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Snake FAQ


Q. Why did the Creator of Heaven and Earth make snakes, anyway?

Q. Why did the snakes pick my house?

Q. Why do snakes want to live in my attic, walls or crawlspace?

Q. Why do I need to get rid of snakes?

Q. When are snakes a problem?

Q. When do snakes come into houses?

Q. When is the best time to get rid of snakes?

Q. Where do snakes live?

Q. Where do snakes usually enter a building?

Q. How do I know if I have snakes in my attic?
 
Q. Where can I get help with my snake problem?

Health & Safety

Q. What are the health risks of having snakes in my residential or commercial building?

Q. Will the snakes attack me?

Q. How can I tell if it is a venomous snake?

Q. Who is responsible for this snake problem?  

Animal Control Products and Methods

Q. What are the most common snake complaints you receive?

Q. Which poisons do you recommend to kill snakes?

Q. Which snake repellents are the best?

Q. Which methods do you use to exterminate snakes?

Q. Who should I call for help?

Q. Why should I hire a professional to get rid of snakes?

Property Damage

Q. What damage can snakes cause?

Q. What is this going to do to my property value?

Q. What will a wildlife removal technician do about the snakes in my building?

Q. How do snakes get in my building?

Q. How can I get the snakes out?

Q. How can a wildlife removal technician help me get rid of the snakes?

Costs

Q. What does it cost for an initial on-site snake inspection?

Q. What does it cost for an initial over-the-phone snake control consultation?

Q. Who pays for my snake problem?

Q. What FREE snake control services does your company offer to the public?

Q. How much will it cost to get rid of the snakes?

 

General Snake Questions

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Q. Why did the Creator of Heaven and Earth make snakes, anyway?

A. Snakes play a variety of important roles in the ecosystems they inhabit. Most snakes are predators that keep prey populations under control.  Since their prey includes everything from worms to rats to rabbits to other snakes, it is easy to see why they are valuable.

Q. Why did the snakes pick my house?

A. Snakes like your yard and house because there are places to hide and plenty to eat.  Snakes love shrubbery and even thick garden areas because they are good shady hideouts and there is a high possibility of an easy meal, as that shrubbery commonly conceals other animals as well. Most snakes are solitary creatures that like to stay out of sight.  Depending on the season, they are there primarily for food, or primarily for shelter.

Q. Why do snakes want to live in my attic, walls or crawlspace? 

A. Snakes are living in your home or yard because there is attractive habitat and nearby food.  Most often they come into homes to den up for the winter and when they do this it can be in alarmingly large numbers.  A single rattlesnake den, for example, can contain over 70 snakes.  People frequently are not aware the snakes are in the home at all during the winter.  When the nest starts to disperse in the spring, it will suddenly appear that snakes are everywhere!

Some snakes, such as bull snakes, will come into homes specifically looking for food, but this is less common.

Q. Why do I need to get rid of snakes?

A.  An estimated 45,000 people are bitten by snakes annually in the United States.  Approximately 8,000 of these bites are from venomous snakes.  Less than 10 of these bites are fatal each year due to readily available (but very expensive) medical care.  It is estimated that snakebites account for 125,000 deaths worldwide annually.  That is enough reason for most people, but there are other considerations. 

For example, pet safety is a key issue as far more animals than people are bitten and killed by snakes each year.

Snakes smell and the smell is hard to get rid of—whether the animal is dead or alive.
Snakes are usually in an area or structure because there is food there.  If you have a snake problem you probably also have an insect or rodent problem to go along with it.
Snakes carry a variety of diseases, including salmonella, and can make you sick even without biting you.

Q. When are snakes a problem?

A. Snakes are a problem when they occupy human spaces or structures where they are not wanted.  Sometimes their presence is merely creepy and frightening.  Any venomous snake near a house, particularly with children and pets, is a problem.  It poses a real danger to all who are nearby.

Q. When do snakes come into houses?

A. Snakes come into houses for food or shelter.  The house is providing their basic needs and they aren’t going to abandon it without a reason. Sudden changes such as cool weather can bring snakes indoors as their cold blood seeks a warm place—like behind your refrigerator. Snakes will come into houses and find small covered spaces to reside.

Q. When is the best time to get rid of snakes?

A. You should get rid of snakes as soon as you know they are around.  This may be obvious with venomous snakes, but even non-venomous snakes pose a threat and should be evicted before they get used to calling your house their home.

