Snakes don’t have the best reputation in the animal kingdom, and for various reasons. Most people have a fight or flight response when interacting with snakes, and we understand why. These slithering creatures are not the friendliest. Some are venomous, while others can squeeze the breath out of you.
If you’re among the group that fears these creatures, you should know that you’re not alone. Research shows that humans’ fear of snakes dates back to early man. Fearing snakes was an evolutionary adaptation that humans developed to ensure survival and continuity.
Anthropologists even attribute the need to notice snakes in the wild to improve the vision of primates and enlarge their brains.
Research shows that most snake species will only attack in self-defense. You will often be advised to remain calm when you come across a snake. It is, however, still important to have the upper hand if you interact with these creatures.
Most people will feel defenseless around snakes. It’s, therefore, essential to have techniques that you can use as weapons against snakes. Here’s a list we’ve compiled for you. We hope you can find a couple that you can use I need be.
What attracts snakes to your homestead?
Birds and Rodents
Most snakes can go for long periods without feeding or having a large meal. However, they prefer to feed on small birds and rodents. Besides birds and mice, snakes are also attracted to lizards, frogs, and eggs.
If these small animals frequent your property, there’s a high probability that snakes will too.
Although it might be hard to know if you have rodents around, you can look around your property and get rid of them. Mice, for example, will make their homes in empty spaces and fields and woodpiles. They might also dig burrows under the ground to hide from predators.
Tall Grass and Plants
Most snakes spend a lot of time on the ground. They, however, prefer to seek shelter in tall grass and plants where they can camouflage and stay away from predators, hunt, and rest as well. Leaf piles also provide the perfect place for snakes to hide as they cool off the hot sun.
Cool Places and Shade
Snakes are cold-blooded creatures. This means that their body temperature quickly changes with their environment. As such, they are out in the scorching sun can raise their temperature and warrant the need to find shade where they can cool off.
It is easy to find snakes hiding in bushes, the shed, garage, and woodpiles on your property. These places shelter them and give them a place to rest as they hide from predators or wait for food.
When you have dogs or cats, you might be tempted to leave their food out for long periods. After all, this is an easy way to ensure that they feed as they should. You might not know that this can attract snakes to your property.
Snakes aren’t necessary after your pet’s food, but rodents are. Rodents love the smell and taste of pet food, and they will frequent your property if there’s pet food available.
You can also attract rodents and invite snakes to your property through bird food.
Many snake species love spending time in water and thrive in wet environments. Any puddles that form on your lawn or yard after it rains or after you water your grass might attract snakes.
Small water bodies not only help them to cool off but also help them to stay hydrated. Yes, snakes, just like any other living organism, need water to survive.
Besides providing a place to cool off and hydrate, water bodies such as water baths for birds and fish ponds provide snakes with food.
Different techniques that can be used as weapons
Although sometimes it’s necessary, you don’t have to kill a snake to get rid of it. You can use specific techniques and tools as weapons to chase them away and keep them at bay. These include particular home remedies, natural products, and snake guns.
Get rid of any food supply.
We’re not talking about your food but any potential food for snakes. This mainly includes rodents, birds, amphibians, and fish. Eliminating any potential food supply for snakes will starve them every time they come to your property. This will force them to move on and look for food elsewhere.
Ensure that you avoid leaving pet food outside, clean up any food crumbs left after your pets feed, and avoid storing pet food outside. This way, rodents will not visit your home and attract snakes.
You can also hire a professional exterminator to get rid of rodents. Additionally, you can also set traps, get rid of hiding spots such as woodpiles, and cover up any holes and caves where they may be hiding.
Remember that snakes also love eggs. Ensure that you permanently close your chicken and another poultry coop to prevent snakes from wandering in.
Eliminating Hiding Places
Carefully inspect all the dark and damp places that may offer conducive environments for snakes to hide. These include woodpiles, large cracks, and crevices in walls, holes, and caves. Snakes don’t like staying out in exposed places. Thus, they will stop frequenting your homestead if they don’t have anywhere conducive to hide.
Therefore, seal any cracks on your walls, frequently cut your lawn, get rid of weeds and trim any bushes and shrubs on your property.
Smoke Them Out
Snakes have a high sense of smell which helps them with hunting prey. You can use this to your advantage. Snakes are sensitive to smoke and can’t stand their smell. Dig a fire pit and set some wood on fire once in a while.
You can increase the smoke effect by adding leaves or embers with moss into the fire.
