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Getting Rid of Garter Snakes

I have snakes in my basement. I am deathly afraid of snakes. I know they are just garter snakes, but now they have babies. I want to get rid of them, not just repel them, but kill them. I have put down the sticky traps with no results. Do moth balls kill them? Does gravel kill them? Does bleach kill them? I am not able to get around much, I have a heart condition and don't want to end up passed out on the floor in the basement with those creepy crawlers. Any and all suggestions are greatly appreciated.

Thank you,
Miss Liddle from Jamestown North Dakota


Getting Rid of Gardner Snakes

Hi Miss Liddle...

This probably isn't a solution if you only see them once in a while. I live in SD. The kids in our neighborhood like to hunt for snakes. They take them out to the corn field and let them go.

The snakes should be in hibernation now, so you probably won't see them anymore till spring. The only way I know of to kill them is to hit them over the head. I don't think you'd want to do that when you are afraid of them.

By mousie

Getting Rid of Gardner Snakes

If you put down the mothballs while they are not active, they will be driven out of your basement. For some reason this does not work with poison snakes like rattlers, but does get rid of the non-poison type. My sister-in-law had a similar problem and that worked for her (11/09/2005)

By Maureen

Getting Rid of Garter Snakes

Boy, do I understand how you feel! I had a nest of garter snakes in the crack between the sidewalk and foundation last year. What I learned about it is that snakes are very sensitive to smell. I bought a product from Australia to spray there, but now that I know that I use ammonia, moth balls, bleach... anything with a strong smell. You need to keep putting it where your snakes are living. They wont like it and will leave. This summer I had a copperhead snake in the same place and knew what to do so he went away. BTW, my cousins wife pours cold water on them... lol But because they are in your house I think more drastic measures are required. Good luck. Let us know how you made out. (11/09/2005)

By Carol

Getting Rid of Garter Snakes

I live in Manitoba, Canada. Here we have garter snakes which are not poisonous. Killing them. I wouldn't cause if the snakes can get into your basement then the mice can also get in. Do you have problems with mice? Probably not cause the snakes are eating them. Then again, garter snakes don't bother me. I was the one that picked them up in the summertime and brought them to the house to show my mom.


My brother in law was mentioning that he also had snakes in his basement. His solution...find the hole that they were getting a crumbling wall next to a window and seal it tight.

As the other poster mentioned, they are probably in hibernation now so you may have to wait until spring before you can find them again in your basement a thorough cleaning of the basement and have a friend who can pick up/get rid of the snakes for you. (11/09/2005)

By valleyrimgirl

Getting Rid of Gardner Snakes

These are very beneficial snakes and are harmless. I would try and call your local game commission or your local humane society and they may tell you someone that can come and rescue them. Snakes have a bad reputation, that is because the public is not educated on them. They are in hibernation now, but I hope you find an answer, verses killing them. (11/09/2005)

By Malinda

Getting Rid of Gardner Snakes

I wish I could come and get those snakes for you! Plugging up holes, cracks, etc. is probably all it will take added with some sealant. People call these snakes Gardner as well as Garter and I wish you the best in clearing them out of your house :) (11/09/2005)

By Anonymous

Getting Rid of Gardner Snakes

Make sure the traps are near warm areas like the hot water heater the dryer or the crack of the door, any window sills or places they would bask in sunlight. Near pipes or places with water are also good places for the glue traps, my mom is having the same problem and you can take them out with a shovel once they get their heads stuck. (11/12/2005)

