Tuesday, September 8, 2015

OH HELL NO

SO...here is what greeted me at the farm this weekend.  I walked into the kitchen and saw this and thought "what is THAT"?


Then I looked closer...SNAKE SKIN!!  

Are you freaking kidding me?

Where did it come from?

Shed snake skin
I peered around the corner...  

Not only was it like 20  17  4 feet LONG...it started from inside the guest room closet!  It looks like it went around the corner, shedding it's skin...and then disappeared elsewhere into the house.


You can't imagine how much courage it took to open this door...but slowly, my heart racing, I pulled it open...


OK, so it wasn't anything as terrifying as this...it was just an empty closet.  

But every cabinet I looked in, drawer I opened, bed I looked under, I did so hesitantly.  Wherever it came in (and we have NO idea where) it apparently found its way back out.  2nd Man and I are torn.

We thought about some sort of snake repellent (does that even work?)...but of course we also haven't had any mouse activity (KNOCK ON WOOD) in months.  Is it our resident snake taking care of things?  Does it live under the house and just hangs around feeding on mice?  It's a pier and beam house elevated off the ground, so it could be underneath somewhere.

If so, where is it now?  In a hiding place we haven't discovered yet?  I can tell you that it does give us pause about the next time we spend the night out there.  No one wants to get up in the middle of the night and step on a snake.


Anyone ever had to deal with a snake in the house?

I guess I struck a chord with the snakes!  We love all the comments you have left and will reply to all, thank you!


64 comments:

  1. Ah - now THAT would worry me too. Did it get out again...? ;)

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    1. Yep, my thoughts exactly...not sure, I'm ASSUMING It left, because I looked all over the house unless it found a really secret spot.

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  2. At least it won't stick around if there's nothing to eat! But it does seem to keep checking in to see if things have changed.

    I've dealt with so many rat snakes this year (they think baby chicks are great snacks! and will expand to pestering the grown chickens) that my first thought on seeing one is just 'grab it and stuff it in a feed sack'. Stepping on one would just be the first step to grab and bag for me. Yes, my life is really odd.

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    1. Now that's a good point...yep, this is most likely a rat snake. A big one. Just grab and stuff in a sack? Yikes...I'll admit that scares me but hey, in a few years I might be an old pro at it, ha. Thanks for sharing that!!

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  3. I would have to sell up, lol,
    honestly,, thats worse than having a bear!!!!!!!

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    1. LOL! You are too funny...I hear ya. I think I might rather have a bear, ha.

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  4. oh I forgot to answer,, yes we had a garter snake in the basement, I did what all good daughters do, I called my daddy, lol, I was 40 years old and Garry was at work, I can tolerate a lot of stuff but I draw the line at snakes,, you are very brave to go looking!

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    1. Ha, I understand. There is something primordial about seeing a snake...it just brings out so many fears.

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  5. ok one more thing, lol, my husband said could you bait it in a trap,,

    a live trap I suppose, lol,

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    1. I think someone mentioned a trap below, tell your hubby great idea. I will see what all is involved. :-)

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  6. Many snake skins and snakes have gotten into our house. It is creepy but goes with the territory. Luckily, I am not afraid of snakes. Get some guinea fowl. They eat them and are self sufficient and fly up to roost in the trees at night. They aren't as domesticated as chickens, but they don't bother me and make wonderful watchdogs (as in noisy when they spy an interloper).

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    1. Yep, I figure it's part of the tradeoff for country living but it does take getting used to. Guinea fowl? Really? I think we'll look into that. You had me at "self sufficient", ha. Great idea for them to be like watchdogs. Thanks for the info!!

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    1. Now THAT I would think I might have to stay at a hotel, LOL!

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  8. Oh, Heck No would I go any further into the house. I would be running so fast down the road and still would be running.
    Go around the building and search for the smallest openings that are close to the ground. They allow a snake to enter the basement. If you have found such holes, barricade them immediately and close them off permanently.

    You could hire a professional or set some traps inside your house.

    They are attracted to a building, because these are their food sources. So, make sure you put pet’s food in a plastic container with lids. When there is no food source, there is no need to stay in the house. Snakes are looking for new places full of food like insects and rodents.

    As soon as all these food sources are successfully eliminated, the reptiles keep moving to other places, being in constant search of food. Some people choose spraying insecticides all over the area to kill the insects. They also use rodent repellents for their successful elimination.

    No cool places. Sacks, bricks and wood attract them as much as tall grass.

    Moth ball. ( take caution when using moth balls) They are another favorable option. Surround your house with them and you’ll see they really work. However, they should not be exposed in those areas with small children and / or pets. Don’t scatter the balls here and there. Just bury them into the soil in different parts of the yard instead. Though they may be toxic to the nature, when used carefully, they help to keep snakes at a bay.