Q. Where do snakes live?

A.  Snakes like cool, dark places where there is plenty of food.  Many snakes prefer places that are dry and firm, rather than damp or soft.  Remember, snakes are not slimy, not matter what people might say, and they generally prefer drier places.  There are exceptions, though, and some snakes actively seek water.

They can live in a variety of situations but many species prefer underground habitats such as rodent runs, caves or holes.  Humans often accidently create perfect snake habitat—wall cavities, crawl spaces and attics make great dens.  Firewood stacks, retaining walls and junk piles are favorites.  Gardens, flower beds and shrubs are also desirable.

It is not uncommon to find multiple types or species of snakes sharing a single den.  When a particularly desirable location is found, it is time to be friendly.

Q. Where do snakes usually enter a building?

A. Snakes usually enter at ground level through gaps or cracks.  These openings can be remarkably small and are created by careless construction, settling of the structure, or by other animals. If you can see daylight through a gap, it is possible that a snake could use that space to access your building.

Once in the home, though, they can travel all over the structure by traveling through frame walls, along pipes or between joists and trusses.

The one consolation should be that it is more common for non-venomous snakes such as garter snakes and bull snakes to actually access the interior of buildings than for venomous snakes such as rattlesnakes.

Q.  How do I know if I have snakes in my attic?

A. You may hear slithering sounds.  You may notice a distinctive odor of reptile.  You might find snake scat (poop) which will often have feathers or bones in it. You could find sheds, or discarded snake skin. Sometimes people actually see the snakes or may hear stories from former owners or neighbors about previous snake problems.  It is common, though, for people to go for some time before they realize they have a snake problem because of the nocturnal behavior and shy habits of these creatures.

Q. Where can I get help with my snake problem?

A. Allstate Snake Control can help you.  No government agency exists for snake removal and control.  Exterminators that do a great job on spiders are frequently unprepared for snakes.  Get a professional wild pest animal removal company like us. 1-888-488-7720.

Health & Safety

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Q. What are the health risks of having snakes in my residential or commercial building?

A. Apart from the danger of bite by a venomous snake, which is significant, snakes carry a number of diseases and parasites.  Salmonella may be the most common but protozoa, tapeworms, and roundworms or even fleas are possible.

Q. Will the snakes attack me?

A. Snakes normally will not attack unprovoked, but they will defend themselves if stepped on, harassed by a cat or dog, or picked up and handled.  Leave snakes alone and they will generally leave you alone.

Q. How can I tell if it is a venomous snake?

A. There are four venomous snake species native to the United States: Rattlesnakes, Coral Snakes, Cotton Mouths, and Copperheads. Most venomous snakes have more triangular heads and slit, rather than rounded, pupils.  However, I don’t really recommend that you spend that much time getting close enough to look that close.  If you aren’t sure from a distance, call for professional help.  The following is some general information and should not be considered the final word on the subject or used to make a decision whether or not to handle an unknown snake:

Rattlesnake species have rattles. They do not generally make a sound like a baby rattle, but sounds more like air escaping from a leaky hose or a buzz. 

Coral snakes are brightly colored with red, yellow, and black. Milk snakes also have red, yellow, and black stripes, but in a different pattern. Some people use this rhyme to tell the difference. "If red touches black, you're OK, Jack. If red touches yellow, you're one dead fellow."

Cottonmouths are a dark blackish gray or olive green, and are found in or near the water. These snakes tend to be VERY aggressive and/or territorial, even to the point of pursuing an intruder.

Copperheads are named for the coppery appearance of their heads, with the rest of their body being a tan to pinkish color with darker hourglass shaped markings running across the body.

If you find a snake, don’t automatically kill it, even if you suspect it is poisonous.  Snakes are really interesting and important animals and can usually be removed without killing them.

Q. Who is responsible for this snake problem?

A.  The changing weather is often responsible, or it could be the easy food source your property provides the snakes. Either way, you are the one who must deal with it.  Government agencies, the police and your local dog catcher don’t do snakes; you will need to engage the services of a wild animal control specialist.

Animal Control Products and Methods

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Q. What are the most common snake complaints you receive?

A. People get very unhappy when they find a snake in their house.  It is also common to get calls from people because of a venomous snake or an unusual number or size of snake on their property.

Q. Which poisons do you recommend to kill snakes?

A. There are no poisons registered for snakes.

Q. Which snake repellents are the best?

A. I do not recommend any of the common snake repellents—sprays, powders and sonic devices.  They don’t work.  The home remedies of mothballs, sulphur, predator urine or ammonia are equally ineffective.  

