Snake is eating my frog--Help!!

Sara_in_phillyJuly 31, 2010

I looked out my second floor window and saw some movement by the pond side. I went out to check and this is what I found.

As I tried to get closer to intervene, the snake let go of the frog and both of them jumped back to the pond, well, the frog jumped back, and the snake just snaked back.

The frog is not large, maybe the body is 1.5-2" long. I have many fishes smaller than that. Will the snake eate the fishes too?

I like having frogs in my pond, can I somehow trap the snake?

This is the 5th year I have the pond and I have never had snake until this year. Last month, I found a snake shredding skin on my driveway under a tarp, now a snake eating a frog. What's going to happen next?

This is a very strange year!

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Oh no lol, Its just a part of nature I guess, just trap and relocate the snake,

    Bookmark   July 31, 2010 at 11:59AM
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lisa11310(z5 MI)

The frog is lucky you chose that moment to look out! I agree relocate the snake.

    Bookmark   July 31, 2010 at 12:24PM
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I can't find the snake! Where do snakes like to hide? I know it went into the pond, but does it stay in the pond?

The frogs have been darting in the pond a lot today, I though it's a bit unusual. Is it the snake scaring them?

    Bookmark   July 31, 2010 at 1:02PM
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catherinet(5 IN)

Looks like a northern water snake....I think. I have about 3 of them in my tiny pond, and very few frogs. I have rescued a couple frogs from their jaws.
They like to hide in brush or under a deck/pot/bale of straw, etc....and I've seen them go into holes in the ground.
If you don't want the snake around, you'll need to relocate it. They like to set up housekeeping when they find a nice place to live. The one big one I have has been here for several years.
I know its hard to take...seeing a frog get eaten. But as duddlydoright said.....its nature.
I told my snakes they could stay ONLY if I never see them eating the frogs. haha

    Bookmark   July 31, 2010 at 1:10PM
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According to Billy the Exterminator on TV, Garlic Spray will keep snakes away. I don't know if that's true, but thought of it when I read your post. I don't know how garlic spray would affect frogs and other critters.

Good luck

    Bookmark   July 31, 2010 at 2:47PM
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When we lived in Colorado Springs I had a pond - 30 gal tub - which a snake found. So much for the handful of little goldfish I had. One by one they just disappeared!

    Bookmark   July 31, 2010 at 7:43PM
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Snakes on a pond!


catherinet, how sure are you with that ID? I know nuthin' 'bout no snakes but I do know Wikipedia and that snake doesn't look like their picture:

Good news is it says they are not venomous. Bad news is they will bite you over and over if cornered.

[Quote:] Habitats Muskrat houses and beaver lodges are good places to find water snakes, which like to hide among the sticks and plant stems. They live near lakes, ponds, marshes, rivers, and canals; just about anywhere there is freshwater.

I'd add in look under your rocks too.

I love my frogs (found two newbies this morning!) and would hate to see them eaten. I'm happy you got froggie out of the jaws of death.

    Bookmark   August 1, 2010 at 10:27AM
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I don't know much about snake either, but I googled some snake pictures, I think it's a garter snake.

This is the same looking snake as the one I saw a month ago shredding on my drive way (under a tarp). Maybe it's the same one. It was listless when I lifted up the tarp, I found the snake shaped shredded skin (if that's the right word) a couple of days later.

If I knew it was going to go after my frog, I would have tried to capture it. How do you capture a snake anyway? Any trick?

I am still looking for the snake, just can't stomach seeing it eating the frog.

Stay tuned.

1 Like    Bookmark   August 1, 2010 at 11:22AM
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Snakes look for cool places to spend their days, and will likely be under brush or rocks. If you catch it, don't kill it. They are good guys because they keep mice and rats under control. Just see if you can get him in a sack and relocate him.

    Bookmark   August 1, 2010 at 1:03PM
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When I've seen guys on TV catching snakes they would use a Y shaped stick to press it neck down so it couldn't bite, then they could grab it just behind the head and get it into a sack.

    Bookmark   August 1, 2010 at 3:04PM
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catherinet(5 IN)

Yeah, on second thought I don't think its like my northern water snakes. Google your state DNR and look for snakes on their website.

    Bookmark   August 1, 2010 at 3:26PM
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No,I won't kill it, I just want to relocate it. Some one suggested to get it into an old pillow case, I just don't know how to get it into a sack or pillow case. Does snake slither away very slowly or fast? That snake went into the pond in the blink of an eye.

