Eggshells can attract snakes if they still contain egg material, if they attract rodents or breaking down in your compost bin. Eggshells can attract snakes if they are left broken in chicken yards or still contain some egg contents. Snakes can be attracted to your yard if you have chickens, dark or sheltered areas covered with tin or old wood or lots of rodents.
When eggshells can attract snakes
Eggshells in chicken coops
Snakes love chicken coops because they contain eggs, chickens which if small enough they will eat and can attract rodents. Eggshells that are left broken in chicken yards or in your compost heap can attract snakes who love to eat the protein rich filling of eggs.
Eggshells in compost bins
Eggshells that still contain egg residue when placed in your compost bin can attract snakes. Snakes can also be attracted to compost bins because they will warm up as the ingredients break down. The microbe action releases heat as they break down in the organic matter.
When compost bins are deep enough and contain enough organic matter, they will warm up and attract the cold blooded snakes. Often snakes are attracted to the heat of compost bins and piles more than the food in them, including egg shells.
Wild bird eggs in your yard
Wild birds that make nests in your yard can often drop or knock eggs out onto the ground under trees. This is a natural food for snakes in your yard and can attract them in your area. The best way to prevent these eggs from attracting snakes is to clean them up as soon as you notice them.
No eggs can be a sign of snakes
Snakes can often be attracted to bird cages and visit small birds like finches, quails or budgerigars kept at home. Snakes have been shown to prey on and eat quail, chicks and their eggs and can easily eat a whole quail egg without leaving any egg shell behind.
This article shows from Texas University discuss the fact that snakes can even eat a whole nest full of eggs and you can often fine the empty best with no egg shells at all when a snake has visited a next1.
Do snakes like egg shells?
Snakes can eat whole eggs, including their shells of small wild and pet birds including quails, finches, canaries and can raid nesting boxes of chickens. Often the whole egg will disappear but you can find broken eggs as well if the snake does not manage to whole it whole.
The snake aims to eat the internal contents of the egg but will benefit from the calcium in the shells so they are happy to consume the whole egg if they can.
Do eggshells repel snakes?
Crushed egg shells are thought to repel snakes as they will avoid slithering over the sharp pieces. However their effectiveness is questionable and you would need a large amount of egg shells to cover your yard to repel snakes.
Snake can instead be attracted to whole eggs in chicken or bird cages. To repel snakes try garlic and onion skins and stems. Snakes hate the smell and this can repel them from your backyard.
Check out this video for plants that will naturally deter snakes.
Top 5 ways to naturally deter snakes
Keep all weeds and grass short
Keeping the grass and weeds short in and around your yard will give snakes less areas to hide. They like sheltered areas to protect themselves from predators so keep your yard open and clear to naturally deter snakes.
Move old wood and tin off the ground
Snakes love to hide and live under any scraps of metal or timber you have left on the ground. Tin or metal will warm up making it very attractive for snakes and will also provide protection. Keep your yard clean and clear of rubbish that snakes can hide under.
Snakes love to eat rodents so control rodents to deter snakes. Keeping bird feed off the ground and using an enclosed feeder for your chickens can deter rodents and reduce the chance that snakes will want to be in your yard.
Do not leave food scraps around
Avoid leaving food scraps laying on top of garden beds or in compost bins without lids, including egg shells. These foods can attract rats, mice and large insects which snakes may want to eat.
Use mulch instead of rocks
Large rocks and pebbles will attract snakes as they warm up in the sun. Snakes will seek out these rock areas to lay and warm up. Instead use bark chips or wood mulch on your garden beds which can deter snakes due to their sharp edges and spikes.
Solid metal or timber fencing around your yard may be the only way to keep snakes out. The fencing will need to be buried beneath the soil to avoid snakes digging underneath the fencing and making their way in. Good, solid fencing can be a last resort to deter snakes from your yard.
What attracts snakes to your yard?
Rodents, warm compost piles, chickens and dark covered areas can attract snakes to your yard. Long grass and weeds can also attract snakes as it provides protection for them to hide and hunt rodents. Keep grass and weeds short in your yard and keep shrubs away from near your house.
Eggshells attract snakes – Summary
Eggshells can attract snakes if they still contain egg material, if they attract rodents or breaking down in your compost bin. Broken egg shells are thought to deter snakes but the amount that would be needed to keep them out of your yard completely doesn’t make practical sense.
Try the natural methods like keeping grass trimmed, keeping rodents away and avoid leaving trash on the ground. This will stop your yard looking like an attractive snake home.
1. Holmes, A., Johnson, T. The Snake Conundrum: Using Eggshell Evidence to Identify Quail Nest Predators, 2018, Texas A&M Natural Resources Institute, Accessed 21 July 2021, https://medium.com/wild-wonderings/the-snake-conundrum-using-eggshell-evidence-to-identify-quail-nest-predators-be71af6137e.
I am an accredited practicing dietitian, experienced gardener and a dedicated cook. I love writing and sharing my experience so you can learn from my successes and mistakes.