Do Snake Repellers Work?

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Flaviemys purvisi

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Oct 28, 2017
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Your Guide to Snake Repellents - by Alice Murphy

Do snake repellers work?

Australia has a long list of wacky methods and devices aimed at warding off unwanted snakes, but the internet has long been divided about the efficacy of repellers.

With slithering serpents a real cause for concern to many Australian families, particularly those living in rural areas, vast numbers have spent significant time and money ‘snake-proofing’ their residence against potential visitors during the summer season.

But although there are a variety of snake repellers on the market ranging from homemade oil blends to expensive ultrasonic vibrators, there seems to be no consensus as to whether they actually work or not.

Offering an expert opinion, Professor Rick Shine who is a snake behavioural specialist from the University of Sydney, said he is “sceptical” of all snake repellers.

Repellents come in chemical or vibrating form, with liquid repellers usually laced with phenyl and ultrasonic vibrating devices primarily solar and battery powered.
Sureguard repellers are available in store and online from Bunnings Australia.

Sureguard Solar Snake Repellent

Sureguard repellents emit a pulsing vibration through the surrounding soil powered by solar energy.

When snakes sense the vibration, the vast majority will perceive it as danger and avoid the area around pulsing beat, in a similar vein to the way snakes avoid bushwalkers stomping on the soil with sticks and shoes.

Sureguard advise placing two solar repellers at the front of your home and two at the rear, between 10m and 25m apart, to create a snake-free zone around the house.

The $45 device comes with rechargeable batteries for day and night use and changes vibration pattern to deter snakes time and again.

Sureguard claim that snakes can barely detect audio sounds, but are extremely sensitive to the sensory vibration emitted by their repellers.

Independent customer reviews praised Sureguard, with one claiming to have had a dozen snakes in as many days on their property before installing the repellers, after which they “have not seen one since!”.

As well as working a charm, others said the devices were neat, compact and sat attractively on the front lawn.

Link to buy: Sureguard repellers are available in store and online from Bunnings Australia.
Sentinel battery powered snake repellers work in much the same way as Sureguard devices, emitting a rapid set of vibrations which signal danger to snakes.

Sentinel Q Snake Repeller

Sentinel battery powered snake repellers work in much the same way as Sureguard devices, emitting a rapid set of vibrations which signal danger to snakes.

Sentinel repellers create sensations similar to those given off by large herds of cattle, horses and sheep which act as natural deterrents to serpents.

Snakes quickly skirt these pulsing beats to avoid injury or confrontation with a larger animal, and with Sentinel devices covering an area of 20 metres in all directions from where it is placed it’s worth a try to keep unwanted visitors at bay.

For large gardens, Sentinel recommend using between four and six units for optimum efficacy.

Sentinel devices are 100% non-toxic and are safe for children, house pets and other wildlife.

At $80 per device, it’s not the cheapest solution and it is worth nothing that a number of negative reviews of Sentinel devices have been posted on Product Review Australia.

One user claimed the switch repeatedly became stuck while others reported problems with battery power.

Link to buy: The latest model of Sentinel repeller is available from now.

Eucalyptus, tea tree and lavender DIY deterrent

Organic distillery Emu Ridge suggest using a natural, homemade snake deterrent in the form of a native Australian oil blend.

Simply mix 20ml of Eucalyptus, tea tree, lavender and sandalwood oils with 120ml clove oil, 400ml methylated spirits and 420ml of water for a reportedly effective solution to trespassing snakes.

This recipe is touted as a more effective alternative to phenyl based liquid repellers.

According to Emu Ridge, snakes use their tongue to smell through a function called the vomeronasal system which allows snakes to sense tiny chemical particles on the roof of their mouth.

In this way, the snake detects things like dirt, plants, other animals and suspicious smelling concoctions like the Eucalyptus repeller.

Emu Ridge advise spraying a generous dose of the mixture along the boundaries of your property, outdoor sheds, plants and external doors.

The recipe comes from a reptile specialist and is safe to use around pets and other wildlife.

Online reviewers liked the organic nature of this deterrent, and suggested using the spray in conjunction with snake traps to truly snake-proof your property this summer.

Cinnamon oil, castor oil and peppermint oil are other natural options which are said to be a solution for how to keep snakes away.
Eucalyptus, tea tree and lavender are said to deter snakes

Raidar Snake Defence Multi-Pulse Solar Snake Repeller

If you’re confused about how to deter snakes this season, look no further than the Multi-Pulse snake repeller from Raidar which covers roughly 15 metres in all directions.

The ultrasonic device emits both vibration and noise every 50 seconds, with the earth borne pulses being the most important element.

