Snakes - what on earth do i do?

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by Cara, Jul 24, 2008.

  1. Cara

    Cara Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 30, 2007
    NM
    We are cursed with snakes it seems, wherever we live. At our old house, a few hundred yards away, I had three dogs get bitten by a rattlesnake, two in one night in our yard. We shot 3 Diamondbacks on our front porch that week. That house was one of the 'snakier' ones on the ranch by reputation. We just moved into my FILs old house. He had lived here 30+ years and only killed two rattlesnakes in the yard in that time. Yesterday our 10 week old puppy got bitten by one lurking the other side of the doggy door. Tonight I went out to feed one of my roosters who is in a coop by himself, and a 3-4' Diamondback was in the coop with him.

    My husband thinks it's my birds bringing the snakes in, but I don't have any close to the yard and have coops with far more birds in (and one with rabbits) and have never had a snake in those. It just doesn't make sense as the rabbit coop and largest chicken coop is at our old house, the snakey one, with nobody living there now.

    I got rid of the doghouses that the snake was hiding behind yesterday. Our yard doesn't have much grass and no tall weeds. Two sides of it are surrounded by a wide gravel area which i'd think would help keep them away.

    I guess i'm just desperate now, i've done everything I can for my dogs to keep them safe and it still keeps happening. They are snake-proofed, and will get the rattlesnake vaccine as soon as we can get hold of it. Nobody else around here has had a dog bitten recently, we've had 4 in less than a year.

    Are we just horribly unlucky, or are we unwittingly attracting them somehow? I really don't think I can take any more [​IMG] We have all of this space but can't take advantage of it because we're constantly having to look for rattlesnakes. Does anyone have any tips that really work?
     
  2. XL506

    XL506 Out Of The Brooder

    93
    1
    41
    Jul 23, 2008
    Ohio
    Ive been dealing with snakes for YEARS. Raising and breeding them, and Ive found if you put mothballs around the coop it will make them shy away
     
  3. michigan chick

    michigan chick Out Of The Brooder

    53
    0
    29
    Jun 24, 2008
    Sparta MI
    I found this spray, my neighbors hate snakes even plastic ones she can not stand snakes. So told her about it. She has tried it and has not seen a snake since. She had a problem around a rockier place. I found it in the garden area with all the other repellents. Hope something works. Have all your dogs lived threw the bites?
     
  4. Cara

    Cara Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 30, 2007
    NM
    So far they have; the puppy that got bitten yesterday is still at the vet's. I thought she wasn't going to make it because she was limp and seemed disoriented, but if she's made it this far she should recover.

    The rattlesnakes in our particular area have a toxin in their venom that rots flesh, which is the biggest problem we have when they get bitten. It causes a great deal of tissue damage and takes a long time to heal, and leaves them with pretty bad scars. Other than the puppy are dogs are all quite large, so they feel dreadful for a couple of weeks then recover. I fear them taking a bite to the chest or a vein though; our last dog that got bitten (back in May) narrowly avoided a fang to the eye [​IMG]
     
  5. Southerngirl

    Southerngirl Chillin' With My Peeps

    763
    6
    151
    Mar 25, 2008
    Central Arkansas
    I have also heard of mothballs and it works too. Spread them around your coop and this should help! Good luck!
     
  6. MandyH

    MandyH You'll shoot your eye out!

    Snakes, like all predators, will come to an easy meal. A caged bird or rabbit is just that. I am not scared of snakes, but I think that might even wear on MY nerves after a while. Too many snakes, too close by. My cousins had a snake in the toilet one morning when they went to pee, they figured it came in through the septic line. Now THAT might scare me a little LOL!!!
     
  7. utahmethodist

    utahmethodist Chillin' With My Peeps

    125
    2
    131
    Mar 7, 2008
    SLC, UT
    I don't know if the snakes are being attracted by your birds and rabbits since they are probably too large to be considered prey. But rabbit, chicken, and dog food will definitely attract rodents which will definitely attract snakes. Make sure that you keep all pet food in secure containers and not sitting out where rats and mice will be attracted.
     
  8. ILoveJoe

    ILoveJoe Chillin' With My Peeps

    457
    5
    131
    Jun 28, 2008
    Northern Kentucky
    Was that your new Black Mouth Cur that was bitten?! I hope it is okay. We don't have a huge snake problem and certainly no rattlers in this part of Kentucky.

    Maybe you can befriend some religious group that handles snakes and they can come get all they want and cut down on the snake population.[​IMG] Kidding.

    But seriously I would contact the local Co-operative Extension for your area and see if there aren't any tried and true methods of dealing with them. You can't be the only ones with this problem. I hope. Good Luck.
     
  9. Parson's Wife

    Parson's Wife Blessed Abundantly

    Jan 22, 2008
    Arkansas
    They are there for the food, and if your homesite was 'unactive' for awhile, they may have made nest 'homes'....do you see many mice or rats?
    Use several things to combat them .....and I say this as I'm battling with water moc.'s! But can't really be helped....the parsonage is next to a swamp [​IMG]
    the mothball idea does work, buy some bags of sulphur, also kill out any rodent populations...give them no food, and clear out all you see. Any piles of lumber or things of that nature invite these creatures. Hope someone else has a great idea to get rid of them...I don't like snakes AT ALL....but you might also consider bringing in a coupla king snakes.
     
  10. will the chickens eat the moth balls?i know some one else told me to spread moth balls but i was afraid the chickens would eat them and die.They seem to eat everything else when they are free ranging.
     

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by