SNAKE ACTIVITY EXCLUSION AND PREVENTION
South Africa is home to a large variety of snakes ranging from the harmless garden snake to some that are deadly but rarely found in suburban homes and environments.
However, should a snake find its way into a factory, onto your property or even in your home, the chances are that you would in all probability not have a clue how to remove it safely and without doing any harm to the snake and in turn the snake not hurting you.
Our Mostert Pest Control team of professionals will be able to assist in removing snakes safely on your behalf, although not all Mostert branches have the expertise, so be sure to find a branch that is well-versed in offering the service of snake removal.
Additionally, we apply repellent at all entry points where snakes could enter buildings.
Snakes are usually found during warmer weather and are more active as the seasons begin to change. Should you should spot a snake in a garden, chances are that it is only passing through. The two tell-tale signs you might have snakes would be the skin they shed which occurs soon after they emerge from their hibernation spot and the trails in the sand, they leave which is usually a winding trail left behind on sandy or dusty surfaces. Snakes are not aggressive by nature, and most are found in are usually quite harmless.
There are, however, some snakes that are extremely dangerous and if provoked they will strike. Here is a list of snakes you should take note of and which are dangerous to humans and animals:
- The Cape Cobra, Green Mamba and Snouted Cobra all emit neurotoxic venom (this venom attacks the central nervous system and affects cardiopulmonary actions)
- Adders – Puff Adders, Gaboon Adders and Black Adders emit cytotoxic venom (the kind that destroys tissue). Adders are rare, are not usually found in urban environments and bites are usually caused when snakes are provoked or are handled
- The Night Adder is less venomous than the above adders, although a little less toxic
- Boomslang and Vine Snakes are hemotoxic (these disable the clotting mechanisms which causes internal and external bleeding. There is no anti-venom for snakebites from the Vine Snake
Prevention is always better than cure. The very first step to take is towards keeping your property snake-free is to ensure your surroundings are rodent-free. Rodents are a natural food source for snakes, and by keeping the outside of your yard free of any debris, garden refuse and building materials is perhaps a smart move to avoid any nasty surprises. Don’t be shy to radically cut back plants, trees, bushes and any type of thick vegetation around building structures. Ensure the yard is clear of any type of building rubble, old cars, tyres, bricks and stones – in other words, anywhere that snakes would hide away, and be sure to remove any places where rats would feed or hide.
Snakes love to hide amongst sheets of corrugated tin and asbestos and are especially fond of both mice and frogs. Water features are especially attractive to frogs and in turn, snakes.
By applying the below pointers and tips, you will prevent snakes from entering your premises:
The presence of snakes will all depend on where you are located, the landscape that surrounds your property, water sources, and the design and layout of your garden.
- By keeping your lawn and grass around your property short will be a deterrent against snakes hiding in long grass – this is because short grass does not hide snakes against any predators. Additionally, keeping shrubs and trees trimmed if they are up against the outside walls is a good idea to keep snakes and rodents in check
- Keeping your birdbaths, feeders and birdseed far from your residence is advisable as mice and rats are attracted to seed and other food that has been dropped by birds when they feed – rodents, in turn, attract snakes
- Never leave your pet food outside, and if you do feed your furry friends outside, remember to pick up the food when your pets have finished eating. This will prevent attracting rats and mice, as well as insects, and hence snakes to your property
- Seal windows and doors properly as well as any cracks and holes where snakes could crawl into. This should be done during the dormant winter months and will keep snakes away during the warmer summer months
- Avoid using mulches and large rockery stones in the garden as these are ideal hiding places for snakes
- Keeping rats and mice away from outside buildings will prevent snakes from seeking out these tasty morsels. Remove all foodstuffs that mice could be tempted to feed on, and keep all animal feed in containers that have been properly sealed
- Keep your garden clean and clear away any woodpiles, leaves, and other debris that could attract mice and rats and in turn, snakes
- Use shade-cloth and other barriers to prevent snakes from getting into your yard – this needs to go all the way to the bottom of any existing fences and should be buried into the earth where the fence and ground meet (this should be at least 30cm below the ground). Any ordinary boundary fence can easily be snake-proofed, but remember to apply the same preventative measures to gates
- Snakes have a habit of travelling along boundaries and not over them – when they find a gap they will go through these. Ensure you block all holes and gaps in walls and fences that surround your property
- Trying to rid your property of snakes by applying home remedies is a largely ineffective method
Mostert Pest Control will effectively remove snakes when they make their appearance to ensure you, your family, pets and property are kept from harm, and never try to get rid of snakes yourself unless you have been trained and know what you are doing.