Buderim: One of Snake Hotspots in Sunshine Coast

Sunshine Coast has been reported the most number of snake bites in the last 12 months from November 2017. Data revealed that Buderim is one of the snake hotspots in the area.

With the onset of warmer weather, the incidence of snake bites from venomous snakes trying to escape the heat is on the rise. Data from Queensland Ambulance Services recorded around 790 snake bite reports since November 2017; so far, 100 were from Sunshine Coast. Snake catching experts, on the other hand, named Buderim as the top hot spot for snakes in Sunshine Coast.

Apart from extreme weather, experts also believe that developments that disturb the natural habitat of the snakes are also contributing to the rising incidence of snake encounters. QAS snake bites statistics showed that over 150 cases have been reported in the Metro North and Metro South compared to the North West and Southwest combined total of about 15 incidence.

What to Do When You Encounter a Snake in Your House?

  • Close the internal doors in the house and open the external doors and windows.
  • Block the gaps underneath internal doors with rolled up towels.
  • Place chairs and boxes under windows to make it easier for snakes to climb out.
  • Keep everyone well clear of the snake.
  • If the snake is in a place away from electricity and valuable items, try directing a gentle jet of water from the garden hose or squirt bottle towards the snake to encourage it to move away.
  • Remember that snakes on the move will naturally try to find shelter, so hosing the snake may not always work.
  • When you encounter a snake outside, don’t panic, back away to a safe distance, and allow it to move away.

“Snakes found on your premises can be removed and relocated by snake catchers authorised under the Nature Conservation Act 1992. Contact details of local snake catchers can be obtained through the Yellow Pages or via the internet. It is important to remember that snakes are an important part of the environment and the relocated snake is often replaced by another living nearby. The best approach is to snake-proof your house,” the website said.

Here are the top 5 things you need to do if you get bitten by a snake according to Queensland Health:

  • Call an ambulance immediately – Call Triple Zero (000) and ask for an ambulance, or use the Emergency+ app to call an ambulance.
  • Don’t panic and don’t move – Not moving and staying calm can help slow down the spread of venom.
  • Leave the snake alone.
  • Apply a pressure immobilisation bandage and splint.
  • Don’t wash, suck, cut or tourniquet the bite – don’t wash the bite site as hospital staff may need to use the venom to identify the snake that bit you.
Treating snake bites

Video Credit:Queensland Ambulance Service (QAS) / Facebook

How Do You Snake-proof Your House and Your Yard?

  • Block holes in your rock wall or other structure that can be potential dwellings of house frogs and rats, that attract snakes.
  • Keep your yard and shed tidy and well-maintained.
  • Keep shrubs and gardens tidy and away from the house. Snakes will shelter in houses, under shrubs and in timber stacks to avoid the hottest parts of the day.
  • Ensure that food scraps are disposed of properly to discourage rats and mice.
  • Bird owners should also discourage rodents by ensuring that aviaries are kept clean and hygienic and that the mesh is small enough to keep snakes from entering.
  • Install screens on doors and windows. Block any holes around the house including those between the roof and ceiling.

By blocking off all potential access points, you limit the chance of snakes entering your house. Residents are also advised to take extra care during summer as snakes are most active during this time. Also, extra precautions should be taken when in an area that experiences flooding, as flooding will cause snakes to seek higher ground.

For more information about snakes, you may visit the Queensland Government website.