I was terrifed a month or so ago, when I was ascending the basement steps, and a snake was curled in the corner. I was absolutely terrified, and beat it with a mop I was taking upstairs to throw away. It kept moving, and then I sprayed it, with I don't know what---and it stopped moving. I put the mop over it and went into to town until my husband got off work. I put mothballs around, because I heard that repels them, but got an awful headache. We got something at the farm store called snake-away, and it smelled like moth balls. Also, we live next to fields in the country, and sometimes mice are a problem. I think we have gotten rid of them.
Snakes are less likely to go where there's no food source. Mice in the fields are food for snakes. Have you considered getting cats to keep the mice population down?
Re:looking for Snake advice
I believe if I were you,i'd go in to my local Library and look at a book about snakes to see what kind it was before I tried to kill it. It possibly could have been a helpful snake like a Gopher snake that was only looking for mice. They keep my property clear of poisonous snakes here in Arizona and for that I'm very grateful. They won't bother you if you don't hem them into a corner or try to harm them. Find out how it got into your basement and stop the hole up so you won't have it happen again.
You seem to have done the main thing - get rid of their food source, the mice. Keep on top of them and the snakes will have no reason to come in. Keep the area around the house clear of long grass, debris, building materials so they have nowhere to hide and at least you can see them coming and retreat. More importantly if you don't want to get bitten is NEVER attack a snake with a mop!!!! We have lots of venomous snakes in Australia and almost all people who are bitten have tried to kill the snake. Snakes are usually not aggressive unless cornered/threatened/surprised, e.g. by people stepping on them in long grass. They are shy creatures and if possible will avoid humans. Here we have wildlife experts who will come and remove any snakes in or near property and can also identify them so you know if your visitors are venomous or not. The last thing you should do is try and kill a snake - just stand still until the snake moves away or retreat slowly and close the door to contain them until you can get expert help. Keeping a dog is also handy - they will kill snakes - but make sure you don't make a pet of the dog as many dogs are bitten and die killing snakes here!
Obviously the snake managed to get into your basement by discovering a hole of some sort in the wall of the basement that leads outside. Snakes are Exotherms, meaning they don't maintain a constant body temperature. So, Snakes will spend a certain amount of time in the sun to raise their body temperature, and will hide in the shade to lower their body temperature. A basement is a perfect place for a snake to go into to escape the heat. Therefore, while being extremely careful not to get bitten, ( Don't go craming your hand into a dark hole,) search for a possible entrance to the basement that a snake could get through, and if you discover one, plug it up fitfully so as the snake can not enter again. Also, one of the main prey for a snake is Mice. Mice also love the basement for all of the hiding places and things to chew on. Set mouse traps, and poison. Also, if you have a cat, let it into the basement to search for the Mice. ( Make sure it doesn't eat the poison.) I hope this was of help to you.
Get CATS! I had snake problems galore when I first moved into our country home. We were told about cats keeping snakes away. So we got two. Our first year you couldn't walk to the mailbox without seeing a snake of some kind in the yard. Since that first year, we have not had a snake problem at all, or mice. :o)
We had to call Animal Control (some people still call them dog catchers) on several different critters over the years - a possum under the kiitchen sink when we lived near a cemetary- a swarm of bees at my moms - a ground squirrel that got in & actually chewed huge holes in the playpen & 2 snakes - all at different places !
The 1rst was a black snake that had taken up residence in a hole behind the kitchen stove & looked like it was 6 ft long ! & the 2nd one was out in my yard & had started up a pole on the patio- after a nest of bird eggs ! All snakes here in Missouri are protected by Law --
They come with a pole with a hoop on the end that they can tighten & hauled it off -
We live near a semi-famous Nature trail & once there was a deer that broke thru a plate glass of a downtown coffeeshop & left hoof prints across the top of their baby grande piano !
They will respond - even if it does sometimes take awhile & even if it seems silly !
I've heard that rat terriers kill snakes. And I've also heard that most dogs and snakes don't get along, so just having a dog around might help.
Snakes do like mice but you can be rid of mice be growing mint around or putting mint oil on rags or cotton balls and toss them aroung.
I was going to suggest getting a cat or two, several others have already suggested that - it does work! I have also heard of spreading a line of lime (the white stuff from the garden dept) around the boarder of your yard. Supposedly snakes won't cross the white line - don't know if it's the color or something in the lime. If you do find a small hole where mice were getting in, stuff it (with a stick, not your hand - I'm afraid of snakes and othere creatures!) with steel wool. The mice cannot chew through this.
Thanks to everyone who gave me advice, and I want y ou to know that I deeply appreciate all of you!
Everyone gave me good advice, and I will use ALL of it! Sorry it took me so long to respond, but have had trouble with my computer. of it!
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