OT- If you find a rattlesnake in your back yard-do you kill it?

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Submitted by Navydoc on October 24, 2012 - 10:43am

I guess I really do live in the country after all. Yesterday evening I was cleaning up some garbage a fox had strewn around my undeveloped back yard when I moved an empty box from the move to use as a container. Right underneath the box was a well-fed rattlesnake- could still see the bulge in it's belly from a recent meal. Since it was cold it was very sluggish, didn't even respond to me, and I could have easily killed it with a rock. I chose not to kill it, as I like snakes way more than mice, but this morning I was questioning that decision, as this isn't really a harmless snake we're talking about here. I guess killing it isn't really going to accomplish anything, where there's one there's more, but the idea of having to dose my dog with anti-venin doesn't thrill me much. Not to mention my daughter. Although I think the dog is more likely to mess with the snake than my daughter is.

So what do you guys think? Anybody else kill these things when they see them? Guess I'm getting my money's worth for the view lot. Ocrenter, you live near me, what do you do?

Submitted by bearishgurl on October 24, 2012 - 11:01am.

Navydoc, I see you've relocated back to SD and are enjoying your new digs w-a-a-a-ay out in lizardland ;)

If I were you, I would have killed it. I would have been too afraid it would later attack my dog or a family member. As you probably know, rattlesnake antidotes are horrible to go thru, for man or beast. And one doesn't have to mess with one to get bitten. They could just inadvertently disturb it and it could attack. The recovery from their bite is horrible to go thru, as well.

If you see it again, I would advise you to kill it, or at the very least, trap it in a plastic garbage can with a lid and call animal control to see if there are any agencies who will to "relocate" it far away.

I have a feeling that one won't be the last one you will see. Among other creatures, they are part of the "territory" when you are living in a recent development encroaching upon "lizardland."

Submitted by plm on October 24, 2012 - 11:07am.

Also in Stonebridge with a view lot. I think you should look into snake fences. That way you don't have to kill them and also be safe. Will be having my landscaper add one once he's done with the backyard. Neighbor had issues with snakes and got a snake fence.

Welcome to Stonebridge. I think you will love it here.

Submitted by UCGal on October 24, 2012 - 11:12am.

bearishgurl wrote:
Navydoc, I see you've relocated back to SD and are enjoying your new digs w-a-a-a-ay out in lizardland ;)

You don't have to be in Lizardland to get rattle snakes... Just have to back to a canyon.
I live in UC - and we get the occasional snake in our yard.

Prior to owning our dog - we'd relocate the snake.

Now that we have a dog - who might decide to go after the snake... We would kill it.

Haven't had a snake recently, though, so that decision is moot so far.

Submitted by bearishgurl on October 24, 2012 - 11:26am.

UCGal wrote:
bearishgurl wrote:
Navydoc, I see you've relocated back to SD and are enjoying your new digs w-a-a-a-ay out in lizardland ;)

You don't have to be in Lizardland to get rattle snakes... Just have to back to a canyon.
I live in UC - and we get the occasional snake in our yard.

Prior to owning our dog - we'd relocate the snake.

Now that we have a dog - who might decide to go after the snake... We would kill it.

Haven't had a snake recently, though, so that decision is moot so far.

Have you ever found a rattlesnake behind your property, UCGal?

Submitted by NotCranky on October 24, 2012 - 12:42pm.

I relocate them after killing them first,about 1/2 dozen per year or more.
My dog has been bitten twice and I have young kids.
Wherever I would relocate them to has enough snakes, or else it's not a good place for rattlesnakes...pretty simple. My five year old noticed a rattlesnake while we were pulling up green bean plants. We were all just reaching down in there pulling away until enough plants were gone to see the snake.

FYI, The first time the dog got bit it was really bad because It was about 100 degrees out and it was hours after the bite when I first noticed. The dog could not breath well, or more importantly pant. His blood was boiling and that's what would have killed him, not the actual poison. I took him to the vet and the vet gave him an ice bath and anti-venin and kept him for a week.

The second time it was cooler and I notice right away. I found a snake near the house mad as hell so I knew the dog had been there first. I killed the snake and started wetting the dog with a cool spray immediately we got him on benadryl and rest.
He got better in about 3 days. Swelled up pretty bad in the neck area and slobbered a lot but is fine now.

Submitted by SK in CV on October 24, 2012 - 12:46pm.

