Most snakes are diurnal though they can be active on warm evenings. They tend to be most active in areas with large amounts of their favorite prey – mice and rats.


  • Any that were attacked by another animal, especially a cat.
  • Any that were hit by a car or moving equipment.
  • Any that are caught in garden netting if you are unable to safely remove it and/or it has visible injuries. If you are able to successfully remove the snake from the netting and there are not visible injuries, you may release it yourself.


  • Any that have clouded-over eyes (appear to have cataracts). Snakes actually shed the outer layer of their eyes when they go through a full-body molt. They may seem more ornery than usual as their eyesight is limited during this brief time.
  • Any uninjured, newly-hatched snakes. They are independent from hatching and do not need assistance.


  • You may want to consider wearing gloves during handling as snakes excrete a strong-smelling musk when agitated. Plus, reptiles can carry strains of Salmonella.
  • Consider placing the snake inside an old pillowcase and tie off the open end as snakes can worm their way out of most traditional carrying containers.

See Transporting Wildlife. Keep it warm and quiet.