Environment SA News

Be on the lookout for snakes this spring

Spring brings out snakes, so gardeners are being reminded to look out during their spring clean-ups.

Be on the lookout for snakes this spring
Spring is here, and that means snakes are coming out of hibernation and on the move.

Snakes hibernate throughout the colder months and become active again in spring when temperatures start to rise.

Department for Environment and Water Animal Welfare Manager Dr Deb Kelly said there are snakes all over South Australia, including metropolitan Adelaide.

“Just because you’ve never seen a snake on your property doesn’t mean they aren’t there, so you should always be careful about putting your hands or feet into spots you can’t see, like long grass or that pile of junk behind the shed,” Dr Kelly said.

“You’ll see snakes in the suburbs, and even at the beach – sand dunes are prime snake habitat.

“Eastern browns are one of the most venomous species and they’re widespread across the state, but every area has its local specialty when it comes to venomous snakes.”

Dr Kelly said the best way to discourage snakes from around the home is to keep yards tidy all year round.

Snakes are protected native animals, and they have an important part to play in the ecosystem, especially in helping to control rats and mice.

What to do if you see a snake

  • Keep well away.
  • Don’t try to catch or kill it yourself. This is when most bites happen.
  • If you see a snake inside, watch where it goes, keep children and pets away, then call a snake catcher to remove it.
  • If the snake is outside and heading towards bushland or a field, leave it alone. Most snakes are not aggressive and won’t chase you.
  • If a person is bitten, call 000. Wrap a pressure bandage tightly over the area of the bite, then use a second bandage and splints to immobilise the limb. Keep the person calm and still until you can get medical help.

For more information on how to maintain your property to reduce the likelihood of attracting snakes, visit http://www.environment.sa.gov.au/Plants_and_Animals/Living_with_wildlife/Snakes.