Residential Customers

Snakes

Rentokil South Africa does not cover snakes as part of our service package; however you may find the information and advice below regarding snakes useful.

Protecting you and your family from Snakes and Snake bites

Snakes – and the risk of snake bites – are a real threat to people living in South Africa even though relatively few of the 150 species of snakes are venomous snakes.

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Most snakes are extremely timid creatures and are only likely to attack if cornered or provoked as attack is, in most instances, simply a form of defense.

The required treatment for snake bites varies from species to species and being able to identify the species of snake that has bitten someone is an important part of the procedure. 

You can learn more about some of South Africa’s more common snakes in our Pest Guides section. 

How to avoid snake bites: Be aware of the dangers posed by snakes

Snake bites caused by accidentally stepping on to a snake, especially if you are out walking in grassland or the bush, are nearly impossible to predict or prevent but by taking a few simple but sensible precautions you can reduce the risk of snake bites:

  • When walking around make plenty of noise to advertise your presence which will most likely keep snakes away.
  • Wear strong boots or shoes and long trousers when walking in grassland.
  • NEVER walk about barefoot, especially at night!Avoid long grass and stick to paths and tracks as much as possible to avoid snake bites.
  • Use a long stick to ‘probe’ the ground ahead of you; be aware that snakes can ‘play dead’ so do not attempt to touch a snake that appears dead.
  • Walk in single file through long grass or bushes.
  • Climb on to large rocks or logs in the pathway and step off them on to clear ground; these are favourite haunts for snakes
  • Watch where you put your hands and NEVER put them down a hole, as this can lead to snake bites, perhaps even venomous snake bites.
  • Do not attempt to catch, corner or kill a snake.
  • Use a mosquito net at night and tuck it in tightly.
  • Never sleep on the ground, unless you have a tent with an attached and built in ground sheet.
  • Always use a torch to light the ground ahead of you at night to keep snakes away to avoid snake bites.
  • If you see a snake stand absolutely still and then slowly back away; remember that many snakes can strike up to half their length.
  • When entering garages, sheds, storerooms and other outbuildings, open the door, light the internal area and visually check for snakes remembering that you will, in all likelihood, be blocking their exit and that this is when they can attack in defense.

Talk to the experts

Whilst Rentokil does not offer a service to remove snakes, we can provide further advice on how to minimise the risk of garden snakes and snake bites, or put you in touch with someone who will be able to assist with snake removal.

Call us free on 0800 117 852.

 

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