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Can Snakes Climb Stairs?

February 23, 2021
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Can you imagine a snake climbing stairs? It's a pretty terrifying concept for people who suffer with a crippling phobia of snakes. If you live in an area where there are a lot of wild snakes, you may be wondering whether these slithery creatures will be able to climb the stairs up to your front door, or worse, the stairs in your home.

Snakes can climb stairs, and they do, if there is a reason for them to do so. But due to their physiology, they climb stairs in a very unique manner.

In this article, we are going to be looking at how snakes climb stairs and what to do if you are worried about one getting into your home.

Do Snakes Climb Stairs?

All snakes have the ability to climb stairs, provided that the snake is long enough to reach the next step. You see, snakes cannot climb stairs in the same way that we would; they don't have legs, after all.

So, they have had to come up with more inventive and creative ways of navigating the world.

These are pretty amazing creatures and while many people are frightened of a snake making its way into their home, you've got to hand it to the snake; they're certainly agile.

When a snake is attempting to climb stairs, they will use the bottom two thirds of their bodies as a base to steady themselves while lifting the top part of their body onto the higher step to pull themselves up. They will repeat this action until they reach the top.

For smaller snakes, this may not be possible since they may not have the length to reach the next step. This is the only time that a snake wouldn't be able to climb stairs.

If the snake is longer, for example, a King Cobra or a python, you may observe them scaling several steps at a time.

Snake Climbing Ability

One of the most incredible things about snakes is their unique bodies that are packed with adaptations to make their lives easier. For example, these creatures have as many as 400 ribs and vertebrae which makes them amazingly flexible.

Not only does this help with their general movement, but it can be hugely advantageous to the animal when it comes to climbing.

snake climbing

In the deserts, jungles and forests where snakes are often naturally found, there aren't too many flights of stairs. But there are plenty of other obstacles that a snake may need to climb; trees, for example.

This requires the snake to have strong muscles and excellent agility. As such, they are easily able to tackle trees, rocks, walls, and yes, you guessed it - stairs!

Another key aspect of the snake that makes it an excellent climber are its ventral scales. While a snake is covered in scales, these are typically found on the belly and work along with the snakes ribs to help them climb.

Essentially, they act as a form of traction, allowing the snake to grip the surface up which it is climbing.

Why Is A Snake Trying To Get Inside My House?

There are a lot of people in the world who are petrified of snakes and seeing one trying to scale the front porch steps with the intent of getting in the house can be a horrifying moment.

But it is important to keep in mind that snakes, despite their reputation, aren't evil creatures. In fact, even venomous snakes will only pose a risk if they feel threatened.

snake in a house
This is not what you want to see in your bathroom

Their way of defending themselves is to attack but if they are trying to get into your house, it's unlikely there is malice on their minds.

In all likelihood, the snake is simple seeking shelter and warmth and your home may be the perfect place for this. Of course, not many people want to share their homes with wild animals, so there are things you can do to prevent snakes from setting up shop in your home.

If you live in a place where there are a lot of wild snakes, you may not see them entering you home via the front steps. Snakes will often climb exterior walls in an attempt to get into the attic through a small hole.

Thanks to their flexible nature, a snake would have no trouble fitting through a small gap, so it is worth making sure that there are no entrance points on the walls.

How Do I Stop Snakes Trying To Get Into My House?

As we have mentioned, there are ways that you can stop snakes from getting into your home. Or rather, there are ways that you might deter them and make them look for shelter elsewhere.

  • Keep your garden well-maintained. Regularly trim hedges and cut the grass. This will give the snake fewer places to hide as it susses out whether it wants to come inside.
  • Try not to keep food in the garden if you have pets like cats and dogs. Always feed these animals inside the house as leaving food bowls outside may attract wild animals, including snakes.
  • If you can, install fences around the perimeter of your property. While a snake could theoretically climb the fence, it is unlikely to do so for the effort it would need to exert is greater than the potential reward.
  • Avoid keeping log piles and other things in the garden where snakes could hide.
  • Make sure that all cracks and holes in the walls are sealed, even if they appear small, a snake may still be able to squeeze through.

Conclusion

There are thousands of species of snake around the world and for years, humans have lived alongside them. However, when snakes begin coming into your home via the front steps, it can be anything from mildly frustrating to utterly terrifying, depending on your stance.

Snakes can climb stairs and do so by lifting the top part of their body onto the higher step while steadying themselves at the bottom and pulling themselves up.

This means that they can get into your home, even if there are several steps leading up to the entrance.

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