How To Keep Snakes Away

If you would like to rid your property of snakes, you may be interested in some tips for getting rid of them. The easiest way is to keep your home and yard in such a manner that the snake is uninterested in taking up residence.

Outdoor Prevention
One key factor in keeping your property snake-free is to keep it clean. Snakes like to hide in tall grass or weeds, woodpiles, or other cool places, such as piles of brick, rock, or scrap lumber. Places like these harbor insects and rodents that snakes eat. Keep your yard mowed and raked. Dispose of yard debris, like piles of leaves, immediately and properly.

Seal up all holes, cracks or crevices in your home, garage, and outbuildings. Check places where pipes or wiring enter the house. There can be a gap around the pipes big enough for a snake to slither through and into your home.

There is some controversy about the use of repellents as to whether or not they work, and whether or not their ingredients are safe to use. Because of this, it is best to rely on other methods.

Moth Balls
This is one highly disputed snake repellent. The naphthalene in the mothballs is the chemical that is said to repel snakes as it irritates their chemical receptors. Keep children and pets away from the mothballs, as they are hazardous.

Repellent Sprays, Liquids, And Powders
These preparations are all used differently and special precautions must be taken while using them. Sprays are often the most used of these choices. The majority of them contain naphthalene, which is harmful to people and animals. Some repellents are sulfur-based and safer to use, but debatable as to effectiveness.

Some people try fabric or mesh fences. Some say these will work, some say they won't. It may depend on how tightly you stretch the fabric and how well it's fastened to the ground so snakes can't crawl under it. Whenever you are in doubt, consult a professional.

Trapping A Snake
Trapping is another method for ridding your property of snakes. There are lethal and non-lethal traps. The lethal trap works on the same principle as a mousetrap. A non-lethal or live trap works much the same as any other live animal trap. Bait is placed inside to lure the snake and then a trap door closes behind it. Snakes catch and eat their prey alive. Baiting a trap with a living rodent or other creature that would tempt a snake is very difficult because the bait will generally not stay in the trap area.

Lethal Traps
When the snake approaches a lethal trap and gets its head in the right place, it springs shut on the snake and theoretically kills it. The only problem is that they don't always work like they are supposed to. Instead, the trap may spring shut too far behind the snake's head and only pin it down without killing it. Then you have the problem of trying to kill it while it is thrashing around in fear and pain. This puts you at great risk of being bitten, especially if it's a poisonous snake. If you have a long-handled forked instrument, you can pin down the head of the snake with it, and then use something sharp to decapitate it.

Non-Lethal Traps
There are different types of non-lethal traps to choose from. One is just a box in which is embedded the scent of a rodent, which is supposed to lure the snake inside. When the snake enters the box, you have to be right there to shut the lid. This means getting your hands close enough to close the lid, risking a snakebite. Whether the snake is poisonous or not, a snakebite is something to avoid.

The glue trap has a thin layer of glue along with the scent of a snake's prey. This works a little better, with a somewhat lesser risk of snakebite. However, if you forget about the box, one of two things may happen. Either the glue will break down and loosen its hold on the snake, allowing the snake will escape, or the glue will hold and the snake will starve to death. Snakes are rather intelligent creatures. If they once get away from a trap, they will never go near one again.

If you do catch a snake in a trap, take the trap to a good place where you can let the snake go. To release a snake from the glue trap, pour vegetable oil, or spray pan spray on it to loosen the glue. Then it will be able to free itself and exit the trap without you getting unnecessarily close to the snake and risk getting bitten.

Killing a snake should be the last resort to ridding your property of them. Most snakes are harmless, and they eat destructive, disease-carrying rodents. If you find yourself thinking of killing a snake, hire a professional to try to get rid of the animal first.

Read the How to get rid of snakes page for helpful information and to learn more about How To Keep Snakes Away

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