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Old 11-04-2016, 20:52   #1
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Snakes onboard

My wife fears snakes beyond anything any of you can comprehend. We are in Belize right now and a fellow sailor told her that a snake had gotten into a friends boat and hid in the shower until she decided to use it. Well you can imagine the rest of the story but right now all my wife can think about is bloody snakes soooooo have any of you ever attempted to snake proof your boat and if so what did you do.
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Old 11-04-2016, 22:10   #2
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Re: Snakes onboard

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Originally Posted by robert sailor View Post
My wife fears snakes beyond anything any of you can comprehend. We are in Belize right now and a fellow sailor told her that a snake had gotten into a friends boat and hid in the shower until she decided to use it. Well you can imagine the rest of the story but right now all my wife can think about is bloody snakes soooooo have any of you ever attempted to snake proof your boat and if so what did you do.
Pet mongoose???
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Old 11-04-2016, 22:10   #3
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Re: Snakes onboard

My wife is a bit less sensitive, but she has freaked out when the sea snakes swim too close. In Bali Marina, she just pointed out the one climbing around the aft cabin and then stood on the dock.

I took a fishing rod, tied the line to the tip, made a loop, and when Mr Snake stuck his head through the loop I wound things in tight. While he was trying to squirm up the rod, I swung him overboard and released the noose.

As near as I can tell, he climbed up the cockpit drain and then explored the boat--had to have negotiated some vertical surfaces about 1 meter high. In my case I could have stuffed sponges in the drains, but the snake didn't seem interested in repeating his experience.
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Old 11-04-2016, 22:24   #4
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Re: Snakes onboard

Great stories, I was really reluctant to post this but I think it lets my wife sleep. She is a very bright woman but when it comes to snakes she is irrational and once ran into traffic to avoid a snake on the road during a walk. Hard to believe this same woman ran a very succesful company for many years.
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Old 11-04-2016, 22:40   #5
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Re: Snakes onboard

We have a woman friend who is snake phobic.

The only snakes we have found that come onto boats are sea snakes, and their venom apparatus is way back in their throats, and they are relatively small snakes, not huge, like pythons. I don't think I've ever seen one over 2" diameter, about 6 feet long. This snake would have to bite you on an appendage, he is unable to fang you like a rattlesnake or copperhead. They are air breathers and eat tiny stuff. The ones in New Caledonia are generally under 3 ft. long, and correspondingly smaller diameter. Although their venom is very strong, they really are little danger to humans, because it's hard for them to bite you. In addition, they are generally quite docile, non-aggressive snakes, actually rather elegant in their pale blue and black attire.

In the case of the woman above, mr. snake had come into their boat and curled up in the sink. The local maths teacher, who lived aboard there, came over to their boat, and gently removed the snake and it swam away.

In another case, I made a sea snake toy, filled it with beach sand, and gave it to a snake phobic friend and suggested she "fool around" placing the snake different spots in the boat. She found a lot of creative places for him to lurk, and eventually, her phobic reactions milded down, through a process I believe is called "desensitization". If you make a small copy of the type of the local snake, it's just a cylinder with a tapered head, fill him with beach sand, let her name it, and play with it--as therapy--she's a smart lady--it may help.

It is good to be aware of snakes, but the phobia can be helped, sometimes the sufferer had a traumatic incident in their childhood that triggered the reaction. But in the case of my friend, we never needed to go there, just having symbolic control was enough to allow her to let the extreme fear go.

Good luck to your wife, sir, in her recovery.
Ann
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Old 11-04-2016, 23:26   #6
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Re: Snakes onboard

I don't think you can snake proof a boat. You'd have to keep doors and ports closed or well screened and all valves closed.
I ran boats in Vietnam and snakes could come over high sides of military boats. They liked the heat of the engines as they cooled from running and would lay on top. To cool the boat we had to open the hatches to allow the engine heat to escape. Otherwise it was unbearable and impossible to sleep. That allowed an easy entrance, but we allowed an escape route in the way the engine hatches were propped open. When the engines were started they left in a hurry. Nobody ever got bit. And we saw lots of snakes. I remember cobras and bamboo snakes.
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Old 12-04-2016, 01:55   #7
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Re: Snakes onboard



If something like that crawled into my boat I would get an instant heart attack and she would have me easily for breakfast. Not far from where I am now actually.
Sadly this magnificient animal died.

http://www.newsweek.com/26-foot-long...t-snake-446419
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Old 12-04-2016, 04:06   #8
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Re: Snakes onboard

A little one climed our transom in Fiji 2008
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Old 12-04-2016, 04:30   #9
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Re: Snakes onboard

We had a snake on board (just the transom) in the Ionian a few years ago while at anchor. Our efforts to remove it made a hysterically funny tale that needed no embellishment .

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