Blogstar wrote:
I relocate them after killing them first,about 1/2 dozen per year or more.

If you're going to kill them first, why don't you just relocate them to your trash can?

Submitted by NotCranky on October 24, 2012 - 12:49pm.

SK in CV wrote:
Blogstar wrote:
I relocate them after killing them first,about 1/2 dozen per year or more.

If you're going to kill them first, why don't you just relocate them to your trash can?

I let my chickens eat them, no waste. I like to make my kids wonder if a snake is going to come out when we crack the eggs.

Submitted by Aecetia on October 24, 2012 - 1:10pm.

We kill them for the same reason, pets and kids. It is a dog eat dog world and we have snake fence in the back yard, so if they end up here anyway, they die. I do however move non poisonous snakes out of the street and one out of the pool to safety. I appreciate the work they do.

Submitted by localguy on October 24, 2012 - 1:13pm.

We have killed 2 and had a chase and no kill on another out here in Stonebridge. On one of the kills the snake was slithering along the house, I was watching my little boy and the dog following something which was odd. By the time I came across the yard to investigate, they had went around the corner and followed the snake as it went behind a dog house. I asked my little boy (3 years) what he was doing and he replied "snake". I grabbed a shovel and did the deed!
Localguy

Submitted by UCGal on October 24, 2012 - 1:57pm.

bearishgurl wrote:
UCGal wrote:
bearishgurl wrote:
Navydoc, I see you've relocated back to SD and are enjoying your new digs w-a-a-a-ay out in lizardland ;)

You don't have to be in Lizardland to get rattle snakes... Just have to back to a canyon.
I live in UC - and we get the occasional snake in our yard.

Prior to owning our dog - we'd relocate the snake.

Now that we have a dog - who might decide to go after the snake... We would kill it.

Haven't had a snake recently, though, so that decision is moot so far.

Have you ever found a rattlesnake behind your property, UCGal?


Yes. Twice. In our backyard. We back to a canyon - so it's not surprising.

And a neighbors dog was bitten last year.

And to the point I was making... I don't think most people would call Mira Mesa "lizardland". But my workplace backs onto Lopez Canyon. We regularly see rattle snakes during the summer. And a baby got inside the building a few years ago (Picture from the outside - looking into a store room.)
snake at work

Submitted by bearishgurl on October 24, 2012 - 2:28pm.

UCGal wrote:
. . . (Picture from the outside - looking into a store room.)
snake at work

omg! Does anyone know how it got in?

Submitted by jwizzle on October 24, 2012 - 3:02pm.

BG - I live in UC too, I have heard of other friends/neighbors on canyons finding them. I know of one couple that found a healthy 5-footer in their kitchen. After I heard this, I ruled out all canyon homes in San Diego. My husband and I have considered a move to olivenhain/rsf in a couple of years, fear of rattlesnakes has been what holds me back. I am truly phobia-afraid - I get hysterical seeing snakes on tv or at the zoo.

Navydoc - the answer is yes, it is absolutely dying. But I can guarantee not by me - hopefully the hubby would respond to the hysterical screaming before I passed out and made myself an easy target for the snake.

Submitted by upwardspiral on October 24, 2012 - 3:04pm.

I live on a view lot in Stonebridge. I killed a baby rattlesnake just last week. It is important to note that baby rattlesnakes are much more dangerous than adults. Babies are born with fangs and venom, but do not yet have the ability to control the amount of venom they pump. This is not to say that I would not kill an adult rattle snake. I have two dogs and a very curious 3 year old son. I will relocate non-poisonous snakes, but I will kill any dangerous reptiles or insects that enter my yard.

I purchased in Stonebridge approximately one year ago and this was the first snake that I have seen in my yard. I attribute this to the snake fence we added. This fence also keeps the wild rabbits out that will destroy a nice lawn if given the chance.

My next door neighbor began landscaping their back yard a few weeks ago and I believe that the snake entered under the fence that seperates our two yards. They have not yet installed a snake fence and their un-lanscaped yard probably was a home to this snake's family.

There is a powder that was recently approved to be sold in California that can be sprinkled around a property(it has been available in other states). I have not purchased it yet, but was told Home Depot carries it. Snakes are repelled by this powder. I will be spreading this around the perimeter of my yard after I am confident that there are no additional snakes in my yard that I might be trapping inside by applying the powder too soon.