By Sereta

Getting Rid of Gardner Snakes

I had a snake problem and was so scared so I understand fully. The house I purchased was left empty for a couple years. Moth balls, bleach, hot pepper flakes, soap flake, bowl of antifreeze, and boiled tobacco didn't work. Spraying them with a hose didn't because they just came right back. I had black snakes which are like north eastern garter snakes but bigger. Close up any and all holes. spring time eggs will be hatching so get yourself a couple cats to get rid of any babies. (I borrowed neighbors cats) big ones I used a outdoor/indoor vacuum cleaner. I could suck them, then run - my daughter could empty it in a trash bag but couldn't suck them. Together we got the job done. We had to put them in a trash bag because at first we put them outside but they would be all around the house trying to get back in and when I had one in the engine of my car, any mercy from me left. To keep them out, I purchased bricks of this rat poison I purchased at a feed store. More powerful than dept store rat posion. soon I found dead rats outside. I had no idea the house had rats in it. These darn snakes didn't even run from me. They thought they owned this place, but I showed them. (12/02/2005)

By Debbie

Getting Rid of Gardner Snakes

I agree with mousie. Let the kids in the neighborhood come in a get them for you, or get a cat to take care of them. I hope they will leave you alone (04/06/2006)

By donjr107

Getting Rid of Gardner Snakes

Today I was mowing my lawn and I noticed they were climbing out of my siding into a hole under in the sidewalk! I killed two and my neighbor came and fetched them out, but I seen like 4 more. How do I get rid of em?


By Maria

Getting Rid of Gardner Snakes

Please do not kill these snakes. They are an important part of our ecosystem. It's understandable that you do not want snakes in your house but instead of killing them find alternative methods to remove them from your home, one I suggest is: if you have a national/state park near you, call and see about a naturalist coming to your home and removing them. These people are in a field that cares for all animals and their importance; I'm sure they would be happy to help you out. (06/29/2006)

By Katie

Getting Rid of Gardener Snakes


I rarely see snakes but I when I was running I found one all ripped apart in a field and I freaked! The next day a huge brown and white striped one was slithering through our stone wall and it scared me! It looked too big to be a gardener and it was odd colors. (07/26/2006)

By Scuba Steve

Getting Rid of Gardner Snakes

Go to the hardware store and ask for sulfur to put around the outside of the house or yard. It works on all kinds of snakes (10/20/2006)

By joe

Getting Rid of Gardner Snakes

Call the local animal police or pest control and they will get rid of them without killing them. :) (03/17/2007)

By someone helpful

Getting Rid of Gardner Snakes

Thanks for the info
I've got an old dead tree that I need in my yard to keep neighbors from driving on my grass
It is full of garden snakes
I understand the eco system, but there are enough of these snakes to take care of the state
Is there anything that can be sprayed on them
to rid (RIP) them all at once.

By Meme

Getting Rid of Gardner Snakes

Why do you want to get rid of garter snakes. They are not poisonous, they don't have no fangs. (04/24/2007)

By zach

Getting Rid of Gardner Snakes

i have gardener snakes in my basement, and every now and again they make there way upstairs, what can I do to keep them out of my basement?
I do not mind them outside and I am not afraid of them I just would rather keep them out, is there anything I can put in the basement to keep them out, I have tried bleach, sulfur, the sonic plug ins, but nothing seems to make them go away, the pest control people even put stuff on the outside to keep them away and they keep coming back, ANY suggestions would be great. hayesbstsz AT (05/01/2007)

By Shelli

Getting Rid of Gardner Snakes

They do bite though

By Alex Cole

Getting Rid of Gardner Snakes

I live in an old farm house and have found that last year my cats found snakes in the basement and they would bring them upstairs. Well I hate snakes and I know they eat other critters but they are not welcome in my house! Have any suggestions to get rid of them!!(05/31/2007)

By emtoh4u2

Getting Rid of Garter Snakes

The snakes you find won't all be poisonous, some don't even have fangs, so don't kill them if you don't have to. I'm not the biggest fan of them but I think they are pretty cool. (06/08/2007)


Getting Rid of Garter Snakes

To get rid of garter snakes if you're not afraid of them, grab them by the neck (07/10/2007)

By austin Lipscomb

Getting Rid of Garter Snakes

Just pick it up by it's neck and remove it from your house if you don;t want it inside. Are you going to tell me you're afraid of tiny bugs too? These creatures are harmless, get over it. (07/23/2007)

