If there's anything we have plenty of in Alabama, that would be snakes. We have more than fifty different kinds of snakes, including about a dozen venomous ("poisonous") species.
The timber rattlesnake, shown in the picture on the right, is one of the venomous snakes found in Alabama. The others are the Eastern Coral Snake; the Northern and Southern Copperheads; the Eastern, Western, and Florida Cottonmouths; and the Eastern Diamondback, Canebrake, Dusky Pygmy, Carolina Pygmy, and Western Pygmy rattlesnakes.
That being said, most snakes in Alabama are harmless, and all of them are beneficial -- even the venomous ones. They do a great job keeping the rodent population down, for example. Rodents carry diseases and destroy crops, and therefore do a lot more harm to humans than snakes do. The venom of some snake species is also used to make medicines.
So all in all, snakes are beneficial animals that deserve to be respected and protected. They play an important role in the ecosystem.
The problem with snakes is that some of them are venomous, which makes them dangerous to have around our homes, schools, athletic fields, recreation areas, and other places where humans live, work, and play.
Snakes are not vicious animals. They don't bite people for the sheer joy of it, but they do take offense when we go and step on them, which is easy to do because they spend so much time slithering around on the ground. Snakes also will strike if a human accidentally puts their hand too close to them, which is also easy to do. For example, a child reaching into some tall grass to retrieve a ball might be bitten if there's a snake in the grass.
To make matters worse, many snake species have similar appearances, making it difficult for the untrained eye to tell them apart. Many innocent, harmless snakes have lost their lives because of mistaken identity: They happened to look like a venomous specie, so someone went ahead and lopped their heads off.
Even the completely harmless and enormously helpful garter snake, which is one of the best friends a gardener can have because they help keep the rodents away, is all too often killed by people who don't know any better and who believe that all snakes are dangerous.
Finally, there are some people who simply hate snakes or are terrified of them, and who don't care whether or not they're venomous. They don't want them on their property.
There are two very good reasons why you should call a professional if you have snakes on your property.
The first reason, as we've already mentioned, is that most snakes are harmless, and even venomous snakes are beneficial when in an environment where they don't present a threat to humans, pets, or livestock. A professional snake control expert will be able to properly identify "your" snakes to avoid unnecessarily harming a snake that's just trying to help you grow your garden. And if it is necessary to remove a snake, we know how to do it humanely.
The second reason is that handling snakes is dangerous for amateurs. As we mentioned earlier, a lot of snakes have similar enough markings and coloration that non-professionals may have a hard time telling them apart, which of course puts them in danger if they try to remove snakes themselves.
The long and short of it is that if you have a snake problem, you really need to call a professional who knows how to identify and handle snakes. The wildlife management specialists at Rid-A-Critter all receive special training in the biology, identification, and handling of snakes, so please contact us instead. Snake control is not a do-it-yourself sort of job.
Here are pictures of some of the snake removal jobs we've done in Birmingham and throughout the Metro Birmingham area and its suburbs.
For more information about snake removal or any of our wildlife management services, please call us today.