How to Remove a Snake From a Swimming Pool
Yikes! A Snake!
As a pool service technician, I often encounter this problem, and the problem being... I hate snakes! Snakes are drawn to the cool water during the summer months, or if you have a heated pool they are drawn to the warm water during the cool season. There is no effect on water chemistry if a snake is in the pool. You don't have to "shock" the pool after a snake has been in it. Really, we just want it out of there!
Getting It Out
Although I see snakes in pools swimming around, eventually they end up in the skimmer. If the pool pump is off, or not circulating, the snake will free swim until the pump is turned back on and eventually it will be pulled into the skimmer. This is where I usually see them... in the skimmer. Sometimes live, sometimes dead because of the long exposure to chlorine and not being able to get out of the skimmer since the suction is pulling them when the pump is running. Although snakes DO want to get out of the pool, most of the time it's difficult for them to get back out because of the distance of the water surface to the deck or coping.
So, there are a few ways to approach this.
- If the snake is free-swimming in the pool, usually a net can be used. If a net is not available, any type of long stick or even the pool pole, they sometimes will cling to that if you lift the snake up from underneath and can quickly relocate them.
- If a pole or stick does not work, and you aren't brave enough to jump in and scare the snake out, you will just need to wait until it ends up in the skimmer. Again, remember that the snake at this point probably is frightened and does not want to be in the pool, he just can't get out on his own. The pool return jets are normally designed and meant to circulate the water, both lower water and top surface. The water on the surface should be flowing through the skimmer one way, and it is designed to catch any debris (including snakes!). If the pump is running, eventually the snake will end up in the skimmer.
- If the skimmer basket is damaged or has has huge cracks and/or holes in it, the snake will end up in the pool pump basket. You will need to remove the skimmer basket. (I know, the skimmer basket handle is very close to the snake.) Use a hook on a pole of some sort to grab the skimmer basket handle and throw that snake somewhere else!
This is the best advice I can give as I have removed lots of snakes from pools. Luckily I have not run into any snake more than 2 to 3 feet. Usually small ones. So if you happen to see an anaconda, python, or cobra in your pool.... Umm, well ... RUN!! lol. Hope this has helped.
This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. Content is for informational or entertainment purposes only and does not substitute for personal counsel or professional advice in business, financial, legal, or technical matters.
Questions & Answers
My pool has not run since last year. It is full of leaves, frogs and water moccasins. Is there anything I can treat the pool with to run off the snakes?
Wow! Water Moccasins? If they are in the pool, it's usually difficult for snakes to get out on their own, meaning there is usually a coping or a lip around the edge of the pool making it difficult for them to get out. Although I am no big fan of snakes, I would not kill them. Call a snake removal expert (since they are poisonous) I, personally would try using the net method with a long pole but don't want to suggest that to anyone only because of the danger of a bite from one of these guys. If you drain the pool, they'll still be in there and need to be removed. As far as "treating the pool to run off the snakes" as I mentioned before, difficult for them to get out. Give them an "escape route" Use a log, board, whatever... so they can get out. Add some chlorine to the pool (don't shock it, or it could kill them), but some chlorine is fine. It will irritate them enough to find that escape alternative that you've put into the pool.Helpful 8
© 2013 Rob Hampton