North Carolina is home to over 40 types of snakes, with a total of 6 species that are considered poisonous. Depending on where you live in North Carolina will determine how many poisonous snakes live in your particular area. In my area for example we have 4 types, the Timber Rattler, The pygmy Rattler, The cotton mouth snake and the copperhead snake. If you live in an area such as I do, that is a perfect habitat creating a large rattler and poisonous snake population there are certain things you can do to help cut down on their visits to your yard.
It is said that snakes do not like the smell of really strong odors so a natural spray of a garlic with water mixture is supposedly a snake deterrent. I personally have not tried this one yet but look forward to trying it and seeing if it works. The problem with this is it needs to be repeated either once a month or after any rain. Anyone living in North Carolina knows there are periods where you are getting rain almost daily. However if you live in other more arid areas this may be worthy of trying.
Make sure you do not have a lot of plant growth up around your dwelling place as this creates nice shady hiding areas for snakes to escape the heat. If you garden, make sure the garden area or flower beds are well away from the house. This helps keep black widow spider populations down around the living quarters as well! When you work in the garden, be cautious, wear gloves and carefully push leaves aside so you can see where you are reaching.
Remove any brush piles in the yard, snakes absolutely love brush piles so by removing them you are helping take away attractive areas for snakes. Also if you keep compost pile, make sure it is contained in a way snakes can not get to. Compost piles attract snakes who like to hide in the leaves and debris.
Keep the grass in your yard mowed and short making it less attractive to snakes and easier for you to see a snake. Most snake bites happen due to people practically stepping on snakes as they can not see them. Watching where you step goes a long ways to preventing unwanted snake bites.
Store any grains you may have in air tight containers, this goes for livestock feed or grains in the house that would attract mice. Keep mouse traps around or D-con if you have a mouse population and keep garbage taken care of at all times. Where there is an ample rodent population, you will find snakes as rodents make up a large part of a snakes diet!
Do not leave boards or tarps laying around in the grass as these create well sought out hiding places for snakes. This goes for rock piles too; it may not be such a great idea to have a rock garden in a high poisonous snake area! If you have a rock pile, remove it immediately being careful there are no snakes already lurking there. Snakes will hide in the rock pile for its shaded areas during the heat of the day. They will be attracted to the rock pile in the cooler evening hours when they need to warm themselves on the heated rocks.
Taking away things in your yard that create a desired habitat for the snakes will go a long ways in cutting down the amount you see in your yard. They like dark hiding places so taking away the things that create dark hiding places as well as their food sources such as mice should help cut down on their population in your yard. You want to be able to enjoy going out of doors so just taking these simple steps will help you to do that. I would love to hear how others deal with large rattler snake and other poisonous snake populations! So leave your comments on what has worked for you!