By Erik

Getting Rid of Garter Snakes

Ok. No effective poison or deterrent has been found to "ward" off snakes. You will simply be on your own on getting rid of them. Try not to go on a rampage and slaughter the entire population, even though you may hate and/or fear these harmless creatures. You should try to call some pest or animal control center or animal care facility to see if you can get someone to remove them from the area. If you are not afraid, just pick them up, preferably by the neck so you don't get bitten. Also, you should try to remove things that attract them, like tall grasses around the house that harbor insects that they feed on, don't leave firewood, boards, or other shelters for them around the yard, and you should make sure to get rid of any rodent problems you might have (rats?) due to the fact that they could be prey for the snakes. (09/10/2007)

By Josh

Getting Rid of Garter Snakes

They're so cool! How could you possibly not like them!? Don't kill them. If it bothers you that much, call someone to come and remove them. (09/18/2007)

By Julia

Getting Rid of Garter Snakes

Honestly, best way is to get over your fear, grab them up and put them outside away from your home. They really are harmless. Garter Snakes are basically pests where I live, Minnesota. I see my friends kill them all the time. I just last night rescued one from dieing in a half frozen pool! Either pick them up wearing a leather glove or call a pest control to rid them for you. If you want them dead, call the pest control. But please if you do not have to do not kill them, they are most likely eating the bugs in your basement for you! (02/10/2008)

By Corine

Getting Rid of Garter Snakes

This might be totally off the subject, but when do garter snakes come out of hibernation? (04/06/2008)

By fungching98

Getting Rid of Garter Snakes

Ugh. I shudder to think about snakes at all! I went outside today, and there was a snake right along my foundation. I live in an old farmhouse, I expect to see a few, but it turned and went into a crack under my porch! Probably right into the basement! YUCK! Looks like I am getting mothballs, ammonia, sulfur and cats. LOL! and my husband will have to be the one going to the basement for anything! (04/23/2008)

By Amy

Getting Rid of Garter Snakes

I know snakes are harmless, but if I had them in my basement like many who have posted on here, just shoot me now! I think my extreme fear comes from growing up on a farm w/3 brothers who loved to throw snakes at me when they found them. I am absolutely petrified and I know I would pass out cold if I had to touch one. I have been finding them in my flower beds. I'm thinking of removing all flowers and planting shrubs. I would sacrifice my flowers vs. coming face-to-face with a snake. Good luck to those who have them inside their basements. I know I will have nightmares tonight. (04/25/2008)

By Missy

Getting Rid of Garter Snakes

Kill 'em. They are nowhere close to being endangered. They are also good catfish bait, especially the babies. (05/04/2008)

By Jeff

Getting Rid of Garter Snakes

I love to do gardening and I love to see snakes around me totally harmless. If I had them in my basement I would some how catch them, and put them outside. That simple! (05/12/2008)

By Lily from New York

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June 3, 20160 found this helpful

I was totally panicked when a small garter snake appeared on my car dashboard while I was driving. After stopping and leaving the car to get help, the snake disappeared. I drove home without wrecking my car which was a miracle and when I opened the car door, the snake dropped out. My fear is that there may be another or more in the car - any suggestions how to flush out any that might still be in the car? Probably got the critter(s) when on the day before picked up old artificial flowers from the ground at a family gravesite in a brushy cemetery on Memorial Day - put the flowers in my trunk.

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June 10, 20160 found this helpful

Moth ball, plenty of it, one of the ingredients in snake repellent also keeps rats and other animals away from your yards. Find moth ball in the laundry isle

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February 20, 20170 found this helpful

to all the people who say don't kill them i wont if they stay outside the minute the enter my home they are dead. This goes for all animals and vermin and bugs if you don't live here don't come in. I live in IL if one of you bleeding heart libs would like to live outside my house and watch for them so they never come in but don't say a word to me if you are unwilling to give up your whole life and never sleep again.

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