Take Care of Your Landscaping
Changing the landscape on your property is one sure way of managing snakes from your property. You can change your fencing and make it snake-proof by installing plastic sheeting or steel mesh.
You can also add objects to your landscape that make it hard for snakes to slither. These include gravel, pine cones, and holly leaves.
You can also fill any foundational gaps and lawn holes that can fill up with water and form pools and puddles that attract snakes. Make sure also to raise birdbaths and keep snakes from fish ponds by fencing the area and trimming grass around the area.
As much as snakes are intimidating creatures, they’re not on top of the food chain. Some animals prey on snakes, and you can use them to your advantage. We’re not necessarily saying you bring other wild animals into your homestead.
You can use farm animals that are easily accessible and safe to have around. These include cats, turkeys, pigs, and guinea hens.
You can also use animal by-products, such as fox urine, as natural snake repellants.
Benefits of Home remedies.
Using home remedies as weapons have several advantages such as:
You won’t have to break the bank or part with an arm or a leg when using home remedies to get rid of snakes. Most of the home remedies you can use to keep snakes away are cheap, and most people can afford them.
You will also not have to travel the ends of the earth to find these home remedies. Other weapons against snakes, such as snake guns, require you to have licenses, and you can only find them in particular outlets.
Home remedies are also safe and non-toxic.
- Ease and Versatility of use
You don’t have to read a manual or go or train to use home remedies as weapons against these creatures. However, you might have to read some instructions to implement them, but that’s about it. You also don’t have to use home remedies at home necessarily. Some of these techniques apply even when you are outdoors.
For example, you can keep snakes away by keeping your campsite clean. Remember leaving food around your campsite will attract rodents, lizards, and other small animals that they prey on. You can also use your campfire to smoke snakes away.
As mentioned before, snakes are sensitive to smell, and you can use this to your advantage. Other than smoke, several different smells can repel these creatures. These include:
Ammonia: Snakes hate the pungent smell of ammonia. Therefore, soaking rugs in ammonia and placing them strategically in unsealed bags in your surroundings will keep snakes at bay. You can also spray ammonia around places you suspect snakes might be hiding.
Vinegar: Snakes hate the smell and taste of vinegar. You can, therefore, keep them from frequenting your home by spraying and adding white vinegar into any unnecessary body of water. This way, they will smell and taste the vinegar in the water.
Sulfur: The smell of sulfur is pungent to humans and snakes. Therefore, consider scattering sulfur powder around your property. The sulfur powder will also irritate the snake’s skin and eyes and keep them at bay. Be careful, however, when handling sulfur powder, as it may also irritate your nose, eyes, and skin.
Naphthalene: Most snake repellants have naphthalene as a critical component. Other than in snake repellants, you can also find naphthalene in mothballs. You can also try using mothballs to repel snakes from your compound. Please place them in cracks or any other place these creatures might be hiding.
However, be cautious when using mothballs as they are toxic and fatal when ingested by pets or children.
You can also try using lime, cinnamon and clove oil, onions, and garlic.
Using Snake Guns
Snake guns are another alternative to getting rid of snakes. These days, there are firearms specially designed to shoot and kill snakes. Such firearms include the Taurus Judge and the Bond Arms Snake Slayer.
Although using snake guns can be effective, this option is best left for people with experience handling firearms. A good aim is essential when shooting at snakes because failing to hit the snake will result in ricochets.
Bullets that ricochet travel back up and might hit something or someone you did not intend to shoot.
Having guns around can also be risky, especially if you have children around. Therefore, only consider this option if you have experience with using guns, have no children around, or only if you can effectively hide the weapon.
Calling Snake Control Experts
There’s no shame in asking for help, especially if it regards snakes. Therefore, you can reach out to animal control experts to help you manage your snake problem when all else has failed.
If you’re having a snake problem, you should consider this option as these experts are specially trained to handle snakes without necessarily having to kill them. They have the skills and tools to capture snakes that you may lack.
Often, these experts will release the snakes back into the wild or relocate them to a safe place.
It would help if you also considered this option as it guarantees your safety and that of the snake. As much as snakes are not the most endearing creatures, they play an essential role in the ecosystem. They take up a significant part of middle-order consumers and help balance the ecosystem.
It is, therefore, essential to find ways of protecting them and ensuring their safety.
Snakes are part of the ecosystem on earth, and you might interact with them once in a while. Most of the time, these interactions will be harmless, but there is no guarantee this will be the case all the time. Remember, prevention is better than cure. As such, you stand a better chance of protecting yourself from snakes by keeping them away than trying to fight them off.