On Tuesday, family members said Adams actually picked up the snake with his bare hands, foxcarolina.com reported.

Adams's cousin, Kyle Colquitt, said Adams paddled over to what he thought was an alligator in the water, but when he discovered it was a snake he yanked it into the air, according to abcnews4.com.

That is when the 18- to 36-inch long rattler bit Adams — three times.

The rest of the initial report the family told to Colleton County Fire and Rescue matches what they revealed Tuesday.

They also said that Adams remained calm after being bitten and kept the snake to help doctors know which antivenin he would need for treatment, abcnews4.com reported.

After emergency responders picked up Adams at the boat landing, he was rushed to Colleton Medical Center where antivenin was waiting, Colleton County Fire Chief Barry McRoy said Monday.

Sam Corlis caught this huge snake, a canebrake or timber rattlesnake, on the northern tip of Ocracoke Island as it headed out in the NC surf.

While McRoy praised the work done in the ER, he said Adams was in critical condition when he was flown by helicopter to Medical University of South Carolina in Charleston Monday morning.

McRoy said Adams "was in bad shape," and his ailments included lots of swelling and airway problems.

A foxcarolina.com report said Adams was on breathing machines at MUSC.

The Charleston hospital's public affairs and media relations spokesman provided an update on Adam, and it was positive.

Adams is listed in "good condition," MUSC spokesman Tony Ciuffo told The State. Ciuffo defined "good condition as vital signs are stable and within normal limits, the patient is conscious and comfortable, and the indicators are excellent."

Ciuffo spoke with Adams Tuesday, and Adams said he does not want to talk to the media about the incident and does not want the attention.

According to the SC Department of Natural resources, there are 38 types of snakes in the state, only six of which are venomous. Of those six, there are only two that are considered abundant to common - the cottonmouth and copperhead. Here are ways

This was the first reported rattlesnake bite in Colleton County this year, McRoy said. He said there have been a number of copperhead snake bites reported, but typically in those cases the patients have been treated and released from hospitals.

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