Mothballs As a Snake Repellent

Many old wives tales call for using moth balls to repel snakes from your house.

Considerations

Science, however, has proven that moth balls don't work.

When tested by the Extension Service at Mississippi State University, mothballs failed to repel snakes, and no chemical repellent was effective at all.

Warning

According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, moth balls contain the dangerous chemical napthelene. The EPA classifies napthalene as a possible human carcinogen. It is also associated with birth defects when pregnant mothers are exposed to it.

Potential

The best way to repel snakes is to make sure that you are not providing them a snake friendly habitat. Do not stack any material close to your house that snakes could hide in, and repair any holes in cement or the foundation of your house.

Barrier

Another effective means of controlling snakes is to bury sheet metal or hardware cloth 6 inches below the surface around the foundation of houses and storage sheds.

Misconceptions

While keeping snakes out of the house is important, remember that snakes play a beneficial role in the environment. Snakes eat rats and mice, and many non-venomous snakes eat venomous snakes.

About the Author

Sam Adams has been writing since 2009 for various websites, specializing in gardening, travel and green lifestyles. She graduated summa cum laude from Northeastern Illinois University in 2001 with a major in English and a minor in history.