With over 3000 species of snake spread throughout the world, the chances of coming into contact with a snake during our lives are pretty good. For those people who live in tropical, rural, highly vegetated areas; the chances are even greater. And if you happen to live in the beautiful Land Down Under; it’s almost a guarantee.
The vast majority of people hate even the thought of seeing a snake, let alone coming into contact with one. For most of us the sight of a snake is normally accompanied by a lot of shouting and a lot of running. That’s not to say snakes don’t have their place in this world and aren’t an important and valuable part of the ecosystem, just as long as that place is far, far away from our homes and families.
Accepting the fact that snakes are around and there really isn’t much we can do about it, the question becomes, “how do we keep them away from us?”. Well, just like with mosquitoes, cockroaches, and other unwanted pests, humans have developed some good strategies and products to help maintain a snake-free home.
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WHAT METHODS WORK?
- Keep your house closed and ensure there are no holes in windows, walls, floors or roofs. Snakes have an uncanny ability to fit themselves into the most unlikely of places. They can squeeze under door frames, through tiny holes in window fly-screens and up between floor boards. If there aren’t any open areas at your house than it is virtually impossible for a snake to enter the house.
- Have an open yard by removing excess leaf litter and fallen branches. Prune overgrown shrubs and plants. Keep the grass mowed and the edges trimmed. Remember, snakes love places they can hide and feel safe. If your yard is nice and clean and open, the places a snake may hide are limited.
- Get a Solar powered Snake Repeller. Put some snake repellers around the yard to deter snakes from coming near your place. These great little devices have been created with the sole purpose of ridding your property of snakes. The way they work is by emitting a sound vibration into the ground that imitates the same noise large animals would make walking around the area. This noise frightens those scary serpents away. Being solar powered, they re-charge their own batteries and work without you having to do a thing! Our unique repellers are definitely a must when it comes to snake deterrence.
- Learn about snakes in your area. Knowing what you may come up against is important when deciding how to keep snakes away. Certain snakes will only be found in certain areas and not all of these will be dangerous. Contact your local wildlife/parks ranger for more info.
For example; in Australia you may need to worry about the dreaded brown snake or you may only have the harmless tree-snakes hanging around. Understanding the behaviour of the snakes common to your area is key in knowing how to get rid of them. Know thy enemy!
- Remove sources of food and water. Sources of water such as non-flowing gullies or streams, large puddles, small dams, etc have been found to attract snakes. This is because of 2 reasons:
- Most land snakes can swim. Yes it’s true, the majority of land snakes not only can swim but enjoy it. This is a little known fact but it is one that could save your life next time you are around water.
- Snakes hunt near water. Water sources attract a large number of animals such as birds, rodents, frogs, lizards, etc. This wildlife creates a smorgasbord for a hungry snake.
This brings us to the next point of removing food sources. Ensure you don’t have a problem with rodents and other vermin around your home. Even ground dwelling or ground nesting birds are high on a snakes diet.
Remember, if you remove the food, you remove the snake.
WHAT IF THERE’S A SNAKE LIVING IN MY YARD?
Some snakes are territorial and will stay around one area if they decide to make it their home. A snake living in your property is a very dangerous and serious matter. Although snakes aren’t confrontational by nature and would rather flee than fight when scared, they can become quite aggressive under the following circumstances:
- Mating season – When snakes come out in Spring and get ready to mate, their behaviour is more erratic and aggressive
- Nesting – A snake will often defend the area around their nest, especially if they’ve laid eggs. If a snake has made a nest in your garden you should contact a wildlife handler immediately.
At times like this, some kind of snake deterring device may not be enough to scare them off. Catching and removing the snake or some some kind of barrier could be one of your last options. Now this doesn’t mean you have to get your Steve Irwin on and pick up every snake you see. There is a much safer and much surer option and it’s called the snake trap. These traps allow you to safely catch and remove snakes without harming yourself or the reptile.
It is an offence to kill snakes in Australia, so if one is living in your yard you should follow the above steps to make it feel unwelcome. If it still doesn’t leave you should contact a professional snake handler. Don’t try it yourself. It really isn’t worth the risk of a bite from a venomous snake. Call the experts and let them deal with it.