Naramata residents stumble upon live snake caught in mouse trap in laundry room

Snake stowaway in laundry

It seems a snake got itself into a snafu while looking for nibbles in a Naramata resident’s home on Thursday, snaring itself in a live mouse trap.

Richard McMaster and his wife Marlane were called over by their neighbour for help with the trap.

“I was downtown at the time,” Richard explained. “But when I got home, my wife told me that our neighbour needed help with a mouse that was still alive.”

But when they found the trap in the laundry room, it was definitely not a rodent.

“When Marlane saw it, she told her 'It's not a mouse. That's a snake.' I think she was pretty surprised!”

The small gopher snake looked to be no more than 10 inches long.

While the couple has run into snakes before in the area, neither have heard of one showing up in winter in a laundry room.

“I don't know how it got in the house,” he added.

Marlane proceeded to take the snake out of the trap and put it in a couple of plastic bags, to prevent it from escaping. After that, she brought it home for Richard to figure out what was best to do with it.

“I thought it was too cold to put it outside, to tell you the truth. So I made the post on the Naramata Facebook page and the whole town came to the rescue. It was just amazing,” Richard said.

Suggestions poured in from the community for animal control lines to call. Eventually, Richard was able to bring the snake to a local herpetologist — an expert who studies reptiles — who plans to release it in a better area.

“It's fast, too. It tried to escape a couple of times. And I put it into a plastic bin when I took it downtown. It darn near got away on me,” he said.

“We're aware that keeping wildlife in B.C. is against the law. I didn't want to kill it and I didn't want to release it in this kind of weather, early for snakes. So that's why I did the search online to see where maybe I could take it.”

Phone the Conservation Officer Reporting Line at 1-877-952-7277 or the local Bylaw or Animal Control Office for help when stumbling across a snake in your home.

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