Imagine a nearly 6-foot-long rattlesnake, coiled up on top of your child's toy! That's what a Riverview man says he discovered inside his garage.
“I heard the sound. I jumped back, and that's when he struck,” Chris Olcott said.
“When I saw this thing, I knew it was a monster. It was a people killer.”
Olcott says the snake was right on top of his 7-year-old daughter's scooter, just before darting into a back corner. Concerned for his family's safety, he used a dog crate to wrangle the reptile.
“I got him scared and got him going, and he just slid into the cage,” Olcott said.
The Olcotts say this is the third snake they've spotted around their home this summer, and other neighbors have had similar sightings.
Snake experts says encounters like this one aren't uncommon, especially in areas with lots of development.
They suggest homeowners keep their yards clear of debris, and keep the garage door shut, deterring any opportunistic intruders.
“Snakes will often move along barriers, such as walls of your house,” nuisance wildlife trapper David Lueck said.
“And if you have an opening somewhere, whether it be some bad weather stripping or something like that they'll just scoot right in.”
Olcott has already made changes to his yard.
“It scared me a lot to think about my daughter being out there,” he said.
He’s hopeful of keeping 6-foot snakes out of his home – for good.
(© 2016 WTSP)