In an effort to protect the public, the Orange County Fire Authority is reminding Aliso Viejo residents to use caution this spring and summer during snake season.
“Residents can expect to see more snakes out and about, particularly in the Aliso and Wood Canyons Wilderness Park as well in other open areas, thanks to an active rainy season,” said OCFA Division Chief Jeff Adams.
Snake season is typically from March to October. Here are some steps to discourage snake activity around your home:
* Fill up gopher and squirrel holes with stones and dirt. Snakes use those as passageways and will be deterred away from property if the route is closed.
* Snakes like to move through areas where they are not easily detected. Clear any shrubs, broken branches or overgrown bushes surrounding your property.
* When clearing concealed areas such as ivy, lawns and untrimmed shrubbery, poke ahead with a long stick. If there’s a snake, it will either attack the stick or glide away quickly. The desire to avoid direct contact is mutual.
Most snakes encountered are non-venomous, while the rattlesnake is the only venomous snake native to California. Observing the shape of the snake’s head, body and tail is a good way to determine if a snake is venomous. Regardless, never try to touch or pet any type of snake.
If you’ve encountered a rattlesnake on your property or public area, call the Mission Viejo Animal Services Center, which serves Aliso Viejo, at 949-470-3045.