    Bookmark   August 1, 2010 at 3:30PM
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Y-shaped stick sounds good if I can find one, I don't think I want to grab the snake though:-)

    Bookmark   August 1, 2010 at 9:56PM
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Hi sara_in_philly,
I am pretty sure this is a checker garter snake. They are pretty fast when they want to be but are very safe to handle. They are the most abundant snake at our pond. I have relocated 6 so far this year along with several patchnose snakes and a very large hognose snake. I can catch them by the tail and they have never even tried to bit. We have quite a few frogs this year and we also keep rosy minnows, hoping the snakes would rather eat the minnows.(hognose got 2 of our favorite blue shubunkins anyway) If you have rocks around your pond they could be anywhere. Snakes will always be drawn to ponds especially where frogs and fish exist. Ponds are a magnet for wildlife, that's what makes them so wonderful. Just know they are safe snakes and easy to handle.

    Bookmark   August 2, 2010 at 9:16AM
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Thank you all for your input!

fireant -- Do garter snake stay in water for extended period of time? Should I look into the pond for the snake? The snakes you have relocated, did you just run into them or you have to actively look for them? I have rocks all around the pond.

    Bookmark   August 2, 2010 at 9:10PM
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The checkered garter doesn't stay in the water for an extended amount of time. They live under the rocks around the pond and use the rocks and plants for cover while they are hunting a meal. I keep an eye out for them and just grab hold if I get the chance. If they make it under the rocks they win for the time being. A pillow sack and some string around the top is the perfect way to transport them. There will always be snakes around our pond, I just thin the ranks when I can.

    Bookmark   August 2, 2010 at 9:48PM
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koijoyii(NE Ohio)

Hi Sara:

My brother found a garter snake hiding in an empty pop can one year in the park. Maybe if you take a small cardboard box that has a lid and cut a small hole in the side of it toward the bottom and place it where you saw the snake it will slither into the box and you will be able to block the hole and relocate it. It may or may not work, but it's worth a try.


    Bookmark   August 3, 2010 at 9:09AM
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Your snake is an Eastern Garter Snake. fireant's comments about it spending most of its time in and around the rocks around the pond, not in the pond itself is right. You could grab it by the tail and put it in a pillow case. You can wear work gloves if you're worried that it might get agitated and bite your hand. Excellent picture by the way!

    Bookmark   August 3, 2010 at 2:25PM
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Jenny, I will give that cardbox box a try. Don't have anything to lose:-)

wayne_mo, thanks for the compliment on the picture. I will see if I can muster the courage to grab the tail of the snake (wearing gloves, of course) when I see it.

I have been "beating around the bushes" with a broom literally, and no sign of snake so far.

    Bookmark   August 4, 2010 at 11:31AM
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Concur on it being an Eastern Garter snake. They only go in the water to find something to eat. I would just let it be or move it to a suitable habitat not so close to your pond, but you have more snakes than you know most likely. Snakes are on the menu from hawks and other animals so it's turn will come. Heck - frogs eat frogs and a big frog would eat a baby snake. Fantastic photo BTW. I am a big fan of snakes and hate to see it when people kill them just because they are snakes. I've saved a few snakes from my neighbors shovels more than once:-)

Here is a photo of a Garter snake that ate a toad I called Mrs. Fowler.

    Bookmark   August 7, 2010 at 3:05AM
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catherinet(5 IN)

Great Pics Comettose. Sorry about Mrs. Fowler! (is that her in the middle of the snake?) :(
Its hard loving everything around the pond, since some things end up being lunch for the others.

    Bookmark   August 7, 2010 at 9:42AM
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catherinet that thick part in the middle of the snake was its meal. Fireant is on the money with checking out your DNR do ID the snake. If not poisonous you can grab it by the tail when you see it. Make sure to hold it way from your body when you grab hold. It may be like an active slinky and go all around. May be a good idea to keep a pillow case close when you frequent your pond so when you see it again you can get it into the case quickly.
Oh and they can move away from you very fast. Snakes are not slow by any means.


    Bookmark   August 7, 2010 at 2:12PM
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larryl(7 Southern Oregon)

I don't get it. What is wrong with having a snake near the pond? You built a pond and probably added some fish. Then all kinds of creatures came, including frogs, insects, shrimp, bacteria, and a snake. Some of these need to eat some of the others in order to survive.

I hate to be rude, but if you didn't want a piece of nature in your backyard maybe you shouldn't have built a pond.

    Bookmark   August 7, 2010 at 4:21PM
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comettose: How long is your snake? And how big is Mrs. Fowler? I had a frog about half the size of my fist missing over a month ago and the snake in the picture is over 2 feet long, can a snake that size eat a big frog like that?

    Bookmark   August 12, 2010 at 8:07PM
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horton(6 b Ontario.)

Check the link below for a different slant on "what eats what"!

Here is a link that might be useful: Frog steals fish.

    Bookmark   August 13, 2010 at 8:53AM
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Horton, that's some story!

