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Rattlesnake safety tips

Post Date:03/27/2019 8:37 am

Spring in Arizona is the perfect time to enjoy the beautiful weather and outdoor activities. The l desert also holds some hidden dangers that you may encounter along the way, including bike/walking paths, hiking trails and even around your home.   Coiled Rattlesnake in desert

March through October is considered rattlesnake season in Arizona, and knowing how to avoid a dangerous rattlesnake encounter for both you and your pets, and what to do if you do get bit, can be the difference between life and death.

Hiking Safety

  • Keep your eyes open for rattlesnakes basking in the sun, especially in the cooler months
  • While hiking in the late afternoon or evening, remember to bring a flashlight to guide your way after the sun goes down
    • Rattlesnakes are typically more active at night during the hot summer months
  • Always keep your pets on a leash while hiking
  • Pay attention to where you’re walking and placing your hands
  • Listen for their “rattle” warning
  • Don’t reach into bushes, holes or areas you can’t see

Home Safety

  • Eliminate rodents from your property, since they are a major food source for all types of snakes
  • Cover drainage holes with a ¼-inch hardwire screen
  • Perimeter walls and fences around your property should be solid, a minimum of four-feet high, with no holes or areas for them to tunnel underneath

If a rattlesnake bites you:

  • Call 9-1-1 and seek medical assistance immediately
  • Remain calm and decrease movement, if possible
  • Remove all jewelry from the affected area
  • Immobilize the bite area and keep it below your heart
  • NEVER apply ice, cut the bite area, use a tourniquet or administer drugs or alcohol

You can download a rattlesnake fact sheet from the Arizona Game and Fish department website.

 If you encounter a rattlesnake on your property, please contact 9-1-1.

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