Q. Which methods do you use to exterminate snakes?

A. We use kill traps and live traps followed by exclusion, preventing the snakes from returning.

Q. Who should I call for help?    

A. Call Allstate Snake Control 1-888-488-7720.  We have helped many people get rid of the snakes inside and outside of buildings.  We are effective and have the experience and expertise you need.

Q. Why should I hire a professional to get rid of snakes?
           
A. Snakes are challenging animals because they can get through such small openings.  Without training, experience, and proper equipment it is nearly impossible to get rid of the snakes, keep them out and clean up the mess they created. Professionals like Allstate Snake Control can help you with the entire process and recommend repairs and modifications necessary to prevent them returning. Don’t just get rid of a few snakes, get rid of all of them and make sure they don’t come back. 

Property Damage

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Q. What damage can snakes cause?

A.  Snakes mostly leave scat, smell and meal remains on property.  Their primary damage is due to bites inflicted on people, pets and livestock.

Q. What is this going to do to my property value?

A. Buildings infested by snakes are very difficult to sell. 

Q. What will a wildlife removal technician do about the snakes in my building?         

A. A technician will determine the extent of your infestation and what species are involved and design a removal plan.  This can include snaring, trapping, or other removal techniques.  The technician will also recommend habitat modification to prevent future infestations. The snakes are on your property for a reason.  Eliminate the clutter, trim back the weeds, and fill in gaps. Get rid of  the food source, frequently rodents. Some repellents may be recommended as appropriate for your individual situation.
 
Q. How do snakes get in my building?

A. Snakes usually don’t climb the outside of buildings.  Some snakes use trees, but most of them enter at or below ground level. That means any spaces or openings around water pipes, electrical outlets, gas or oil pipes, windows and doors must be sealed up. If you have holes in your foundation, they will have to be sealed with mortar.

Q. How can I get the snakes out?

A. You should not attempt to get the snakes out yourself.  You may not have the expertise necessary to identify if the snake is venomous and you should not attempt to handle any snake that has not been indentified.

Unless you evaluate your home and determine all possible access points, the snakes will return.  Snakes can get through amazingly small holes approximately the diameter of a dime.

As long as there is desirable shelter and food, the snakes will return. 
You can get help and make sure the job is done right if you hire a wildlife solution expert like us.  We can perform on-site removal, or try our over-the-phone snake removal coaching service.

Q. How can a wildlife removal technician help me get rid of the snakes?

A. A wildlife removal technician will physically remove the snakes from the area by catching it manually or with a trap.  The technician will also work with you to make sure there are not more snakes present and that your yard, home or other building is protected from future snake infestation.  

We will inspect your property, create a customized removal plan and capture or trap the snakes as necessary.  We will help you locate and seal all access points used by snakes and determine if there is an additional infestation—such as mice or rats. If you have snakes, you will often have additional pests, because many snakes love to eat all kinds of rodents and other small animals. We will clean up the smell and mess, making your building a nicer place to be and helping to prevent future snake infestations.

Costs

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Q. What does it cost for an initial on-site snake inspection?

A. Inspections start at $150-250, depending on your location.  For specific information, see our Snake Removal Pricing.

Q. What does it cost for an initial over-the-phone snake control consultation?

A. FREE!  Send 5-10 pictures via e-mail and we will review them and call you to recommend a solution and give you an estimate.  Pictures should include possible snake entrances, any evidence of snake occupation such as feces/scat or shed skins, damage caused by the snakes, and any related item you think might be important.

Q. Who pays for my snake problem?
  
A. Snake infestations are the responsibility of the property owner. Typically snake removal starts with an inspection and evaluation which costs $150-250, depending on your location.  You may want to contact your property insurance carrier; your policy may include coverage for removal and clean up of pest animals. For specific information, see our Pricing Page.

Q. What FREE snake control services does your company offer to the public?

A. If you find a suspected snake problem on your property, take 5-10 digital pictures and e-mail them to us (use the Contact Us page).  We will call you on the phone and discuss your situation for a few minutes and suggest a plan of action, as time allows.

Q. How much will it cost to get rid of the snakes?

A. Prices vary depending on your location, number of animals and severity of the problem. I can give you a FREE estimate over the phone using digital pictures you e-mail me. For additional information, see our Snake Pricing Page.