Rattlesnakes Take Over Texas Yard

By author of The Realblog with Stephanie Mallory

Family says 29 rattlesnakes in one year is too many; HOA won't allow further snake-proofing

Members of one El Dorado, Texas, family say they feel like prisoners in their own home. They claim their property is overrun with rattlesnakes, and they're getting little help solving the problem. 

With a quivering voice, Darla King told CBS Sacramento: "When I get out of the car, I have to look on the ground to see if there's any in the bark. When I come around the back of the car, I look into the garage to see if there's any in the garage."

The Kings did not expect to have such a large problem with rattlesnakes when they spent more than $700,000 on their sprawling home a year ago.

“It would be unreasonable to live in El Dorado Hills and not have to deal with a rattlesnake without a doubt, but 29 in a year is too many. I’ve had days where I’ve killed three in a day,” Chuck King said.

We’ve had a snake guy come out here before, and he said it’s a snake highway and even he wouldn’t live here.

The house sits next to wild country on a south-facing slope. The rocks and grass around the property are the perfect habitat for rattlers. Some experts say there's likely a den nearby.

“We’ve had a snake guy come out here before, and he said it’s a snake highway and even he wouldn’t live here,” Darla King said.

Tyler Young from Placer Snake Removal said: “If you’re behind a place with a potential den site, you’re going to have a massive amount of snakes compared to people away from a den site."

The Kings spent $7,000 on snake fencing buried as deep as a foot in the ground, but the fencing hasn't been enough. They want to extend their gate to the road to create a barrier, but the homeowner's association won't allow them to, claiming the project doesn't meet the aesthetic guidelines.

“I think there are times safety comes before decorations,” Chuck King said. “I’m gonna tell you right now, a guy five houses down got bit two weeks ago; he spent four days in ICU. [And needed] 21 vials of anti-venom, off a baby,” he told CBS 13.

After a year of battling the snakes, the Kings say their only option may be to relocate.

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