You're Inviting Snakes to Your Home If You Have This in Your Yard
You can help avoid an unexpected run in with the slithering reptiles by getting rid of one thing.
Most homeowners would argue that their yards are just as important to the essence of their homes as the rooms within four walls and under a roof. But as with anything exposed to nature, how you choose to decorate or maintain your lawn can affect the animals and insects that choose to visit or take up residence there. And according to experts, keeping one thing in your yard might attract snakes onto your property and into your home. Read on to see what could be drawing in the slithering reptiles.
You may need to reconsider how you approach snake control on your property.
Depending on your personal views, the idea of having snakes anywhere on your property can make someone feel anxious—especially if it means they could come across one unexpectedly. But unlike some rodents and insects that can damage your yard or home, the slithering reptiles can't really be seen as pests themselves, thanks to the benefits they can provide.
According to experts, non-venomous snakes help out by hunting and eating mice, rats, roaches, moles, grasshoppers, toads, slugs, and more wildlife that can actually damage your garden or pose a more immediate health risk by getting indoors. And unlike these unwanted yard dwellers, they don't dig damaging burrows or eat fruits and vegetables you may be cultivating.
"It's an indicator of a healthy ecosystem, to have a snake in your yard [or garden]," Melissa Amarello, co-founder and director of education for Advocates for Snake Preservation, tells gardening blog Hello Homestead. "It means you have a friendly yard going on, enough to support a predator."
Having one thing in your yard can make it easy for snakes to feel right at home.
However, experts caution that not all types of snakes will be a welcome sight on your property. Certain poisonous species can pose a risk for pets, children, or homeowners who inadvertently encounter one while doing yard work. And while it's impossible to prevent all snakes from entering your property in search of their next meal, you can avoid attracting them by getting rid of any unkempt grass.
"If you have tall grass in your yard, there's a good chance that snakes will start to frequent the area," Craig Zeigler, owner of Agronomic Lawn Management, tells Best Life. "They're known for being attracted to it because it provides them with cover and makes it easier for them to hunt prey. If you have a snake problem in your yard, the best thing to do is to cut down the grass and remove any other potential hiding spots."
Tall grass can also create an inviting environment for some other undesirable critters.
Besides providing hiding places from their natural predators, such as hawks, owls, or other birds of prey, experts warn that an unkempt lawn could give snakes plenty of time to get comfortable on your property. "Chances are that if your yard is overgrown, it's because you don't use it that often, meaning that the snake's hiding place will remain relatively undisturbed," Ty Jones, owner of lawn and pest company Deans Services, tells Best Life.
But it's also not just reptiles you should be worried about setting up camp in your yard. "Aside from snakes, tall grass can also provide shelter to other pests, such as rodents, spiders, grasshoppers, etc. These critters are what snakes feed on, meaning they don't have to leave the grassy area to hunt," Jones says.
On top of maintaining a regular mowing schedule, it's also essential to keep other vegetation under control. Experts recommend using a weed whacker to keep perimeter grass under control, as well as making sure to trim bushes, branches, and other foliage that may be creating hiding spots for snakes and their favorite prey.
There may be other items in your yard attracting snakes close to your home.
And it's not just tall grass that could be making your lawn a hotbed of legless reptiles: Even storing vital tools such as garden hoses may also be attracting snakes into your yard. According to the experts at ThisOldHouse.com, piled hoses can provide the perfect type of shelter that snakes seek out to avoid predators and stay warm.
On top of becoming a makeshift shelter, hoses can also create standing water that provides an inviting place for snakes to nest. Make sure to regularly check your equipment for any holes or small leaks in the hose that might create pools when in use. You should also always turn off the water source from the faucet whenever it's not in use to avoid any accidental flooding thanks to a leaky nozzle or defective spigot. If you notice that your hose is leaking where it attaches to the faucet, try installing plumber's tape to create a better seal or replacing the fixture.