    Trimming. Try to trim trees around the building, as tree snakes slip from trees to the roof quite easily. Keep in mind that the wooded areas around are probably inhabited with many types of snakes.

    Sulfur. If you are looking for the option with fast results, you might consider buying sulfur powder. Just take gloves and a mask and then sprinkle the powder like a line at all door entrances. After the rain reapply the line. Why sulfur? This substance is able to keep snakes away from your house and yard. It is proven well.

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    1. Be warned............Oh, one more thing: Be careful when using the toilet. Snakes have been known hiding in the toilet bowl

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    2. Thank you for all that valuable info. We love having this blog because we can use it (and others too) as a reference for the future. Lots of great info here in all these comments.

      No bushes around the house but I will definitely check all that other out. And oh yes, when we first get there to the house on the weekends, I very carefully, lift up the toilet lid and it scares me every time to do it. ;-)

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  9. Not fun for you to have this problem.... I found a very dead snake in a sticky trap behind our gas stove a few years ago. We use a special sticky trap for bugs - not the mouse kind. Anyway - you might try a snake deterrent like Snake Away granules. We ordered this product from Amazon but have not used it yet. At the very least, it would help you feel better!!!

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    1. Will check that out, thank you. I've often wondered if that works. Of course I'm torn if it's eating mice, ha. Thanks for the info!!

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  10. It's that time of year. Sounds like your snake is keeping the rodents in check. I would stuff any cracks (around plumbing etc) with steel wool & not worry a bit!

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    1. Thank you for the reassurance. I did use some steel wool in gaps but I'm guessing maybe I missed a spot, ha. thank you again!!

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  11. Snakes are vulnerable when they are shedding, so they seek out safe places to hide during the process. I think this is your same neighborhood rat snake that has been your temporary houseguest before.
    I encountered snake skins several times in the vacant back bedroom when I lived in the country. Never saw the actual snake. He came in to shed and then left. I was surrounded by miles of rice, milo, corn, and other crops on all 4 sides - so after the crops were harvested, guess where the rats and mice visited - yep, my house. I sooo hated those vermin, so I tolerated anything that helped me deter them.
    But I agree, it’s very un-nerving finding a big snake skin in the house. There’s an opening somewhere in your house, probably under it - close up the openings with spray foam that hardens and that should keep Snakey outside where he belongs.

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    1. Yep, I'm guessing the same thing...same snake or one of two. I guess if he (she) is coming in to do their shedding and then leaving, we're ok with that too. It's just kind of startling...I'll crawl around when the weather cools and see what I can find under the house. Thanks!!

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  12. As a child I used to keep snakes. Mother would not allow them in the house so they stayed in the corn crib of the barn. One day Mom was gone and I had a friend over. We had a freshly captured snake in a jar, left the lid off, and when we turned to carry the snake to the barn, it had escaped. I did not confess fearing death! Months and months later there was a snake skin in Mom's closet. She wondered how it had gotten in. I knew but I wasn't telling.

    Snakes do shed their skin when they are growing so you can thank it for eating your mice, Hang the snake skin on the wall honoring its work...Teasing! On the good news side, it appears to be a black snake so no poison.

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    1. I had some friends who did the snake thing while growing up. I just couldn't do it. It was fascinating, but still creeped me out a bit. Great memory of childhood! I was hoping it was a non poisonous variety. I have to ask, how could you tell from the skin? That might be valuable info for me to know someday, ha.

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  13. i woke up to find a huge black snake in the kitchen of my old farm house once. i think it came up the radiator pipe. i went to school and left it there and it was gone when i came home. scared the crap out of me though!

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    1. I can TOTALLY relate, ha. It takes a bit to get over once you've seen it and know that ti's possibly around...

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  14. We are up on the second floor and after reading this I am glad of it. I'll be worrying about them more once the main house is built. I have no suggestion....I'd be staying somewhere else lol

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  15. Welcome to Country Life
    Wait until you reach into a bag of something and have a bunch of mice run up your arm. What a hoot!

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    1. O
      M
      G

      Mice? Running up the arm? I think I would freak out at that, ha. I once had one in my pants (ran up my pants leg), not sure if you read the post:

      http://twomenandalittlefarm.blogspot.com/2012/08/of-mouse-and-1st-man.html

      Country living!! ;-)

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  16. Ooh I wouldn't do well with a snake in the house, hopefully it DID find it's way back outside.
    At least you should be mouse-free :)
    ~Jo

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    1. Definitely mouse-free, knock on wood, but at what price? :-)

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  17. Last snake I've seen here was caught in a mouse trap in the garage. It was not a big one. Husband saw one in our small pond. Last year saw the shed skin around a butterfly bush but not what shed it.