I will say that we love Stonebridge and are very happy that we chose to move here, snakes and all. This site was a huge help in making our decision. A big Thank You to you all!

Submitted by NotCranky on October 24, 2012 - 3:23pm.

The snakes coldblooded attributes don't help it much. Rarely are conditions just right for them to be too feisty. However a few weeks ago on a morning after a very warm night, I came across one about 5' long that had a lot of vigor. It put up a big tail rattling ,hissing fight . It actually charged me, which is a first.

Submitted by jwizzle on October 24, 2012 - 3:30pm.

upwardspiral wrote:
I live on a view lot in Stonebridge. I killed a baby rattlesnake just last week. It is important to note that baby rattlesnakes are much more dangerous than adults. Babies are born with fangs and venom, but do not yet have the ability to control the amount of venom they pump. This is not to say that I would not kill an adult rattle snake. I have two dogs and a very curious 3 year old son.

I read somewhere recently that the baby rattlers are more dangerous thing is a myth. It's true they cannot control their venom, but they have much less venom than an adult, so it's a wash. One thing is that a baby is much less likely to give you a " dry" bite, so in that respect, they are more dangerous.

I think it's interesting how many of us have 3 year olds!

Submitted by plm on October 24, 2012 - 4:00pm.

upwardspiral,

Can I ask if your snake fence is green to match the iron fence? Trying to find 100ft rolls of 1/4" mesh that is green.

The professional snake fence company I spoke with mentioned that the mesh is needed under the wooden fences between the yards and also the gate needs to be snake proofed as well.

Submitted by UCGal on October 24, 2012 - 4:15pm.

bearishgurl wrote:
UCGal wrote:
. . . (Picture from the outside - looking into a store room.)
snake at work

omg! Does anyone know how it got in?


Nope... that was the big mystery.

I can honestly say I work with a snakes. HA!

Submitted by svelte on October 24, 2012 - 5:38pm.

Yes, I kill them. Wife's orders, I'm the enforcer of her zero tolerance policy. Not my favorite job but somebody's gotta do it.

And yes, our dog has been bitten by a rattler. The dog was a pup and the snake was a baby. It was a very expensive week at the vet.

Submitted by NotCranky on October 24, 2012 - 6:53pm.

UCGal wrote:
bearishgurl wrote:
UCGal wrote:
. . . (Picture from the outside - looking into a store room.)
snake at work

omg! Does anyone know how it got in?


Nope... that was the big mystery.

I can honestly say I work with a snakes. HA!

Looks like "relocation" job to me.

Submitted by ocrenter on October 24, 2012 - 7:14pm.

This is a big issue with canyon view lots in all of SoCal, stonebridge or otherwise.

Have encountered one single one near the garage and it was an automatic kill order.

Otherwise since we are not canyon adjacent this has not been an issue.

I agree with everyone so far, snake fencing is a must for all canyon adjacent homes.

Submitted by Navydoc on October 24, 2012 - 8:01pm.

Thanks everyone. Yeah, in retrospect I should have killed it, but it's gone now. When I throw those boxes away this weekend I'll be picking them up REALLY carefully. I hate to kill a snake, since I love them. I'm the year of the snake, and have even had a few as pets, but a dangerous one this close to me and my family should be destroyed. My girl is almost 5 and she was terrified of it so I don't have to worry about her seeking them out of curiosity. I'm definitely looking into those snake fences.

By the way, don't roadrunners eat snakes? I saw one of those walking along the fence a few days ago. Do they make roadrunner attractant?

Now let's talk about the scorpion I found in the garage.

Submitted by NotCranky on October 24, 2012 - 8:22pm.

The scorpions around here are not that terrible, as far as I know, I don't kill them but do keep a distance.

The tarantula vs. tarantula hawk battle is pretty interesting. The tarantula hawk is a beautiful huge blue and orange wasp like critter(probably is a wasp,don't know for sure). It flies around looking in holes for tarantulas and goes in after them. They often drag them out of the holes to do battle. The tarantula hawk always wins, as far as I know. It then lays its eggs in the dead, or dieing,tarantula!

I did just see a road runner in the yard today, they are neat. King snakes eat rattlesnakes, but unfortunately, I have not seen one since buying this rural lot in 2004.

Submitted by svelte on October 24, 2012 - 8:27pm.

This thread is a trip.

We heard a comedian a few months ago talking about snake fences in his routine. We thought he was joking and have been lobbing "snake fence" jokes at each other for months now.

