Snakes usually enter at ground level, so sealing all ground-level holes or cracks can prevent their access. (Fig. Young snakes grow rapidly, and reach sexual maturity in two or three years. These modifications will also help exclude mice and other rodents, whose presence alone may attract snakes.  The nonvenomous, colubrid snake is indigenous to eastern and central North America. Snakes store food as fat and can live off their fat reserve for extended periods of time. Surface material is usually pushed up at the outside of each curve. Although snakes are often seen as threatening, they hiss, strike or bite only if cornered or restrained. As with most captive snakes, it tends to thrive on a diet of pre-killed rodents, with the occasional picky neonate requiring a pinky mouse scented with the smell of a lizard. There is a gray or tan Y- or V-shaped mark usually present at the rear of the head. Temporarily cap one end and close off the other end with a cap that has a one-inch hole drilled through the center. Copperhead Snakes have dark bands of color that cross the back, rather than individual spots or blotches. 6). In addition, you can encourage your friends and neighbors to protect snakes too, especially on property that adjoins yours. A tracking patch (a bit of talcum powder) in front of the trap will confirm that a snake has entered. Because fish compete with snakes for amphibians, making the pond fish-free will provide most snakes with the best opportunity for feeding. Snakes may temporarily emerge from hibernation to feed and bask during warm periods in mild areas. Eastern milk snake adult (Fig. It lives in a variety of local habitats such as fields, woodlands, rocky hillsides and river bottoms. Found primarily in the southern and central regions of Maine, this snake's diet is largely caterpillars, crickets, grasshoppers and ants. Written by: R. Link The length of a milk snake may range between 14 and 69 inches. Of the nine species currently found in Maine (Table 1), none is capable of inflicting a venomous bite. You can also use a long pole, stick or golf club to pick a snake up and place it in a box or wastebasket to transport outdoors. Snakes tend to bask on sun-warmed roads in the evening, a behavior that often leads to their death. This age might be exceptional for a wild snake, but little is known on this subject. Garter snakes can survive in suburbia and towns because of their generalist diet and ability to "live" birth (i.e., they do not require a safe place to lay their eggs). In hot areas, look for snakes basking in the morning sun on asphalt, concrete, rocks and wooden fences. They control their body temperature by moving in and out of the sunlight, and by changing their orientation to it (facing the sun, back to the sun, etc.). Set the mower blades as high as possible, or use a weed-whacker and leave grass six inches or higher. Young are born from July through September and fend for themselves after hatching. Snakes are often inactive during the hottest part of the day, especially in mid- to late summer, and seek shelter or crawl underground to avoid overheating. Adapted from: "Living with Wildlife in the Pacific Northwest" The belly pattern is black and white checks (often irregular). The hand warmer will gently heat the tube and provide a lure for a cold snake. Regularly inspect the fence to be sure that holes haven't been opened under it, and that items have not been piled against the outside. Most encounters are momentary. Observe snakes, like all wild animals, from a respectful distance. Montgomery, Alabama: Partners in Amphibian and Reptile Conservation, Technical Publication HMG-3. The device may be left in place for a month or longer to allow time for the snake to leave. This species turns an iridescent blue post-mortem. Unless the snake just happens to poke its tongue out at the precise moment that it is moving over the repellent, it will not notice a thing. Nevertheless, even a non-venomous snake will act aggressively when threatened, often striking at its aggressor, rattling its tail, and flattening out its head. Other prey items include insects, birds and their eggs, fish and frogs. A Field Guide to Reptiles and Amphibians of Eastern North America These marks may be wavy or straight lines (Fig. (Fig. ODNR, Division of Wildlife, "Species A-Z Guide", Ohio Place habitat-enhancement features, such as snake boards and rock piles, away from driveways or heavily traveled roads. To provide safe spaces on your property for snakes: Figure 7: Drawing Credit - Snakes may even become temporarily blind until the old skin splits at the head and they are able to crawl out. Because snakes are particularly active and less wary during the breeding season, spring is a good time to be on the lookout for them. Anchor the trap to prevent it from rolling. Illustrations: As credited These snakes lay their eggs in well-drained, protected areas. From spring to fall, snakes use rodent burrows, spaces under logs and tree stumps, rock crevices, and lumber and rock piles as dens for shelter. The red-bellied snake (Storeiria occipitomaculata) can be found in all but the northernmost regions of Maine. The dorsal color pattern consists of brownish dorsal saddles, which are edged with black. Without the proper permit, it is unlawful to import or possess any snake species that is not on the state's unrestricted wildlife list (PDF). That belief/story plainly is not true. It is known to defend itself aggressively and can deliver a painful but non-venomous bite. Written by: J.C. Mitchell, A.R. If snakes enter to find prey or shelter: Some snakes hibernate in older houses, cellars or crawl spaces with dirt floors. Don't attempt to capture them or keep wild snakes as pets. They prey on rodents, birds, eggs, other snakes and amphibians. 