Humans weren't the only ones who evacuated as Hurricane Florence inundated parts of the Carolinas with rain.

Critters and pests also sought dry ground.

Florence largely skirted the Lowcountry and instead hammered the Pee Dee region and eastern North Carolina with heavy winds and massive rainfall. But the tri-county area, like those areas, still could see some displaced creepy crawlers.

Wildlife and medical officials caution to watch out particularly for snakes and fire ants.

"You may come up on some unexpected critters," said David Jenkins, the forest health program coordinator and entomologist for the South Carolina Forestry Commission. “Be aware that a lot of animals may be displaced."

Jenkins, who has weathered several South Carolina storms, including its historic 2015 floods, hasn't heard much about larger animals, such as deer and coyote, being displaced by heavy rain, but he often fields calls from Charleston area residents who find snakes crawling through their yards.

It's common for certain animals, like snakes, to seek higher and drier land during floods. Fire ants also do this, except they're made to ride the waves. The ants can congregate into mass communities and float atop waters until they settle on dry ground near sidewalks, pastures, yards and other disturbed habitats.

It's not uncommon for lawns that didn't have anthills before a storm to have several afterward. And that can pose a danger to both humans and pets.

Dr. Kristin Welch, chief of emergency medicine at the Charleston Veterinary Referral Center, said the facility saw four pets who suffered snake bites since Saturday.

"The snakes are definitely being displaced into people's yards, onto the sidewalks," Welch said.

Welch advised residents to trim their grass or at least walk around their yard before letting dogs out to play. If a pet or human suffers a snake bite, they should seek emergency care as soon as possible.

The good news? The danger will ease up.

"They’re not going to stick around very long," Jenkins said. "They should be gone when the floods recede.”

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