by Rob Malcolm


EL DORADO HILLS (CBS13) — A slithering surprise has one El Dorado Hills family rattled after moving into their dream house.

They feel like prisoners in the home because the property is overrun with rattlesnakes and they say they’re getting little help to fix the problem.

The Kings did not expect to hear snakes hissing when they spent more than $700,000 on their sprawling home. Darla King says she has to check the ground for snakes as she gets out of the car, enters the garage and opens the door to her home.

Originally from Elk Grove, the Kings have now lived in their El Dorado Hills home for a year. They thought they knew what to expect, but it was not this.

“It would be unreasonable to live in El Dorado Hills and not have to deal with a rattlesnake without a doubt, but 29 in a year is too many. I’ve had days where I’ve killed three in a day,” Chuck King said.

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The house sits next to wildland on the south-facing slope. The rocks and grass around the property are the perfect habitats for rattlers.

“We’ve had snake guy come out here before and he said it’s snake highway and he said even he wouldn’t live here,” Darla Kings said.

Tyler Young from Placer Snake Removal saw the issue immediately. The company relocates all of the snakes they capture.

“If you’re behind a place with a potential den site, you’re going to have a massive amount of snakes compared to people away from a den site,” Young said.

The Kings spent $7,000 on snake fencing buried as deep as a foot in the ground.

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Even with the snake fencing, if the snakes want in, they are going to find it.

“So the snake fencing job looks pretty strong, it only looks like the only thing that has to be done is to install some plywood or two by four right at the bottom just to sweep flush with the concrete,” Young said.

The Kings’ homeowner association won’t allow them to extend their gate to the road to create a barrier. They’ve been told the project does not meet the aesthetic guidelines.

“I think there are times safety comes before decorations,” Chuck King said.

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So far, his 86-year-old father, the family dog, and other family members have been lucky, but others in the neighborhood have not shared the same good fortune.

“I’m gonna tell you right now, a guy five houses down got bit two weeks ago, he spent four days in ICU. [And needed] 21 vials of anti-venom off a baby,” Chuck King said.

After a year of battling the snakes, the Kings’ only option may be to relocate.

Young with Placer Snake Removal warned that this is just the tip of the iceberg because, after the long, wet winter and spring, many residents living in the foothills will notice more rattlesnakes than in previous years.