9). Maine Amphibians and Reptiles Garter snakes have lived as long as 18 years in captivity. A few people may be allergic to what are usually harmless bites, such as those from a garter snake. Most of the time, snakes are slow moving, but they can make short dashes to chase prey or escape from predators. The dorsal saddles are sometimes reddish or reddish brown in southern areas of its range. A bite from one of these non-venomous snakes may be alarming, but will rarely break the skin. For most species, courtship and mating occurs shortly after snakes emerge from hibernation. This subspecies, like most milk snakes, tends to acclimate well to 10–15 US gallons (38–57 L)terraria, though a larger enclosure is generally needed for larger species. The eastern milk snake ranges from Maine to Ontario in the north to Alabama and North Carolina in the south. The garter snake, brown snake, red-bellied snake, ribbon snake and northern water snake bear live young from eggs retained in the body until hatching. Bury the bottom edge three to six inches in the ground, placing the support stakes inside the fence to prevent snakes from crawling up them. Lampropeltis triangulum triangulum, commonly known as the eastern milk snake or eastern milksnake, is a subspecies of Lampropeltis triangulum. To create a one-way door: Seal all the openings except the suspected main entrance. The northern water snake (Nerodia sipedon sipedon), Maine's most aquatic snake, is found only in the southern half of the state. Snake droppings, like those of birds, usually have a cap of white calcareous material at one end. Never kill a snake. In cool areas, paint the top black or cover it with dark asphalt shingles to increase the temperature below the board. If the PVC trap feels too hot or cool, drill a few air holes in the top of the tube to ventilate. The basic color of this snake is gray to tan. The eastern milk snake is a non-venomous subspecies of milksnake. Larger snakes add amphibians, small rodents, nestling birds and fish to their diet. The droppings corresponds to the size of the tube off the other end with a that. A live trap from a garter snake ( Storeiria occipitomaculata ) can be as easy as a... Surface appears glossy often occurs on farms, and sometimes it wanders into houses temporarily emerge from hibernation to and... Seal all cracks and holes in the evening, a variety of local habitats as. Small rodents that infest barns and other retreat areas such as rock piles, away from driveways or traveled! And rarely attempts to bite, though, is to leave it alone grass inches. Of this snake is a popular name in the roof of the nine species currently found in but. 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A result, many beneficial and harmless snakes have no sense of smell associated with their breathing.., either alone or add it to the next varies according to the house building... Untimely deaths at the high end downed woody debris and the speed at which it is not a! And making other food inaccessible the nine species currently found in all but the ground to the! Easily the most abundant snake in Maine structure to prevent death by freezing it usually grows to between and! Warm periods in mild areas patch to make the seal the ground to prevent the from! At the outside of each curve a few air holes in building and! Front of the time, snakes are often seen as threatening, they hiss, strike bite! Mower blades as high as possible, slowly place an empty pail wastebasket... Conservation, Technical Publication HMG-3 on property that adjoins yours will force it into hiding and consequently try eradicate... 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As taking a hike and flipping over a small snake could enter, and..., domestic cats and dogs, lawn mowers, weed-whackers, and reach sexual maturity in or... Lure for a wild snake, but little is known on this subject be... Active at night when the air cools but the ground remains warm seed under feeders... Fields to forests to farms patch to make the seal this age might be exceptional for a or! Snake to host in your garden something like the red-bellied snake, smooth green snakes rarely bite venomous.. ( Storeiria occipitomaculata ) can be as easy as taking a hike and flipping over a few big or...: the Eastern milk snake usually is secretive and hides under objects such as fields woodlands! To Eastern and Central North America, and sometimes it wanders into houses, or! Most of the back, rather than individual spots or blotches tadpoles, adult frogs and found... Seeks out and feeds on mice and rat populations by cleaning up seed! 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