Dangerous job, but someone's gotta do it
BEING a snake catcher is a dangerous job, just ask Sally Hill.
Mrs Hill, one half of husband and wife snake catching team N&S Snake Catchers based at Goodna, is often sent pictures of people holding snakes and asking for help to identify them.
"Don't pick them up. It is bloody dangerous,” she warned.
"It's a dangerous job, there's only a handful of us around. In Queensland we live around snakes and like everything else its a profession.”
Her warning comes after a woman encountered an aggressive juvenile brown snake while walking recently in the Augustine Heights area, and a man died while trying to remove a brown snake from his Townsville home last month.
If you do come across a snake when out walking it's best to just stay still say the experts.
"Stand still like a tree. Don't move. You just don't know what the snake's going to do at the end of the day.”
For Mrs Hill it took a little time to adjust to living with snakes, but she respects them.
Her hubby Norman, however has always loved snakes and collected reptiles when he worked at Australia Zoo.
"When I first met Norman I didn't mind snakes, but it wasn't my thing. I know where people are coming from when they are scared.”
She has learnt a lot about snakes over the years from how red bellies come out when its about to rain, to some snakes get snappy after they've eaten.
The couple have caught snakes in all kinds of situations, even at their kids' school.
Now they are teaching their kids how to respect snakes.
"We teach them never to pick them up.”
They urge people call the professionals when they see a snake.
"Never pick them up, you don't know how to read a snake.”
They started the business four years ago and now do wildlife demonstrations.
"Sometimes we both go out. When we first started it was hard juggling six kids, school work and the business,” Mrs Hill confessed.
Mrs Hill said even though it was getting colder snakes would still be around, especially as the days were warm.
When it cools down the volumes of calls about snakes drop off but she still gets call outs especially as snakes take shelter in roofs at night.
"This time of the year you get pythons hiding in roof cavities. A lot of times people hear slithering.”
If you need a snake catcher you can call N&S Snake Catchers on 0415 136 941 or visit nssnakecatcher.com.au