With this thread, I find out they are real!! I just googled it - they sell them!

I can't quite wrap my head around the concept - they must just work with bigger snakes cuz smaller ones would scurry right through I would think.

And don't snakes climb?

Submitted by spdrun on October 24, 2012 - 9:30pm.

Snakemeat is edible. Kill 'em, and fry it up :)

Submitted by CA renter on October 24, 2012 - 11:51pm.

I would definitely kill a rattlesnake in our yard, but would leave the non-poisonous ones alone. No need to even relocate the non-poisonous ones, IMHO, since they go after all the rodents, etc.

It sounds like the rattlesnake population is doing very well this year. There's been an increase in sightings around here (La Costa area). A couple of people we know have had them in and around their houses in just the past couple of months. One (a baby) was in our friend's kitchen when she accidentally stumbled upon it.

Submitted by cvmom on October 25, 2012 - 7:39am.

spdrun wrote:
Snakemeat is edible. Kill 'em, and fry it up :)

When I was young and my dad found and killed a large rattlesnake, we did eat it. Tasted like chicken, I still remember it, LOL

Submitted by UCGal on October 25, 2012 - 9:02am.

The first snake we saw, not long after we moved in, was a king snake. My older son was 3 or 4 and shouted out "SNAKE". My husband ignored him... but the shouts continued, so he looked... there, along the back wall of the house (backyard) was a nice sized king snake.

Very cool.

Actually - now that I think about it - we haven't had any snakes in our yard since the owls moved into the owl box 2 doors up. We're on our second season of having the owls there.

The tarantula hawk thing sounds very cool to watch.

Submitted by Essbee on October 25, 2012 - 12:58pm.

Several months back, we were hiking on the trails around 4S and my 3 year old daughter knelt down, saying, "What's this??" She was actually touching a baby rattlesnake! Thank goodness it was kinda cool and the snake was lethargic. It was alive though...could see the tongue going in and out.

We're not on a canyon, but that didn't stop our next door neighbors from having a coyote and several raccoons get into a giant fight in his backyard! We saw the raccoons... they stripped our peach tree a few months ago. We're trying to save at least a few of the persimmons for our friends.

Submitted by CardiffBaseball on October 25, 2012 - 10:16pm.

I ate some rattlesnake at the "Rattlesnake Roundup" in Sweetwater Texas back in my West Texas days. Kind of chewy and not much flavor if you've ever tried Alligator it was that same feel.

College kids used to help fund school by collecting up Rattlesnakes for the roundup, where they were paid by the pound. In their pits, they are somewhat docile and you just reach in with the snake tool and pull them out. My neighbor used to get snakes as well. He was a total redneck, I sat there and watched him milk the venom one day and show me how he puts the venom in his 357 hollow tip bullets. Then he'd put a layer of wax over the venom to supposedly keep it from spattering when the bullet was launched. He was nuts I took my one year old over as he prepped a deer for hanging in his garage. Showed me how you have to carefully cut away this piss sack so as not to spoil the meat. Anyway it would freak my kid out watching that snake's mouth come open during the milking. We kept our distance.

Submitted by upwardspiral on October 26, 2012 - 6:26am.

I actually purchased galvanized mesh. It was about 3 feet tall and I buried the bottom 6" or so to make it harder for anything to want to burrow under. You do not even notice that it is there unless you are looking for it. The green iron fence is so noticable that the galvanized mesh does not stand out. All of my neighbors homes I have visited used galvanized as well. It is counter intuitive, but I think that the green mesh would actually stand out much more. I would also worry about UV break down with plastic mesh.

I purchased the mesh at Home Depot. It is just a metal cloth similar to the mesh shown on the top second from left on this website:
http://www.twpinc.com/wire-mesh/TWPCAT_S...
It cuts easily with good tin-snips.

You are correct, I should add snake fence under the wooden fences between yards and snake proof our gate as well.

BTW - How great is the Home Depot on Scripps Poway Prkwy. I have never seen a less crowded HD. I actually asked an employee if they were afraid that it might close and was told that it would not as it is the closest Home Depot for residents of Ramona and that surrounding area. The Costco next door is pretty amazing as well.

I have yet to see any scorpions.

Speaking of Scorpians...maybe one of the Presidential candidates could get the band to perform the very timely 'Rock you like a Hurricane' anthem during one of their campaign stops on the east coast.

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