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annie68164 04-01-2012 11:11 AM

Garter snake problem
I was at my mother in law's this morning. She is elderly and lives in an apt. complex with 4 other units all ground level. So I go to walk outside and there is a pile of maybe 5 or so snakes just a few feet from her door. There is a baseball sized hole under the cement pad and that's where the snakes live. My question is, could there be more than just a few to where its a threat of infestation? Or are the ones out sunning themselves in plain view all there is? I don't know what's typical for garter snakes. Anyway the elderly folks that live in these apts. all came out with their walkers and are terrified the snakes could get into their apts. since their doors are even with the ground. I don't know if this is a real concern or not. Would they possibly get into people's apartments? We may try to glue trap and release them and then of course fill that hole in. One resident wants us to just spade them to death. I don't know if killing a few would really get rid of the problem. I feel like smashing around with a spade would cause vibrations (and a death odor?) to keep the others from coming out. I don't know. I just would love to hear any advice from people who know the deal with these snakes.

joecaption 04-01-2012 11:16 AM

creeper 04-01-2012 11:20 AM

It would be a shame to hurt them after all they are keeping the mice population down. OTH you can't have scared seniors. I think the snakes are just as scared and really don't want to go in their units.
I hope you can just leave them alone, but I think they habitat together

annie68164 04-01-2012 01:28 PM

I agree with not killing them. It's just they are so close to her door-about 4 feet- that they're scared to death the snakes will slip into the apt.

Daniel Holzman 04-01-2012 01:45 PM

I had a family of garter snakes living under my shingles and above my sill beam. I had no idea until I built a deck, and a dozen or so snakes exited when I cut the siding to install the ledger board. I happen to like snakes, so it was not a problem. I can tell you that in 21 years in my house, despite living in very close proximity to many garter snakes, I have never seen one in my house. Your snakes may be more adventurous.

I understand that many people are terrified of snakes, however garter snakes are not likely to bite, since they are small and prefer mice. It would be a different matter if you had Burmese pythons on the loose, and unfortunately Florida is apparently now full of them, along with lots of other nasty creatures, but garter snakes are really far down on the list of dangerous things in the wild.

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