Snakes slithering into neighborhoods across Hampton Roads

10 On Your Side
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HAMPTON ROADS, Va. (WAVY) — Now that it’s warmer out, you may see snakes more often.

Wildlife experts say that snakes can also be found in odd places around your home.

Brian Fiske with ACME Animal Control says he originally got a call that there were birds nesting in a Chesapeake home’s bathroom vent, but then he took a look inside. 

“So upon inspection, when we went to see how much nesting material as far as cleaning it out, we saw a 5-foot black rat snake curled up,” said Fiske.

He said finding snakes in vents in a home can happen more often around this time, for a few reasons.

“This time of year, with it being baby season, rabbits, squirrels, birds, everything’s having babies,” he said.

He says it’s warmer, so snakes are out looking for food.

In the most recent case in Chesapeake, the snake smelled the birds in a bathroom vent.

“They smell the feces from the bird flying in and out of that vent,” he said. “When he sticks out that tongue, that’s actually how they smell, they pick up that scent, they see the birds flying out and they can actually crawl up the side of the brick.”

If you’re wondering how a snake can climb up the wall of a home, Fiske has the answer.

“The scales on the bottom here are designed to grip and climb, so they go right in an “s” patterns and climb up the brick, or they’ll go on a tree branch that’s close and reach over and get in,” he said.

So what should you do if you if you think a snake is in or near your home? 

Fiske says there are a few options.

If you think you see a venomous snake, like a rattlesnake, call a wildlife expert immediately. If there’s a snake that you can’t identify, you can take a picture and send it in to a wildlife expert like Fiske, and they can tell you what kind of snake it is.

From there, they can remove it from the home.

But Fiske says one thing you shouldn’t do is kill them.

“In the state of Virginia it’s actually illegal to indiscriminately kill a snake,” Fiske said. 

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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