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Full Moon Bus Club :: Forums :: Chit Chat :: Around the Campfire
 
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How does One Remove Snakes from a Vanagon?
Moderators: TN Jed, Lickity Split, docric, sweetbus, Tom and Phaedra, Collie
Author Post
dkinerson
Tue Aug 12 2014, 12:40PM
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Joined: Mon Feb 21 2011, 07:30AM
Location: Albany, NY
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Hi Guys!

Yesterday, I was looking for an afternoon project to do on my '81 Vanagon Westy rebuild. I was unloading stored parts from the rear and found some shedded snake skin on top of a box of parts. Later on, I saw, or at least I think I saw what looked like the skin of a bull snake peeking out around the sliding door latch mechanism, right where my hand would normally go to pry out a stiff latch. Gad that startled me! Enough so that I found a couple of heater boxes to take apart, and de-dent, which got done in jig time. All that pounding got rid of some of my anxiety and I got courage enough to take a body hammer and whack the sliding door trim to see if the noise would drive it off. Must have, 'cause it wasn't there later.

So, this timid, wanna be Westy driver needs your ideas on where the body cavities are that might big enough for a bull snake to call home. If I know where to look for 'em then maybe I can get rid of 'em and get back to wacking dents and building an engine.

Dave, In Albany, NY
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oddyboy
Tue Aug 12 2014, 01:59PM

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Leave the doors open, park in a closed up garage with a hungry cat, wait three days before you open garage.
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Lucky
Tue Aug 12 2014, 04:51PM

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Lol I feel the same about snakes too. Worst part is the initial surprise. If all you see is skin that thing should prob be gone unless there is a food source there that is attracting it. You can do what oddyboy said...most won't hang around long...can throw some moth balls in there too they don't like that.

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bear
Tue Aug 12 2014, 06:54PM

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I agree on the moth balls, load the van up with them, of course leave a door open so they(the snakes) can get out, I would do it outside the garage, don't want them in the garage. Drill a hole through the moth ball, tie a string on it and lower it into spaces you can't get to, then pull them out once the snakes are gone.

[ Edited Tue Aug 12 2014, 06:55PM ]

Good friends are like stars, you may not always see them, but they are always there.. Phil Cain 205 Old Stagecoach Rd. Easley SC 29642, 864-859-8256
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mrcamp
Tue Aug 12 2014, 07:26PM

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Bull snakes are as you know are harmless enough.
This past late March I got bit by a recluse spider and had a severe reaction. I was close to losing my left arm.
Now in mid august the bitten area is still causing me pain.
I am not afraid of snakes or spiders but my respect level for spiders has greatly increased.
All who read this be warned especially when working on projects that have sat awhile.You never know.

Good luck getting rid of the snake, or snakes.



Bury me on my Dixie farm
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hippieman88
Tue Aug 12 2014, 08:37PM

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Yeah saw a recluse at granny groses buses this year in my canopy outside the bus and it freaked me out. But as for the snakes, you've been told your best option I think.
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mdwdrw
Wed Aug 13 2014, 09:00AM

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Location: South Florida
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Good news, A snake will keep the mice and rats at bay. Bad news, There are a lot of places for all 3 to hide and build nests.

[ Edited Wed Aug 13 2014, 09:01AM ]

Mark and Donna 82 Vanagon Diesel Camper
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busdriver
Wed Aug 13 2014, 11:04AM

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Unfortunately, my dislike of snakes would cause me to dispose of the vehicle. Unreasonable I know. But there you have it.

Judy Neville
Chapel Hill NC

1966 Camper "Hannah"
1967 Singlecab "Khady"
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AlainRiaud
Fri Aug 29 2014, 10:37AM

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Location: Chambery (France)
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dkinerson wrote ...

Hi Guys!

Yesterday, I was looking for an afternoon project to do on my '81 Vanagon Westy rebuild. I was unloading stored parts from the rear and found some shedded snake skin on top of a box of parts. Later on, I saw, or at least I think I saw what looked like the skin of a bull snake peeking out around the sliding door latch mechanism, right where my hand would normally go to pry out a stiff latch. Gad that startled me! Enough so that I found a couple of heater boxes to take apart, and de-dent, which got done in jig time. All that pounding got rid of some of my anxiety and I got courage enough to take a body hammer and whack the sliding door trim to see if the noise would drive it off. Must have, 'cause it wasn't there later.

So, this timid, wanna be Westy driver needs your ideas on where the body cavities are that might big enough for a bull snake to call home. If I know where to look for 'em then maybe I can get rid of 'em and get back to wacking dents and building an engine.

Dave, In Albany, NY

Buy a pair of hens, magic, eggs free.
A Countryman hint, free of charge.


