How To Stop Snakes From Stealing Chicken Eggs

In terms of keeping your eggs safe from snakes, prevention is the name of the game.

Preventing snakes from entering your coop is the best way to ensure snakes don’t steal your chicken eggs.

This may seem like a daunting task but it this can be done effectively and safely for both your chickens and the snakes. While not everyone is a fan of snakes—especially if they are stealing your eggs—that doesn’t mean that they aren’t a unique animal that is deserving of life.

Killing snakes is not the only way to prevent them from stealing your chicken’s eggs, and thankfully there are a lot of different, natural solutions to help keep them away…


How To Keep Snakes Away


Block any holes or unwanted entrances to your coop
The best way to keep snakes from eating your chicken’s eggs, is to keep them away from the eggs altogether. Snakes are great at getting into places they shouldn’t be and even large snakes can squeeze through the smallest of holes. This is problematic if you are trying to keep them out of your coop and away from your eggs. To avoid this, try plugging up or blocking any and all holes in your coop that are larger than ½’’. You can do this by using hardware cloth or a fine mesh in those areas. You can also use this hardware cloth or fine mesh around fences, runs and even the base of your coop.


Gather up your eggs frequently

Photo by Daniel Tuttle on Unsplash

Snakes won’t eat your eggs if there are no eggs present to eat. Gathering up your chicken’s eggs will discourage snakes from coming around since there is no food source easily available to them. Once a snake establishes your chicken coop as a prime feeding spot, they are much more likely to come back and hunt there again. Picking up your eggs before the snakes get the chance to eat them will help them realize they need to find their food elsewhere.


Increase visibility around your coop
Wild snakes are naturally shy creatures that prefer to remain unseen. This means they will be drawn to areas that offer more places to hide. Tall grass, logs, stones, brush, or other debris are perfect areas for a snake to hide. Getting rid of these areas will discourage snakes from traversing your yard into your chicken coop. Using the shy nature of snakes to your advantage can help you keep your chicken eggs safe by ensuring that snakes feel too vulnerable and exposed to enter your coop.


Try to discourage rodents from making your coop their home
While snakes will eat the occasional egg if given the opportunity, their main food source is rodents. If you have rodents that frequent your coop, it is likely that snakes will not be far behind. In order to discourage snakes from appearing, ensure that rodents are staying far away from your coop.

One way to do this is by making sure all your chicken feed and any seeds are properly stored in rodent-proof containers. Also make sure to clean up any uneaten feed that may be scattered about and even raise up your coop up from the ground. Rodents can easily burrow underneath the coop and make a tunnel to the inside. Though both rodents and snakes can climb, raising your coop will make things a little more difficult and prevent burrowing. If you are seeing rodents inside your coop, not only will that attract snakes but any entrance that a rodent can get through, snakes can get through as well. This means that seeing rodents in your coop, may be a sign that your eggs are in danger.


Frequently check your coop for snakes, and close the coop at night

Image by Dushan Hanuska, flickr under CC BY-SA 2.0

If snakes are easily able to enter through small holes in your coop, they will be able to get in even easier if the door is open. If you keep your coop open throughout the night it becomes all the more likely that a snake may camp out in there. If you check your coop often for snakes and make sure that the door is closed and properly secured at night, it will be much harder for snakes to get inside and consume any eggs.



  • Do snake repellants work?

No commercial snake repellants have been scientifically proven to work. Most contain sulfur or other pungent compounds that are supposed to smell bad to snakes, but unfortunately there is no evidence that this is actually effective at keeping snakes away. There are also certain natural repellants like lemongrass, marigolds, onion or garlic with strong scents that are said to discourage snakes from entering the area. However, there again is not much scientific evidence on the effectiveness of these plants. In terms of keeping your coop safe, the prevention methods we listed above will be much more effective than snake repellants.


  • Can bird netting help protect my coop from snakes?

Many people use bird netting around their coops to keep snakes away, and while it can stop snakes from getting in, the snakes and other wildlife can get tangled within the netting easily and die. This type of netting is not safe for wildlife but luckily there are some alternatives. Finer mesh with holes less than .5 inches in diameter are much safer as larger animals can’t get caught as easily in the holes. Stiffer hard plastic mesh is also used as a wildlife friendly alternative because it is less likely to become knotted around the animals trying to get through.


  • Will glue traps keep snakes away?

Glue traps are a very common trap for pest species like rodents but snakes can also get caught easily in this type of trap. However, glue traps are very inhumane and those that get caught within them usually perish. While it might keep snakes away from your chicken eggs, it is unnecessary and there are a wide variety of other options that won’t result in the death of wildlife.



Keeping snakes from stealing your eggs is a matter of preventing the snakes from gaining access to your coop. This can be done by ensuring they don’t have any easy access points, like small holes or an open door.

Closing these access points will also help keep the rodents away.

Keeping your coop clean and ensuring your feed is sealed will not only help get rid of these rodents, but the snakes they attract as well. Making your coop and surrounding area inhospitable to snakes is the best way to keep your eggs safe.

These methods are not only effective, they also stay away from ineffective commercial repellants and inhumane trapping techniques.

With the right prevention, you can keep your chicken eggs safe and not negatively impact natural ecosystems.

Nigel Robert

Nigel Robert is a lifelong reptile lover, biologist and wildlife consultant. He has kept many reptile species including Leopard Geckos and Ball Pythons and has had hundreds of encounters with wild species. His goal is to provide trustworthy and comprehensive advice to anyone who may encounter wild or pet reptiles.

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