"SNAKE PROOFING" – THE BEST ADVICE I CAN GIVE

INTRODUCTION


I am frequently asked about how to “snake proof” a home. To answer this question, it is important to understand snake behaviour around homes and where I have personally found them when attending emergency snake call outs.

Snake Hunter

SNAKE MOVEMENT


Snakes can remain stationary for extended periods and otherwise can be on the move for (in extreme cases up to 1.5 kilometres in a day). I have personally seen venomous snakes of Melbourne:


AROUND THE HOME, I have found snakes:

  • Climb mortar between bricks on vertical walls

  • Climb on top of roof tops, in gutters and hang from lattices.

  • Crawl into weep holes (gaps left between bricks in external masonry walls that provide ventilation to building materials) and then crawl around internal spaces in the wall.

  • Hide in the gaps between concrete pathways and homes

  • Sit on window sills, underneath front door mats, and climb inside the gap between the front door and the ground.

  • In garages hiding in corners or near tools

  • & Much more.


INSIDE THE HOME, I have found snakes:

  • Underneath refrigerators

  • In the back of dishwashers

  • Underneath master beds in the bedroom

  • Behind desks, TV units & bookshelves

  • Inside kitchen cupboards and the pantry

  • Hiding in children’s toys and toy boxes

  • Hanging from light fittings in the ceiling.

  • And of course sitting on the floor waiting to be found.

  • Much, much more.


IN THE GARDEN, I have found snakes:

  • Underneath scrub or hiding in longer grass

  • Hiding underneath or in between rocks.

  • Around and swimming in swimming pools, ponds or water features

  • Inside kids cubby houses or outhouses.

  • In flower beds, veggie patches, raised garden boxes.

  • Inside garden sheds, chicken coups and outdoor bird cages.

  • Climb trees in search of birds

  • Climbing fences to access a yard

  • Inside of motor vehicles, engine bodies, around wheels

  • Much, much more.

Snake Hunter

HOW DO SNAKES ENTER SOMEONE’S PROPERTY?


Snakes can slither over, under and around fences into anywhere in your garden (front, side or rear). Snakes can crawl up your front driveway and temporarily make your home their own for a designated period of time.


Similarly snakes can enter your home also. At night I frequently catch snakes inside someone’s home and they can enter through:

  • Underneath the front or back door or through open doors.

  • Open windows or gaps in windows especially where wire mesh has holes or cuts,

  • Doggy doors

  • Holes in walls (around pipes or otherwise)

  • Through Weep Holes where there is also holes in the internal framework.

  • Vents, ducts, gaps, holes in flooring (especially where construction work occurs)

  • Being carried inside laundry or shopping bags or otherwise boots or shoes that are carried inside.


WHAT IS SNAKE PROOFING?


"Snake Proofing" means to protect a home and property from a snake so that it will be impenetrable for snakes to enter or otherwise prevent them from accessing your property.


IS SNAKE PROOFING A HOME REAL?


Snake proofing is actually a myth and not possible to be achieved.

You read that line correctly: Snake proofing a home is not possible to be achieved.


THERE IS NO GUARANTEED WAY TO SNAKE PROOF A HOME.


However there remains products on the market available which exploit home owner’s fear of snakes. These products are sold with different levels of guarantees to prevent snakes from entering your home. These include:

  • Snake “proof” fencing

  • Solar snake repellents.

  • Spraying the house with chemicals from a pest controller

  • Other mechanical, electronic devices which “prevent” snakes.

  • Recipes that grandma made in another country that you spray around the home to prevent snakes because they “hate the smell”

  • Purchasing blue tongue lizards to put in the garden to “get rid of snakes”.

  • Purchasing "special" plants that deter snakes.


As Australia’s own SNAKE HUNTER, I have caught snakes on properties on many occasion with all the above products present at the premises.


The home/business owner then will ask me why the “snake proof” products did not work or otherwise point them out to me. On one occasion, the home owner advised they called the manufacturer of the snake repellent to ask why a snake still entered their premises. The manufacturer reportedly responded on the phone: “You obviously need to purchase more”.


I have been advised that Consumer Affairs and the ACCC have been advised about concerns of misleading and deceptive advertising of “snake proof” products.