I have a problem with black snakes (Rat snake) Elaphe
taking over a storage shed. Are there any known and available
repellents that will drive them out of my shed. I have had them
removed and released at distant locations but they or others
return. Any assistance you can provide would be apreciated.
Your shed is probably a nice, dry, protected place that the snakes love to
use for shedding their skins. We used to have an old car in a shed out in
the woods, and the snakes loved to shed their skins in the engine. They
liked the place so much I grew to suspect that that was why the building
was called a "shed." Anyway, the only way I can think of to keep snakes
out of a wonderful place like that would be to have it sealed up so well
that they couldn't get in. That's probably not possible to do, given how
most sheds are constructed.
On the other hand, the snakes probably do a good job controlling the rodent
population. So be careful that you don't bring upon yourself a worse
problem by eliminating another.
Richard Barrans Jr., Ph.D.
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Update: June 2012