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Rattlesnake Season Hits Murrieta

Rattlesnakes pose a danger to pets, and on rare occasions, serious injury to humans.

Beware: the snakes are out in Murrieta.

Snake season typically begins when the weather starts to warm up, according to Murrieta fire Chief Matt Shobert. He said the department has already begun getting calls from homeowners who have been paid visits by the reptiles.

"We have relocated about six rattlesnakes so far this season," Shobert told Patch Friday. "We have the tools, that is one of the services we are happy to provide."

Calls the Fire Department has responded to have been at private homes—in backyards, he said.

"People don't realize 10 years ago most of these tract homes weren't here," Shobert said.

Once caught by firefighters, Shobert said crews relocate them to within one-fourth mile of where they were found.

"That is our goal. Their chances of survival decrease if taken farther than that," he said.

He advised folks not to "mess" with snakes because that is when they may bite. Instead they should call 911, he said.

Snakes can also pose a danger to pets. All Creatures Animal Hospital of Murrieta can vouch for several pets recently bitten.

"Rattlesnakes are very dangerous and very common to our area," said, in an emailed statement to Patch.

"They’re out everywhere right now, even in the most manicured suburban tract home yards. (We) have treated three pets in the past two weeks alone. One pet was bit three times. Luckily, the owner rushed their pet to our hospital within 15 minutes of getting bit."

A photo of a dog treated by All Creatures can be seen here.

All Creatures advised pet owners to seek immediate attention if they suspect their pet has been bitten. They advised against pet owners attempting to treat bites themselves.

Murrieta resident Lisa Daniels, who lives near Murrieta Valley High School, said two of her dogs were bitten by snakes last year, and Friday, three were bit.

Daniels said according to her veterinarian, the bites were indicative of a Southern Pacific Rattlesnake. The dogs were treated immediately and she said "all are doing fine so far."

Southern Pacific Rattlesnakes are native to much of Southern California, including Riverside County, according to CaliforniaHerps.com, and are an important part of the ecosystem.

To learn more about other types of native rattlesnakes and tips for safety, visit the California Department of Fish and Game website at Dfg.ca.gov.

Shobert warned residents to "be careful, look where you are walking and wear proper shoes—because they're out."

Galactic Cannibal May 05, 2012 at 02:43 PM
"Southern Pacific Rattlesnakes are native to much of Southern California, including Riverside County, according to CaliforniaHerps.com, and are an important part of the ecosystem." OH yeh !!! tell that to St. Patrick. That dude got rid of snakes in Ireland. And it seems they crossed the Atlantic and come to Washington D.C. Then on to California. I say find the bones of St. Patrick and cone the Dude. Put him to work on our snakes. I hate bloody snakes. Get an IGM (its illegal in the USA), but that sucker will kill and eat rattlers IGM = Indian Grey Mongoose., they are immune to the venom of the rattler.
Rob May 05, 2012 at 05:30 PM
Does the Fire Dept charge to remove the snake? I thought they were over burdened????? 1/4 mile.... now what idiot is going to call the Fired Dept and then have this potentional killer moved only 1/4 mile from their home? Just hit the damn thing right behind the head with a shovel or stick. That or get a pellet gun and shoot the thing. I had one in my yard last year and did just that. Animal control said, in short, thank you. Relocate a rattle snake 1/4 mile from your home. Only the govt would do something so idiotic in the name of "the ecosystem."
Elizabeth Laird May 05, 2012 at 07:25 PM
The reason they relocate them so close to where they are found is because if they move them too far from their habitat they die.
AFR May 05, 2012 at 07:25 PM
Hey Rob, you know why the Fire Dept. takes care of all snake calls? Because people call 911 and no one else will do it. Animal control? Good luck. I think they have one officer working the entire county. Bees? Yep. Fire Dept. takes care of that too. Pretty much anything not Police related is passed onto the Fire Dept. Get your pp caught in your zipper? Ring stuck on your finger? Strange liquid containers or something that looks like a bomb by your house? Did you hear fireworks or a car backfire? Think you heard, (not see), a car crash? Smell gas, smoke, or a fart? Over burdened? That's their job. Who else you gonna call? Ghost Busters? They even deliver babies at Del Taco. If you can figure out what "govt" department, (that already exists), will take care of all these issues when people call 911, then please let us know. And don't start making up dept.'s and getting rid of govt dept.'s that are already there. Not going to happen. And don't add to them. Not going to happen. Comment on something you know about. I'm tired of seeing your name spewing nothing but negativity and problems. Come up with some solutions instead of talking a bunch of BS like everyone else in these blogs. They should have a blogging system like the P.E. and people like you would disappear and be miserable and alone, like you should be.
Bob Hays May 05, 2012 at 08:27 PM
Use common sense and take care of your own snake calls and don't bother 911. Grandma's excluded!
Murrieta Mom May 05, 2012 at 10:45 PM
Some needs to take ROB's advice and use it on ROB!
Krystal Brown May 06, 2012 at 04:17 AM
I'm with Rob on this one!
John Kirk De Ritis May 06, 2012 at 06:00 AM
Good night, 1/4 mile that means you found it on calle de Oso Oro and you put it on Nutmeg .... What in the world is going in here
John Kirk De Ritis May 06, 2012 at 06:05 AM
Be nice if our highly paid city manager would devote some of his time to a rattlesnake park right next to city hall and the senior center. Murrieta rattlers would be a nice name for a team here in Murrieta. If you build it they will come . Snakes! On de plane !
Dog May 06, 2012 at 03:53 PM
Rattlesnakes aren't on any endangered list and I don't see the need for relocation, they are easily dispatched using a shovel and a bit of common sense, I work in LaCresta and dispose of several a year...careful of the baby ones cause they don't rattle...p.s. Most of them are democrats...
Galactic Cannibal May 06, 2012 at 06:53 PM
"Come up with some solutions instead of talking a bunch of BS like everyone else in these blogs." Question Dude ...Are you excluded from the above ??
JAM May 06, 2012 at 06:56 PM
@ Dog, Actually the quite rattlers are clearly republicans like Rep. Issa
John Campbell May 12, 2012 at 11:08 PM
my name is John and part of our business is the removal of rattlesnakes, many in murrieta.John J and j willdlife removal. call us we can be right out.
Nicki September 11, 2012 at 04:07 AM
im just trying to find out how to protect me and my dog whike out hiking,and,,,are they easy to kill?? what should i bring on my hikes,ive been seeing alot lately,,thank you
Desert Dweller February 17, 2013 at 08:25 PM
Nicki, as an avid hiker, snakes do not pose much of a problem as long as you are vigilant and show them respect. Keeping your dog on a leash will help but you can find snake avoidance training for dogs. Typically I will give them a few moments to move on their own, step around them if safe, or move them off trail with a staff or trekking pole. Some tossed pebbles works well also. There should be no need to kill them unless your life is in danger then by all means.

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