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Bugs And Weeds

Green Guide To Green Pest Control And Pest Prevention


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Snakes In The House! This is not the plot of a movie!

Most of us cannot imagine a more frightening thought. Even if you have a reptile as a pet, having a few around that you are not aware of, could become, at least slightly unnerving!

I have received 3 calls this month, (that is March 2008,) about this problem, and once last month. I think it is a topic worth saying a little bit about. At least two of the homes should have had recent inspections, which makes me wonder if the nature of pest inspections needs to change!

The rules which apply to other pests, also apply to snakes.

The first thing I want to say about this issue, is that  the same techniques used to prevent other pests from entering your home, are fully applicable here.

Keeping the brush down and distant from your home, keeping debris off your property, keeping the lawn mowed properly and low enough that it provides no cover, properly constructed landscape beds, properly pruned trees, and a properly sealed home, should keep snakes at a distance, and prevent snakes from coming inside to curl up next to you.

Other things mentioned, or at least alluded to on this site, that are particularly applicable to this situation are:

  • If you have fire wood for your fire place, you should get it off the ground. Build or purchase a rack that will keep it 20 inches or so from the earth. This does not eliminate the possibility of a problem, but it should lessen it somewhat. Check the wood before you bring any into the home.

  • Doors that stay open for long periods of time, especially the ones near landscape beds, invite critters to come inside. Close the door like your mother always told you when you were a kid.

  • Garage doors are often left ajar to help dissipate heat. This is a good practice for you, if you are a snake, a rodent, or an insect wanting to get inside. 

Some thoughts on what to do about the snakes already inside.

This is tough, you should find out how they got inside in the first place. Check every entrance into your home. If you see light between your doors and thresholds, you should install new sweeps. Check openings for communications cables, electrical supply, and water supply lines, especially under kitchen sinks and similar places. Seal every opening, even if it is only small.

It might be worth dusting the floor with baby powder, and seeing where the reptiles enter and exit the room, that is, if you have a hard surface flooring.

Of course, you should check under and behind everything in the home.

Rat snakes have been known to lay eggs in insulation in the attic of homes, so a good inspection of the attic would be in order.

A moist towel spread out in a warm, dark corner of a room, will sometimes attract a snake which will crawl underneath. This might help to isolate them.

Glue traps taped together on the back side, might catch some, but I have never liked using glue traps for any kind of creature.

We are trying to put together more information on this subject, and hope to have a more comprehensive list in the near future. In the mean time, is one source with a lot of information on snakes, from a recognized expert in the field.

Some reasons why this is happening:

Despite the real estate "bust" in other parts of the country, the Tyler East Texas area seems to be in the middle of a building "boom." Property which was, until recently, woodland and pasture is becoming  human habitat. With humans encroaching, and disturbing sites which were once dominated by covering flora, and the wildlife it hid, the critters have to go somewhere, and some of them might think that your place looks like a nice place to slither into!

To get started on your very own home pest management program, just see: How To Use This Site,Prevention Starts Outdoors, or our Prevention Program page. Just follow the links at the bottom of each page, for a step by step program. There are many other resources on this site so be sure to take a look at our Main Directory .

If you live in the Tyler, East Texas area, and have a problem with bugs and weeds,  TexPest Services is your source for IPM based pest control.

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