Controlling Snake Problems Around Homes
Remove what attracts snakes. The most effective and lasting way to discourage snakes around
a home, such as in the yard and garden, is to make the area unattractive to them. You can do this
by removing their survival needs, especially shelter or hiding places.
During warm months, when snakes are active and when most people see them, they are attracted
to cool, damp shelter. Remove cover such as boards lying on the ground, rock piles, and weedy
growth near buildings. Check around cement walks or porches for cracks or holes that might
provide an entrance to snakes for shelter. Repair or close these access points so they can't be
If you have a woodpile for a fireplace or stove, make the stack away from the house. Wood can
be moved near the house as needed during colder months, when snakes aren't active. Building a
rack to hold the wood pile at least 12 inches above the ground also will discourage snakes
because the wood (shelter) is separated from the cool, moist soil.
Check the base of storage sheds to see if snakes might crawl beneath for cover. If so, close off
access beneath the shed with packed soil or building materials such as metal or 1/4-inch or
smaller hardware clothe. To form a tight barrier against snakes, building materials should be
buried about six inches under the soil. Although some snakes can push through loose soil, they
can't dig or go through hard soil because they have no digging adaptations such as legs or claws.
Snakes will use holes made by mice or other rodents, so controlling these rodents may be needed
in some situations. Often, removing snake shelter and hiding spots also removes the habitat of
insects and rodents that are snake foods, further reducing the attractiveness of the area to
It's also a good idea to check around the house foundation for cracks or openings where a snake
or other unwanted guests (such as mice) might enter. Close all openings larger than 1/4 inch and
caulk any gaps where surface wir