The $59 Raidar creation changes pulse patterns every two days to prevent snakes growing accustomed to the beat, and positioning the device in firm ground will provide optimum protection.

The portable device is safe to use around children, pets, birds and livestock and works throughout the day and night.

It operates on long-lasting solar powered batteries and is recommended for use at home, on camping trips and for picnics.

To charge, leave the green plastic head in the sun for two days in bright sunshine, or three to four days if overcast.

Online reviews gave the Raidar product four stars and credited the device with keeping snakes away in what seems to be “an active snake year”.

Link to buy: Raidar Snake Defence Multi-Pulse repellent is sold separately from Derwent Traders or in packs of two for $99 from Mitre 10.

Kogan Pestill Solar LED Light Snake Repeller

A cost-effective option for snake repelling is the Pestill Solar LED Light from online pest control and hardware giant Kogan.

At $29 for a pack of two, the Pestill is one of the more pocket-friendly inventions for warding off serpents, rodents and other unwanted visitors.

It offers non-toxic protection, suitable for children and pets, and is both solar powered and weather resistant making it extremely low maintenance all year round.

The Kogan emits ultrasonic waves every 50 seconds to deter ground-dwellers like snakes, mice and rats with an effective range up to 14 metres.

For the best coverage, Kogan recommends placing two devices into the soil roughly 30 metres apart.

Link to buy: Buy this great value two-pack from Kogan just as warmer weather arrives.

Alice Murphy
Alice Murphy is a contributor for WHO and New Idea.


Very Well-Known Member
Apr 9, 2017
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It's a bit like the supposed rodent repellant properties of snake poo. People actually pay for snake poo and spread it around their garden.
My experience is rats and mice will eat it.
They can buy my snake poo fresh with rabbit smell. Will definitely strike fear into anyone who’s nose gets too close


Almost Legendary
Jun 28, 2004
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They probably do very little, some of them no doubt do nothing, some may even attract snakes in some circumstances, but surprisingly, no one has ever tested them in anything resembling a proper way.

Despite all the fervor among snake people, sometimes even angrily working themselves up into quite the emotional states demanding the whole world acknowledge they do absolutely 100% nothing, vibrations in the ground will cause at least some discomfort to some snakes some of the time. However, it will also attract other snakes sometimes. The effect of these miniature thumpers is probably negligible and I certainly wouldn't use them (well, personally, I like having snakes around anyway).

Try blasting some speakers really loudly to produce enough vibration that you can feel it. Do this in a room full of previously peacefully resting snakes and you'll see them all get agitated and try to find an escape. I don't think any of these gadgets would produce enough vibration to have a significant effect though.

It would be really interesting to lay out a nice tin spot, wait until snakes made homes under the tin and they were fairly evenly distributed in the tin spot, then put thumpers in half the tin spot and see if there was a change in distribution of the snakes. I wouldn't be surprised either way if there was no effect or a small but noticeable one.


Well-Known Member
Oct 21, 2013
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Don't see the purpose of this thread.

Plenty of vids and photos on the net of snakes sitting on, under and next to vibrating "snake repellents" so it appears they don't do the job that they are alleged to do.

This is an interesting article.

And this a just as interesting video showing that a powdered "snake repellent" also doesn't appear to live up to what it is alleged to do.



AussiePythons Supporter
Supporting Member
Sep 20, 2009
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as usual most of these products are are a waste of time and money,some might seem to work for a while but you might as well pee on a snake or spread garlic around your fence.As the African post said,keep your yard clear of rubbish and keep your grass cut short but even that is no guarentee.


Almost Legendary
Jun 28, 2004
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Not that I'm saying that repellent is any better than bottled dirt, but the video 'experiment' is completely invalid because the snakes are being put there and are already being disturbed/influenced by a human. The snakes are not behaving normally. I would run over broken glass to get away from a giant monster which had just captured me then let me go, making me think I had escaped. Again, I don't think that stuff works, but these experiments are meaningless. In some cases the guy actually chases the snake across it!

The same is generally true of the thumpers. Again, I don't think the thumpers are at all worthwhile, there is just a lack of anything resembling a valid experiment with them.

The purpose of this thread is to discuss how well if at all these deterrents work. Obviously some people are unsure or the thread would not have been started.

I'd really like it if someone did an actual series of valid experiments with these things. They'd no doubt show that the products were not worthwhile, which would be nice valid information to actually have. A bunch of snake people saying something is irrelevant because snake people usually talk even more **** than snake haters, so if you don't know whether or not they're right about something, it's generally a safer assumption to assume they're wrong.
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