Running into a rattlesnake can be a frightening and dangerous situation. It’s important that you remember that we are living in rattlesnake territory and with the climbing temperatures, rattlesnakes are found more often in shaded areas. Rattlesnakes are beneficial to the environment and help to control rodent populations; they also will do their best to avoid any confrontation with larger predators, such as humans.
If you come into contact with a rattlesnake on your property, leave it alone and do NOT try to remove the animal yourself.
Here are a few tips for if you ever encounter a rattlesnake:
- Always be alert when walking/hiking in snake territory (shrubbery, tall grass, etc.) and keep any pets you have restrained. Avoid using headphones or other distracting materials that could prevent you from hearing a rattlesnake’s warning rattle.
- If you are unsure of the snake that you have stumbled upon, be cautious; it too could be dangerous.
- Back away from the snake slowly. Increase the space between you and the animal.
- Do not attempt to throw things at it, pick it up, or agitate the snake.
- If you encounter a snake, alert others of its location. Keep people, children, and pets away from that area.
- If you, a child, or a pet is bitten by the snake, try to remain calm and call 911 immediately. DO NOT try to suck out the poison.
- Keeping snakes out of your yard:
- Limit the number of places that could act as a shelter for snakes (brush, rocks, wood piles, junk piles, tall unmanaged grass, etc. Are all examples of common snake habitats).
- Control rodent populations by reducing the number of bird feeders and other food sources that attract rodents and therefore, snakes.
- Avoid scaring away harmless snakes such as blow snakes, gopher snakes, garter snakes, etc. The presence of these non-poisonous snakes can help control rodent populations and also deter the presence of rattlesnakes.