    Bookmark   August 13, 2010 at 11:12AM
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catherinet(5 IN)

larry......most of us realize this. Some people are terribly frightened by snakes, others not.
We tend to get close to all the creatures that come to our pond. We just have trouble accepting that they might eat each other.
I hate to think that my snakes eat the frogs. But then when I hear an owl, I worry for the snake.

    Bookmark   August 13, 2010 at 12:30PM
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topsiebeezelbub(z7 Al)

I know this is a very old thread, but wondered if you ever caught the snake(s), have the toads, fish and frogs survived? I am seeing lots of garter snakes this year (been here 42 years and this is a first) I have not seen any toads at all, except the two I made the snake spit out. I don't want her eating my fish. I read one snake will have 50 babies!!!!! I miss my toad love songs...snakes don't sing.

    Bookmark   April 24, 2014 at 3:29PM
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Specifically To: "larryl 7 Southern Oregon"... Your reply was a bit thoughtless regarding your comment referring that 'you built a pond - deal with it' attitude. I am deathly afraid of snakes, just the sight and I go into a panic attack and vomit - all because of just the sight whether it be non-poisonous or poisonous, doesn't matter. Everyone understand having a water garden brings in all types of wildlife...being a lover of ALL animals, including reptiles, I get an emotional attachment to the various creatures that live in my pond. It is obvious snakes have to eat, but I don't necessarily want them to eat from my personal, nurtured pond. You wouldn't want animals eating veggies or flowers from a garden you worked hard at maintaining? So instead of dishing out attitude to those of us that love the pleasure and beauty the ponds and the inhabitants bring to us, try instead giving us useful info, not flippant, sarcastic comments that help no one.

This is a forum for us to ask for help and get 'real' advice, not a platform for your opinion. And don't forget, snakes can be a real problem for a lot of people in a lot of different ways.

    Bookmark   August 5, 2014 at 12:27PM
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Scrapbook time again!

    Bookmark   August 5, 2014 at 1:26PM
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waterbug_guy(Phoenix AZ (Melrose))

This is a forum for us to ask for help and get 'real' advice, not a platform for your opinion.
When did forums change?

I don't know of a single pond forum where "real" advice is monitored for correctness. It's the exact opposite. Forums are for people to say their opinion, crazier the better, and act like it's "real" advice. In some pond forums members aren't even allowed to discuss other members' opinions...I mean facts.

Forums make money by getting the most eyeballs, not correctness. And there are a lot more people in the world who think they know stuff than actually know stuff. So forums cater to people who think they know stuff. Always have, always will. Welcome to the internet.

However, many forum members do believe their opinions are actually "real" advice.

But this does answer the question of whether a post can ever be too old to try and start a flame war. Apparently 4 years isn't old enough.

    Bookmark   August 5, 2014 at 3:54PM
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I had lots of frogs but it isn't the snakes I worry about. I had 6 beautiful Koi, a couple were well over 2 feet long, and some huge Green Frogs (too many to count) with a loud low call I loved. We observed a Great Blue Heron at the pond after returning from a weekend trip only to find one 8" Koi left, a few goldfish, and only a couple small frogs have been seen or heard. I put a grapevine net over the pond that stayed all winter but that will not work for water snakes. Haven't seen the Heron since. A snake might get one frog now and then but a Heron will clean out a pond of frogs and fish in a very short time. Raccoons are also worse than snakes, especially with frogs. We are going to add more Koi soon and it might be a couple years or more before the frogs grow up. They all breed well in the pond.

    Bookmark   August 5, 2014 at 7:31PM
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Min3 South S.F. Bay CA

waterbug guy HA! I had a good laugh thanks to you. Min

    Bookmark   August 6, 2014 at 4:57PM
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Didn't know this thread was still alive last year.

.Topsiebeezebulb: I never caught that snake, but I know it is around or his descendent is around. I found shredded snake skin in my compost bin later on. I still has lots of frogs and fishes in my pond. If the snake ate some of them, I didn't see it:-)

Hope you are still around at this forum and can see this.

    Bookmark   February 22, 2015 at 11:21AM
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gardnpondr(Zone 8)

I covered mine with bird or animal netting and the snakes will get trapped in it. You can get them out IF you want. I have trapped several in mine. They try to go through the netting and get trapped in it because the square holes in the netting is small.

    Bookmark   February 25, 2015 at 2:40PM
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Min3 South S.F. Bay CA

That's just sad. Its why I don't ever use that bird netting and it also catches thirsty little birds. Min

    Bookmark   February 25, 2015 at 7:18PM
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I have learned to live with the snake! I see their shed skin from time to time. I used to use bird net cover the pond to prevent heron attack, now I use fishing line criss-cross the pond, works much better. Birds always drink and bath in the little stream connecting to the pond.

    Bookmark   last Saturday at 12:46AM
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