By Sheree Hoddinett
The last place you want to find a snake is in your bedroom or wrapped around your toilet, but it does happen! Would you know what to do if you come across a ‘nope rope’ hanging from your showerhead or curled up in a drawer? Most people would probably run away (myself included!), but there are a few things you can do to help have your new slithering friend relocated and it’s best to call in an expert, rather than attempt it yourself.
With so many different snake species calling Australia home, most of us wouldn’t know at first glance which ones are harmless and those that are extremely deadly, unless you have a trained eye. Steve Brown from Brisbane North Snake Catchers and Relocation said if you come across a snake in close proximity to you, the most important thing to remember was to stand still.
“If you do this, the snake will feel less threatened and not see you as a threat, so it will move on and not feel it has to defend itself,” he said. “If you do see a snake in or around your home, never attempt to catch it or kill it as this may result in your life being turned upside down in the blink of an eye. Always call a professional to catch and relocate a snake. If you are unsure what species it is grab a photo from a safe distance (no closer than 5m) and send the photo to a snake catcher.”
While we can’t keep snakes completely out of our lives, there is a couple of things you can do to make your property a little less tempting.
“Keep your yard clean and maintained – short grass and garden beds clean from foliage,” Steve said. “Try to make your place less inviting to a snake.”
Rhien Talbot is certainly no stranger to snakes and can often be found removing them from spots in and around local homes from Bribie and further afield.
“With the current time of year and weather events happening, there are a few snakes on the move,” Rhien said. “Most are looking for dry ground away from the rain but we are also in the middle of breeding season so we have males out and about in search of mates. This isn't anything new, it happens every year around the same time! So there definitely isn't more snakes around and they aren't getting any bigger!”
Along with keeping your yard tidy, Rhien recommends removing items so snakes don’t have places to hide and also eliminating any potential food sources like mice and rats.
“One of the main reasons snakes will enter a yard is while hunting for food,” Rhien said. “Chicken pens, bird cages and even pet food kept outdoors will attract rodents to your property and snakes can soon follow. If you have outdoor pets it is best to feed them when needed, then clean up and remove food to ensure no rodents come in. Even with these steps you aren't guaranteed to never have a snake in your yard. They are wild animals and will sometimes just pass through.”
If you do spot a snake, Rhien highlights the importance of making sure everyone including pets, is safe.
“If everyone is at a safe distance you can monitor the snake and it should move on in no time,” Rhien said. “If you want to ensure it is moved on, you can call your local snake catcher and keep an eye on the snake until they arrive to relocate it. If a snake is inside your house you should remove everyone from the room and use towels to block the gap under the door. Once that is done, give your local snake catcher a call and monitor the door to ensure it doesn't slip out past the towel. Also, it is important to note that snake catchers are a paid service and we do charge a callout fee.”
**You can reach Steve Brown from Brisbane North Snake Catchers and Relocation 24 hours a day, 7 days a week on 0449 922 341**
**Rhien is contactable via 0478 712 638 or Rhien's Snake Removals on Facebook**