The Good and Bad of Snakes on the Homestead

How do you feel about snakes? Many people have a fear of snakes, and for some people, it goes beyond just a healthy respect for the creatures and turns into full-blown hysterical fear. So, what should you do if you happen to see snakes on the farm or around your homestead? Are they good or are they bad? As you will find with most things in life, there are good and bad elements to them, but in most cases, they tend to provide some benefits to the homesteader.

The Pros and Cons

If you see a nonvenomous snake on your property, it doesn’t mean you need to pick up and move! Many types of snakes tend to eat rodents, and some will also eat other snakes. Certain species may also eat birds and eggs, which means you will want to make sure your chickens are fully protected. Since most of the snakes have a diet of rodents, they can help to keep your stores and your crops safe from those pesky little critters.

If you do not know much about snakes, it is a good idea to look up the species commonly found in your area, and learn to identify them. When you see a snake, and are not sure of the species, do not approach it. Take a picture and ask someone what type it is. You will find that the nonvenomous snakes tend to be more of a boon than a problem, and you might just want to let them be.

Of course, if you have venomous snakes, such as water moccasins and rattlesnakes, that are on your property, you need to take steps to have them removed. You do not want them to injure or kill your livestock, or you! The other snakes though, the non-venomous variety, can be a bonus. So long as they aren’t inside your home, you should not have any problems. Give them their space, and they will give you yours. Always be careful.

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