Today’s Solutions: September 28, 2023

Snakes—whether you’re fascinated or afraid of them, the fact of the matter is that at some point, a few of them will probably find their way into your yard.

There are plenty of different kinds of snakes. Some are harmless and actually help out their hosts by providing free pest control, while others are venomous and, even if you think they’re absolutely cool, you probably don’t want them slithering around (or into) your home. If you’ve noticed more snakes in your yard lately, then here’s a list of common reasons why they’re making an appearance, as well as some suggestions for keeping the harmful ones out.

Find out what type of snake(s) you’re dealing with

Snakes are quick on their bellies, so they can be difficult to identify. If you can take a photo at a safe distance, then do so and contact your state wildlife agency. They’ll be able to help you figure out what kind of snake it is and guide you on the best next steps. What you shouldn’t do is get very close to it or attempt to pick it up.

Why snakes are attracted to your yard

Snakes, like other animals, are probably out there looking for something yummy to eat or a place to shelter. Some of their favorite foods are:

  • Rats
  • Mice
  • Moles
  • Fish
  • Frogs
  • Small farm animals
  • Slugs
  • Snails
  • Grasshoppers

If you notice any of these critters frequenting your property, then they’re probably what’s bringing all the snakes to your yard. In terms of shelter, snakes are attracted to:

  • Thick brush
  • Dense piles of compost or leaves
  • Areas of water
  • Broken gutters
  • Firewood containers
How to keep potentially harmful snakes away from your yard

If your local wildlife agency confirms that the snake you are dealing with is in fact dangerous, then here are some ways you can prevent them from slithering onto your property, according to ThisOldHouse:

Stop providing them with shelter

Remove or block any potential hiding places, such as piled hoses, open areas under sheds, storage areas, and any of the things listed above.

Get rid of areas with standing water

Some snakes like to make their nests near standing water, so make sure to clear up any spots on your property that may have poor drainage. You’ll have to be meticulous as not all these areas of standing water are obvious, like near coiled hoses in your garden.

Feed your pets inside

If you have pets, then make sure they eat indoors. If they like to sit in the yard with you while they eat, then be diligent about putting any food that’s left behind directly indoors. Otherwise, pet food will attract rodents and insects, which become the perfect snacks for snakes.

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