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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Polly wants a cracker... » » Snakes in Dove Cages (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

Bob Sanders
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Magic Valley Ranch, Clanton, Alabama
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If you keep your doves outdoors, this is the season when snakes like to hunt nights for eggs and birds. I've killed two within the last two weeks.

Look before you leap!

One of the disadvantages of Sweet Home Alabama is that we grow snakes like crazy. The recent weather problems have made the snake problem worse. Plus the nights are cooler and birds are warm!

Have any good recipes?

Bob
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Professor Piper
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I don't know your set-up, but if you'll put a perimeter, OUTSIDE the cage obviously, of Moth-Balls around the bottom of the Doves enclosure, that will help keep the snakes away...

Do NOT do this if you have children/dogs/cats that could get to the moth-balls.

Just an idea, it works for us...I put them on the OUTSIDE of my fence line (so the dogs cant' get to them) and it keeps the snakes away (We have a lot here in Missouri too...)...

I haven't seen a snake all year.

Prof. Piper
:juggle:

P.S. Fried Rattlesnake is delicious...Just bread it like you would chicken!!
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TomBoleware
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You can buy a product called “Snake Away,” you use it like you would the Moth-Balls, sprinkling it around the outside of the cage. Don’t know if it works, but it is on the market. I've seen it at Lowes.

I have placed “Deer Netting” around the cage. They get caught up in it. Of course then you have to deal with killing the hanging snake. Ohhh, I hate those things.

Tom
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hugmagic
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Or you could move to Ohio......

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Professor Piper
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Snake Away and Moth Balls are essentially the same thing (I think)...

The deer-netting is a good idea, if you don't mind messing with the snake...

Just BE CAREFUL...If you can't tell if it's a venomous snake or not DO NOT HANDLE it...

Better to be safe than sorry.

Prof. Piper
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TomBoleware
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Prof. Piper, I think you’re right, the main ingredient in the Snake Away is the same as Moth Balls. ( I think that’s what those big words on the label were. Lol)

Do you crush the moth balls up or just throw them out whole?

Tom
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Eric Buss
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Teach your doves some self-defense
TheAmbitiousCard
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Quote:
On 2005-10-04 14:22, Eric Buss wrote:
Teach your doves some self-defense


Eric, don't you sell "Snake Magnets"?
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Professor Piper
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Tom...

I just throw them out whole...

I basically made a line that runs parallel to the fence line with about 3' space between them....I have a BIG (6000 sq. ft.) back yard and it took a bunch of Moth Balls to do the job...But it works, so hey, it's worth it.


Image
Wish they were all this cute!

Prof. Piper
:juggle:
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TomBoleware
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Thanks Professor

Sounds great to me. Most likely that would be cheaper than the snake away, and much, much better than the netting.

Tom
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Professor Piper
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No problem Tom...

Like I said, it's been working for us...We live very close to Table Rock Lake (back door is like 75 yards away)....There are TONS of snakes down close to the water...Copperheads, Cotton Mouths (nasty snake, the Cotton Mouth), Rattlers, etc...Our neighbors have seen them up around their houses, but none have ventured near us...

And yes, Moth Balls are much cheaper than the packaged stuff.

Have a great night.

Prof. Piper
:juggle:
"Nemo has been found! He was on an Admiral's Platter at Red Lobster!"
Daktari
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Don't waste your money on the mothballs or Snake Away. It's the napthalene in both that works, but it doesn't work on most snakes. Essentially you have to have a certain amount of vapor per cubic ft of air space. If it works on the snakes then it is probably there in enough quantity that it could be unhealthy for your birds. I know this because I'm a wildlife biologist by trade and for years have been involved in animal damage control. One company I worked with spent close to $100,000 testing the various snake repellents, none of which performed very well. The rat snakes, of which are arboreal, eat birds and are found in many states (especially the South) are not affected much by the repellents.

Prof., the snake away will work on some of the species that you described. But keep in mind that the snakes are there for the food or cover. Eliminate that and the problem usually solves itself.
Professor Piper
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But that is the problem...

I really can't eliminate food source or available cover that would be appealing to a snake...(Surrounding land is not mine to clear)...So the Moth Balls were my best bet...

Now I have heard this from some local Farmer/Rancher types...If you want to go the Eco-Route to keep the snakes at bay (All types), buy a pig...These guys tell me that having a Pig around will keep the snakes away...(I don't know why).

Prof. Piper
"Nemo has been found! He was on an Admiral's Platter at Red Lobster!"
Bob Sanders
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Magic Valley Ranch, Clanton, Alabama
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Boy did I open a can of snakes!

My snakes do come from above (trees). And in Latin America I learned that one reason to keep pigs was snake control.

Perhaps I could change the act: Doves to Pig!

(Now to teach a pig to fly back and perch.)

Bob
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Sam Tabar
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What's with the pigs that make them good for snake control?
"Knowledge comes from finding the answers, but understanding what the answers mean is what brings wisdom." - Anonymous
Bob Sanders
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Magic Valley Ranch, Clanton, Alabama
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Quote:
On 2005-10-11 15:20, brianclementsvatua wrote:
What's with the pigs that make them good for snake control?


Wow! And I got this question from a Texan!

Pigs will hunt and eat snakes. (For a graphic, watch Lonesome Dove.)

Actually that is a very good and fair question. Most people today in the USA would have no idea that this is true. Pigs in the USA today are mostly raised on concrete. But it is still just as true. Snakes around pigs are in real trouble. (They will eat chickens too, if they can catch them.)

Now, about that ham sandwich?

Bob
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Sam Tabar
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Quote:
On 2005-10-11 16:55, Bob Sanders wrote:

Wow! And I got this question from a Texan!


Bob
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Thanks for the answer Bob. Actually, I'm not a native Texan. I've just been living here for 6 months.
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Autumn Morning Star
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Quote:
On 2005-10-05 23:13, Daktari wrote:
If it [mothballs] works on the snakes then it is probably there in enough quantity that it could be unhealthy for your birds.


I agree heartily. Birds breathe in a different way than people, concentrating oxygen (and/or toxins) in their blood.

The absolute best way to keep snakes out is to double wall your cage with 1/4" "hardware cloth" fencing. Just ask at the hardware store. It is pretty cheap and comes in rolls (work with gloves, it is sharp edged when you cut it). The hardware folks can show you how to attach it tightly against the cage with tiny "c" shaped rings that close with a special tool. Secure any opening into which snakes can slide. Remember, they can make themselves pretty flat, too.

I did my cage this way and was living in Memphis. Lots of snakes along the Mississippi River. Never had a single problem.

You can fix a pole with a hook to slide under the snake's middle and remove them from your patio. Or call your local animal control. Please don't kill them. They are an important part of our ecology. You may not like them, but they belong here.

Rat snakes are particularly beautiful and beneficial. I use them in my show along with doves (but never together). Maybe you should snag a baby rat snake and raise it to perform. They are very gentle and make wonderful pets. And they won't bark (or coo) and keep your neighbors awake Smile
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