    If I had been you, I would have been freaked out. You've been so careful about closing off entry points, too. I don't think its still there if there's nothing for it to eat. Keep us all posted.

    What will you do with the skin? hang in the the barn?

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    1. Not sure what to do with the skin, good point. Yeah, we've closed up everything we thought we could but obviously....I missed a spot, ha.

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  18. I hate to say it but your mouse issues may return as soon as it cools off come winter. Those furry little critters are out and about making more furry critters. Come winter they will move right back into their 'winter home' where there is food, nesting materials and shelter. I'll take Jake the Snake over mice any day of the week!

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    1. VERY good point! We'll keep an eye out (and the openings as closed up as we can). And I like the name Jake for the snake!

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  19. Ack. I don't do snakes well.
    I hope yours has moved out. And stays out.

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  20. No. 1 you need to fill in every little nook, crook and crack around your plumbing, washing machine, dryer, heater, whatever, inside and under the house. They can crawl in though the tiniest of places. I've used Snake Away and it's ok. It's expensive and the ingredients are nothing more than what is in mothballs and sulfur. I used a product last year and this year called Snake Stopper. It is safe to use around wildlife and waterways. Since I live on a saltwater creek, I am very conscious of anything I use outside. The ingredients are cedar oil, cinnamon oil, clove oil, and it has sulfur and fuller's earth in it. (It smells nice!) Anyway, I did not see one snake in my yard last summer. I did see a few early this summer before I used it. We have had a lot of rain and I have not reapplied it because it is expensive too, but I still haven't seen the usual ones on my patio and porch. I've been saving my last container for the fall when they start moving again. My next suggestion would be to underpin your farmhouse. That open area is just beckoning them. When I was growing up my mother found a snake skin in a closet. Needless to say the house was torn apart. I can remember just dying when I had to get out of bed and put my foot on floor. The snake was never found, but the closet was next to a fireplace and every nook and cranny was puttied! A lot of people swear by sulfur, but I never had any luck with it. I had a huge old black rat snake ( a good 7 footer) living under my house one summer years ago. He would just go right through the sulfur. I would see him with a yellow sheen, so I know it didn't deter him! He would actually be peeping out of the crack he was getting in out of when I would come home from work. Like Donna said, Guineas are good too. I'm afraid the foxes would get them and the neighbors may not like them! I hate snakes!

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    1. Wow, more great info! Thank you for all that. I have SEEN a very long rat snake a couple of years ago a couple hundred feet from the house, in a tree. They are intimidating for sure.

      I will look into that snake stuff if we continue to have trouble. Will crawl under the house (not as scary as it sounds) and seal up more stuff. Just hope I don't seal it IN, ha.

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    2. That's what I was wondering, is if you had sealed him in? I am deathly afraid of snakes. I don't even like rubber ones. Lol. Margie in AR

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  21. Ah yes, snakes... once had a snake slither over my foot when I was working at my computer. Fortunately it was a wee garter snake, and I'm not afraid of snakes, but it was still a shock.

    This is what my grandfather did about snakes: Patch every opening into the house, even ones as small as the tip of a finger, with steel wool and expanding foam. No heavy foundation plantings, wood piles, compost heaps, etc... close to the house. That eliminates hiding places, and warm spots for them to sleep. He also planted marigolds, euphorbia, and sage around and in the garden and near doors and windows... he claimed they didn't like the scents. Last, but not least, he'd scatter ground cinnamon and cloves around. (Make sure you have door mats to wipe your shoes on so you don't track it in the house.) As an added bonus, cinnamon repels ants.

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    1. Wow, some great ideas. thank you for that. I'm definitely going to get the foam and steel wool. Love marigolds so that's a win win, ha. Good ideas all, thanks!

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  22. Yep got up for a drink of water one night,, stepped on a snake in the living room (no contacts in so I didnt see the darn thing, plus it was dark) oh ya that was just so much fun... I screamed DH came out of bedroom with gun.. snake flew past him into our bedroom...went under our bed.. then flew past him again to under the armoire... there he got it.. Honeyman is a excellent shot given half a second, he didnt miss or knick the tile floors :O)... ... I couldn't sleep for weeks was so worried one would just crawl into bed with us... and well if there was one I thought there could be more... I had snake traps inside the house for weeks after that! You could set a snake trap! You use a wire minnow catcher basket thing (sorry for that technical name) and a egg.. google snake trap minnow catcher... Snake goes in for egg but snake cannot get back out... I had two set inside for weeks.. I figured by then ok there must not be another one in here.. Would give you some peace of mind. If you can't find the directions on a search let me know I will hunt up a pic for ya.

