Banded Sand Snake Removal (Chilomeniscus cinctus)
Believe it or not, banded sand snakes can be great to have around. After all, they love to eat insects! And despite their startling appearance, banded sand snakes are harmless to humans. Here’s what you need to know when dealing with a possible banded sand snake on your property.
Banded Sand Snake ID and Habits
Banded sand snakes are small, seven to ten inches long. Their basic colors are white, pale yellow, or red, sometimes with orange saddle shaped blotches on the back. They have a narrow head – no wider than their body – and a wedge-shaped snout.
You’ll come across this snake in southwestern and south-central Arizona in the US. some of the locations that have these snakes are Phoenix Snake Removal, Tucson snake removal and all other areas of Arizona. It lives in arid regions, in open desert and arroyos with loose soil. Fortunately for us, banded sand snakes feast upon centipedes, cockroaches, insects in general, and ant larvae and pupae. They are nocturnal.
Banded sand snakes are highly adapted to a life burrowing in sand and can literally swim in it. Aboveground, they leave behind s-shaped furrows in the sand.
Banded Sand Snake Control
If you’re ever bitten by a banded sand snake, make sure to get it checked out. Banded sand snakes are not venomous, but with any wild animal bite there’s a risk of infection.
After identification of the culprit, there are several steps to dealing with snake problems: making your property less inviting to snakes (habitat modification); dealing with any snakes that are already there; and preventing more snakes from entering your home or building (exclusion).
Banded Sand Snake Habitat Modification
In settings where these snakes are common, their presence can be discouraged by eliminating piles of rock, lumber, and debris that might attract banded sand snakes to search for prey or to seek shelter – especially close to buildings. Since they’re burrowers, the closing of all entrances to rodent burrows make an area less attractive to snakes. Clean up all debris in the yard and storage areas. Store firewood at least 18 inches above the ground and 12 inches away from walls. Eliminate standing water and fix leaky faucets; this will discourage the presence of some of the insects that sand snakes hunt.
Banded Sand Snake Exclusion
Follow these steps to keep banded sand snakes out of homes and other buildings:
Conduct a thorough search for cracks in the foundation, unscreened crawlspace vents and gaps around basement window frames.
Structural gaps and crevices larger than 1/4 inch and within three feet of grade should be closed off – snakes can pass through very small openings.
Crawlspace vents should not have screens with larger than 1/4 inch mesh.
Check clearance under doors, and look for improper sealing where plumbing and utility lines, wires or cables penetrate the foundation of the building.
Repair or replace damaged ventilation screen around the foundation and under eaves.
Provide a tight fitting cover for the crawl space.
Make sure all exterior doors are tight fitting and weatherproofed at the bottom.
Seal gaps beneath garage doors with a gasket or weatherstripping.
Install self-closing exits or screening to clothes dryer vents to the outside.
Remember that pet doors into the house or garage provide an easy entrance for pest animals.
Keep side doors to the garage closed, especially at night.
Keep lids on garbage cans.
Banded Sand Snake Removal
If you’re confident that you do indeed have a banded sand snake in your house, and you want to deal with it yourself, try this: place a trashcan on the side of the snake, and use a broom or a similar tool to gently sweep it inside the trashcan. Relocate it well away from residential areas, and seal up any openings in your house where it can get back in.
If you have any doubt about which kind of snake you have, or if you suspect several, a call to a snake removal or pest control company is warranted. If you have unwanted wildlife in or near your home, you can find a wildlife removal company here.