Rural-Metro says rattlesnake calls increasing

Rural-Metro says rattlesnake calls increasing
As fall approaches, reports of rattlesnake sightings increases. (Source: Vicki Karr)

TUCSON, AZ (Tucson News Now) - The Rural-Metro Fire Department says rattlesnakes are starting to become more active as temperatures begin to drop.

Battalion Chief John Walka says calls typically pick up around this time as we approach winter.

“Toward the month of October, we see an influx of snakes, especially baby rattlesnakes,” he said.

Walka says baby rattlesnakes are especially active after being born at the end of summer and beginning life on their own.

"Rattlesnakes are not family-oriented animals. Once they are born, they’re basically on their own. They don’t have anybody to teach them anything. They just basically do everything by instinct, and that includes finding their winter home,” he said.

Rattlesnakes on the move

Walka says people can avoid a trip to the emergency room by being alert and knowledgeable about snakes' movement throughout the year.

He said as they search for their winter hideaway, rattlesnakes can sometimes try to move in with you. Walka said some common places where snakes are found include doorways, garages, sheds and piles of debris.

He urges people to remove those hideaways by clearing debris and filling in any gaps they could sneak in through along with keeping your garage door closed when possible.

Walka says many times rattlesnakes will stop by your home and move on. However, if you have one that overstays its visit – call pest control or the fire department to have it removed.

If a rattlesnake bites you, seek immediate medical help.

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