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    1. OK I won't laugh at your misfortune but that is so crazy and I can just picture all of that happening. Snake trap huh? I bet it's on "the google", lol. I will check it out. thank you! And side note, if I shot at a snake on the floor, there would be numerous holes in the floor, a pipe spewing water, electrical flickering and a snake laughing as it slithers away. ;-)

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  23. I'm sorry, but it's either time to move or burn down the house. Shudder... I can barely deal with snakes outside, inside would be a deal breaker.

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    1. Hey, at least you're honest! Ha. That made me laugh out loud!!!

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  24. I've never had a snake in the house, but when I lived in Illinois we found them in the garage regularly. They were drawn to us by the mice. I think you should put the house up for sale.

    Love,
    Janie

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    1. LOL! Y'all are cracking me up!!! Two Men and a Little Farm and a Big Snake....

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  25. I'm sorry, but maybe it's time to try a different approach and make friends with it. LOL!!! I think I would borrow someones dog to see if it can sniff it out, if it's still in the house. I have been told by neighbours, who are born and bred country, that snakes like milk. They (the neighbours not the snakes) have told us before that if you dissolve an aspirin in milk, it will kill the snake.........if you want to go that way. Fingers crossed for you, glad it's you guys and not me!!!!!

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    1. Well, look at you, coming up with a let's get along option, ha. I guess there is the aspirin option, lol. No, I don't really want to kill it, and if it wants to hang out under the house, that's ok. We'll see if we can get along.

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  26. to my mind, the question isn't so much "where did it come from" as "where did it go"...better you than me!

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    1. That was my first thought when I realized that it was a snake skin. "Where the heck is it?". Definitely nerve-wracking...

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  27. One night I was walking down the hall and wondered what the cat was sitting there looking at. Glanced down just in time to see a snake slithering along the edge of the bookcase. By the time I got back with a broom it went under the bookcase. My husband was working a job out of state so I was left to tippy toe around the house for a couple of months always wondering where it was. I told myself he must have come in through a crack in the screen door as I had had the door open that afternoon. One evening my husband called me at work and told me the snake was gone. He said that he found him by the front door (where I think he came in). He threw him out. I told myself it was the same snake but asked him how did he know for sure it wasn't another one coming in. I haven't left the door open since. Yuk...There's a reason I'm waiting for the dead of winter before I clean out the attic! We have a pier and beam house too. The only time I weed my flowerbeds is in January and February when chances are slim that a snake will be lurking in the weeds. My favorite gardening months!

    Kathy in Sealy

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    1. Hey there! I know exactly where Sealy is. Have been there many times. Thanks for stopping by. Oh how I love Jan/Feb for gardening too. we can get SO much done can't we? I have a feeling we might have a harsh Winter there year though...I hope I'm wrong. Yeah I would think like you did, how do you KNOW it's the same snake? Ha. I never thought about snakes in the attic. Yikes! Thanks for stopping by!!

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  28. It is a little off-putting to find a large snake skin in the house, but I would rather have a non- poisonous snake in the house than one tiny mouse. I cannot abide rodent type critters. Even the tiniest mouse will turn me into a chair climbing EEKer.

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    1. While mice themselves don't bother me too much, I hate the mess they leave behind. Snakes at least "seem" clean, ha. But yeah, I'd rather just have a quiet animal/reptile free house, ha.

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  29. Well, I guess you have to take the bad with the good. This snake may have grown to four feet long by eating the mice that would otherwise be pooping and peeing all over your house. I'd rather not find evidence of a snake in my house - but I HATE having mice in my house! And I'd think the snake may have come inside just to shed it's skin in a quiet, safe place. Once people are around all the time, the snake will probably choose to stay outside. Hopefully it will still keep the mice out of your house though.

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    1. Ha I just mentioned above in the other reply about the mess mice make. Isn't it a pain? Ugh. We had them tearing up things, droppings, urine, ugh, it's a mess. I like the thought that the snake came in, did it's shedding and left and is now patrolling the area under the house outside....ha.

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  30. 1st Man,

    Be careful at night and early in the morning when walking around inside or outside your home. That's when snakes love to come out. Did by chance one of your cats bring the skin inside the house?

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    1. The cats don't go out with us when we're out there so it's not that. The skin definitely wasn't there the week before and then appeared. Scary! I didn't realize they came out early morning/evening, I'll remember that. Thanks!!

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