After finding a few snake skins in their roof, Queensland homeowners thought it would be best to have a snake catcher on hand while they had the insulation cleaned – and it's a good thing they did.
For the safety of workers and any potential snakes, Stuart McKenzie from Sunshine Coast Snake Catchers 24/7 came to oversee the cleaning process a few months back.
Stuart told Yahoo News Australia the insulation in this particular home was pretty "old school", and was basically just powder that covered the roof.
The Sunshine Coast Snake Catchers 24/7 had been to that house just a few weeks before the cleaning happened, and they removed and relocated a snake from the property.
While the cleaning process was underway, more than 50 snakeskins were found inside the roof, which Stuart said was not common, though finding five or so skins would be more the norm.
"Honestly, it was an older roof," he told Yahoo News Australia.
"The house has been there for years, it's probably a 30-year-old house. You know, skins are made out of keratin and they'll potentially take years to break down ."
He said a python or a tree snake might shed its skin multiple times a year.
"If a snake liked it up there [in a roof] and it stuck around a while then it can potentially drop off six to 10 skins in a year," he explained.
"And that quickly adds up if you've got multiple snakes in a roof space."
While in the roof, Stuart managed to capture a Brown Tree Snake that was hidden among the insulation.
The snake was healthy and was released — though it may have been a little confused in the daylight, given the species is nocturnal.
Snakes hiding in a roof isn't too bad
While the thought of having a snake up in your roof might be a little unsettling, Stuart said it actually wasn't all bad.
Snakes will usually eat all the rodents up in the roof and most often, people won't even know they're up there.
A few years ago, Stuart was called to a job where a woman had a snake in her roof.
She only knew there was one up there after she saw a baby tree snake poke its head out of a light fixture.
Stuart pulled out "well over 100" snake skins from her roof and strangely, only one snake was found in there.
Stuart said residents are most likely to hear snakes in their roof during breeding season.
"Because it's quite a common place for males snakes to be fighting and that sort of thing and you hear the ruckus up there."
If you think there might be a snake in your roof, Stuart suggests checking to see if there are any holes or cracks it could use to get into your home and seek the help of a snake catcher if concerned.
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