Heavy Rain And Floods Forces Large Snake Out Onto Busy NoDa Street

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — A large Rat Snake is seen crossing East 36th St. in Charlotte’s NoDa neighborhood on Sunday, likely displaced from flash flooding caused by the torrential rain of Tropical Storm Florence.

Snakes are often discovered in unusual or exposed places after severe weather and flooding. Wild animals usually seek safety before a storm but flash floods and the removal of damaged trees can disturb their habitat forcing them out into the open. If you see a snake out in the open like this, it will probably move along as it looks for a more habitable environment.

Black snakes such as this one are non-venomous and help keep rats and mice away. However, should you come across a snake that is too close for comfort or doesn’t seem to be going anywhere, here’s what you can do:

Non-venomous snake: Wearing closed-toed shoes and some form of hand protection (like thick gardening gloves), take a long stick or trash grabber if you have one and coax the snake away from your home. If it’s small enough, you can guide it into a bucket or trash can with a lid so that you can safely move it.

Venomous snake: While you can relocate venomous snakes in a similar manner, you should not attempt to catch or move one without the proper equipment and know-how. Your best bet, in this case, is to call a professional company or simply leave it alone.

Chances are, the snakes that you’re seeing are just passing through and will be gone from your home in no time. And although they may not look that friendly, know this: they are not going to bother you unless they feel bothered! They are just trying to survive and thrive like all other living things and start to bite if they feel threatened.

Excerpts from “Give Snakes a Break” (blog.mecknc.gov/snakes/) were used to write this article. Visit that page to learn more about snakes in our area including how to identify if they’re venomous or not.

Video and photos courtesy of Corri Smith.