Guide to a Snake Free Yard
Basic things you can do to lessen snake encounters on your property
Food Snakes Like to Eat -
Get rid of possible food sources for snakes. A snake on your property is not there because it appreciates the view. Snakes live to eat and eat to live. If there is no food, a snake will soon leave and go to where the food is. Bird feeders attract more than birds. They also attract snakes. The snakes are not there for the seed but rather the birds, squirrels and mice that fallen bird seed attract. Imagine filling a bird feeder full of bird seed in your wooded back yard and not wanting birds to be there. That's crazy isn't it? Leaving food sources in your yard that snakes love and not wanting snakes is kind of crazy too. Feeding birds, squirrels, deer and even pets can contribute to a snake finding your yard suitable. When feeding pets outdoors, only provide an appropriate amount of food for them to eat completely within a few minutes. Left over cat or dog food or food meant for certain wildlife is often carried off by rats and mice when no one's around. Just as a K-9 tracks the scent trail of the perpetrator, a snake tracks the scent trail left by its prey item as it wanders around your yard gathering bits of food. Another thing to consider is night time lighting. Porch lights attract moths. Moths attract frogs and toads and some snakes love frogs and/or toads for dinner. Also, do not leave garbage or any other items lying around for long periods of time that may begin to attract mice and rats.
Places Snakes Like to Hide -
Clean, clean and clean some more. A snake will always look for a place to hide. Snakes are normally not found out in the middle of a clean and open yard, but rather in brush piles, under houses, leaves and other debris. Eliminate areas where snakes may want to hide. Low growing shrubery should be trimmed up off the ground. Plants such as ivy, juniper, monkey grass and other low growing vegetation should only exist in areas you are comfortable with snakes living. Many people use pine straw in their flower beds and around their homes. While pine straw doesn't neccessarily attract snakes, it does afford them an easy pleace to burrow and hide. Instead of pine straw, consider using mulch, bark or rock. These do not repel snakes but, snakes have a tougher time trying to hide underneath it. Storage items can harbor snakes as well. The underside of lawnmowers are favorite haunts but they seem to love the nooks and cranies of fire wood piles even more. Stacking firewood and other items up, off the ground helps tremendously.
Chemical controls. Southeastern Reptile Rescue does not endorse snake repellant or any other chemicals. We do this not because they are harmful to snakes but because we have never found any that actually work. Diet, body temperature and other biological aspects of snakes complicate the potrential for developing such snake controls. In our opinion, anyone who tries to sell you snake repellant either does not know what they're doing or are just trying to take your money. Some retaillers sell snake repellant in their garden sections. If it actually repelled snakes, we would have a link right here for you to buy it from us so we could benefit as well. Jason, of Southeastern Reptile Rescue has personally spoken with the president of a local company who offers snake services and pushes the sale of its expensive snake treatment using snake repellant. Jason was told by this president that he himself does not believe that the repellant actually works and that it is more for the customers peace of mind than anything else. We disagree. We believe it is more for a piece of the customers wallet. If having snake repellant sprinkled around your house allows you to sleep better at night, then buy it. But, we will not sell it to you. After all, people's fear of snakes is psychologically based, I guess the cure should be also. Various home remedies have been sggested for repelling snakes and several have been scientifically tested. Treatments included moth, lime, balls, sulfur, cayenne pepper spray, cinnamon, gourd vines, a tacky bird repellant, sisal rope, coal tar, creseote, artificial skunk scent and musk from a king snake (king snakes eat other snakes). None of these remedies prevented the snakes from crossing them.
So what does all this mean? - We cannot totaly prevent snakes from entering our property but we can lessen the chance of them choosing to stay. Instead of living in fear, we must learn to co-exist with snakes instead of always trying to kill them.
Southeastern Reptile Rescue will come to your residence or business and do a detailed evaluation pinpointing problem areas and identify acttractants that may be in place on your property. Any snakes that we find during this process may be removed. We are also licensed by the State of Georgia for Nuisance Wildlife Removal.