Proud owner of "Couette et Café"
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shaggydoc
Sat Aug 30 2014, 03:45PM

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I'd catch the sucker and let it go.
shag

If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him step to the music which he hears, however measured or far away.
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snoopy
Fri Sep 05 2014, 10:57AM
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dynamite!
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Fred
Fri Sep 05 2014, 08:14PM

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This is a really good thread

Had too many vans to count
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Tom and Phaedra
Mon Sep 08 2014, 08:44AM


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Quis Separabit?

First, you'll need some supplies:

A good size flag, red saltire on a field of white. You can substitute Little Trees air fresheners, but you need five of them to cover the cardinal points.

A TuTu and a flute of some kind. If you can dance, it helps, but it is not required.

Underwear is optional.

A six pack of Religious Candles.

A 12 gauge shotgun with a loose choke and frangible shells.


1) Start off by parking the bus in an open area. You may want to gather some friends, preferably the kind that are able to mock you in a goodhearted way. Tell them to bring beer.

2) Get dressed/undressed as indicated above.

3) Drape the flag or place the air fresheners atop the bus. You don't want the snake escaping from an unexpected direction, you are trying to guide it safely in a predictable manner and path out of the vehicle. Snakes have a little known but verified and documented aversion to that flag, and everyone knows how they feel about air fresheners.

4) For the same reasons outlined in (3), place the candles across the front of the bus, and along the drivers side of the bus in more or less even intervals. Open the sliding door and the rear hatch and light the candles.

5) By now the snake probably knows something is up, so be careful. Play a couple bars on the flute while either dancing or hopping jauntily around the bus a full 360 degrees seven times, then stop in front of the sliding door and recite the following old Irish incantation: Gach ceart. Bhuel, tá a fhios agam cad gotta liom a dhéanamh. Táimid i aer cooled bosca dul caoga míle uair an chloig. Agus is féidir aon cheann de na píosaí beag slimy de cac turas ciorcad nó sealaíochta nó hiodrálacha agus téann an éan síos níos tapúla ná mar a fraochÚn Téalainnis. Dá bhrí sin tá mo phost a choinneáil FMBC Rialú Ground eolas ar an gcaoi go hiomlán screwed go bhfuil muid, agus ansin teacht ar bhealach éigin a choinneáil ar an mháthair ar an mbóthar go ceann dhá uair an chloig go dtí go bhfaigheann muid chun Dóiteáin ar an tSléibhe. Figiúr sin amach.

6) In the likely event that probably didn't work, use the shotgun.

Tom



[ Edited Mon Sep 08 2014, 09:50AM ]

Asheville, NC
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AlainRiaud
Fri Sep 12 2014, 12:03AM

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I don't speak Irish, even if I'm a true Celte.
This appears very close to a Grimm fairy tale..

Proud owner of "Couette et Café"
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dkinerson
Tue Sep 16 2014, 08:44PM
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Joined: Mon Feb 21 2011, 07:30AM
Location: Albany, NY
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Thanks for all the replies!! Never laughed so much in my life!!! Of all the suggestions I like the last one the best. But after performing the ritual, nothing happened right away. So I tried the moth balls. No evidence of snakes now, but I can't be sure which method worked. Better safe than sorry, I guess. Besides Tom's method was a good reason to party.

As to the other commentors, individual comments follow:

I didn't know chickens would keep the snakes down. The neighbor's has some, so I suspect the snakes came here to get away from 'em. The roller bearing mouse traps (aka cats) would likely work, if you could keep 'em from being hit out on the road.

After posting the question, my brother-in-law suggested that I get some pepermint oil and spray it all through the van and the surrounding area. The stuff is strong smelling and repells both mice and snakes. He also suggested spraying kerosene around the van instead of the pepermint oil. He uses it under his wooden pool deck with great sucess. And finally, he mentioned using dryer sheets to repell mice and snakes.

So I put dryer sheets in the heater ducts so they'll smell pretty, and used moth balls suspended from the ceiling in little cheeze cloth bags. Also got two moth balls in each bumper and one in each in the the door cavities. Another couple in a cheeze cloth bag in the spare tire well and finally one on the sliding door track where I found the pesky critter.

Man that is a lotta effort to keep 'em out. Guess I'll have to take up dancing naked around the van in the light of the full moon. Much more fun...

Dave in Albany, NY

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busdriver
Wed Sep 17 2014, 08:19AM

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Joined: Wed Aug 11 2010, 10:52AM
Location: Chapel Hill NC
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Your next posting will ask how to get rid of the mothball smell.

Let us know when you'll be dancing.

Judy Neville
Chapel Hill NC

1966 Camper "Hannah"
1967 Singlecab "Khady"
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