AN OXLEY Vale woman has been too frightened to sleep at home after a couple of close encounters of the scaly kind.
Sandra Schneider spotted the first snake invader in her backyard two Sundays ago.
The encounter left the backyard off limits for Mrs Schneider for a number of days, but the worst was yet to come.
She finally mustered up the courage to leave the fortress and hang-out some washing last Thursday.
When she ventured back inside, a brazen ‘snake-and-enter’ in progress, as a two-foot long snake slithered up her tiled hallway.
She put in a call to her real estate, who sent a snake catcher to the house, but the intruder remained at large.
Mrs Schneider hasn’t been game to sleep in her home since she spotted the serpent and has opted to stay with friends instead.
“In other words, I’m held at ransom with my own home because of the snake,” Mrs Schneider said.
I’m held at ransom with my own home because of the snake.- Sandra Schneider
She has lived in Tamworth for 50 years, but Mrs Schneider hasn’t seen a snake season this bad and wanted her recent reptile encounter to be a cautionary tale.
“We have to make Tamworth people aware that snakes are about,” she said.
“A gentleman who lives nearby who has three young children.
“And you have to be mindful that these blighters are about.”
Tamworth WIRES reptile handler Jacob McGoldrick told The Leader it has been a busy year in terms of snake sightings.
Mr McGoldrick’s summer has seen everything from eastern browns, red-bellied blacks, yellow-faced whips, and a mysterious call-out to Gunnedah to retrieve an escaped python.
He said the hot summer had brought the serpents out en masse.
“They’re out trying to escape the heat and find some water,” Mr McGoldrick said.
He said Mrs Schneider’s case wasn’t entirely unusual.
“A lot of the time they will move-on fairly quickly,” he said. “They tend to feel pretty threatened and scared.”
While snakes can act defensively when they feel threatened, Mr McGoldrick said it was unlikely an unprovoked attack would occur.
“They’re not going to see a guy sleeping and think ‘I’ll go have a taste of him’, they don’t like confrontation as much as humans” he said.
If people do spot snakes in their homes, he said a good course of action would be to block off the room and call WIRES or a reptile handler as soon as possible.
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