By Montana Grant

Posted: January 19, 2023

Snakes are amazing critters. Many people are just creeped out over a snake, any snake, especially snakes near, or in their space. The sheer mention or thought of a snake will make their skin crawl.

Some folks catch and move snakes away from their areas. Consider moving them a few miles. Black snakes have been tagged and returned to their slithering grounds over shorter distances.

Some folks leave the snakes around. This is fine if the snakes are not poisonous/ venomous/ enormous. The snakes will feed on the mice and rodents in your area. Bull snakes, indigo snakes, and others will eat poisonous snakes, like rattlers. Honestly, removing food sources will motivate snakes to crawl elsewhere. Big snakes will also feast on birds, pets, and small whatever’s. Pick your poison.

Snakes can show up in unusual places. Recently a Black Mamba entered a school in Africa, bit and killed a 17-year-old student. The school was in a more modern city. One of my friends started their truck one morning and heard thumping and banging from the engine. When he opened the hood, he discovered a huge rattlesnake that must have been laying on the engine block to get warm.

To remove snakes, call on Snake Hunters! These crews will search your property, locate food and nesting sites, and remove the snakes. It may take several repetitions, routinely to eradicate the snakes. Removing junk piles and snake habitats is also a good idea.

Some folks just kill snakes, any snakes, all snakes. Their weapon of choice is often a shovel. The long handle allows them to get close but stay a safe distance. A straight edge shovel allows for more cutting area. The goal is to chop off the head. Even with the head removed, snakes still coil and move. The fangs are still loaded. If a pet or person grabs the head, they can still get bitten.

Shooting snakes is also a mortal method. Ricochets are an issue, and the snakes will continue to move after being shot. Keep other critters, pets, away from the not quite dead snakes. Snake loads, for handguns, require you to get closer than you may want. A 410 handgun may be a better choice. The shot wad holds the pattern together over a longer range.

When I purchased a 9mm compact handgun as a carry, I bought some snake loads. The semi auto pistol may not cycle the plastic shot cap consistently and cause a jam. When I tried to hit a can, on the ground, at just a few feet, I missed.

Snakes have no legs. They are long, articulating backbones. If you have to kill a snake and are not afraid to touch it, grab the snake by the tail and snap it! The quick whip/snap will also snap the snake’s neck. It will immediately become limp and dead. If you grab the tail, drag the snake to stretch it out. Logs, rocks, and debris can help you hook or wrap the snake, so you finally whip it good!

Snakes are part of our Ecosystem. Native snakes have a job to do. They also have a predator that naturally keeps their populations under control.

Non-native snakes are not welcome. If you don’t believe me, watch the Serpent Invasion tv show. Giant Pythons have invaded our southern everglades and other wetlands. They feast on any and everything they can, but nothing feasts on them. The only current management tool are snake hunters that receive a Bounty for every snake they capture.

Every ecosystem has a snake that can be a problem. Know what serpent lives in your area. Keep your dog’s snake trained or get them vaccinated inn case they get bitten. Educate all about the risks and what to do if you get bitten.

Rattle, Hiss, Slither!!!

Montana Grant

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