From 1979 to 1990 we could almost count on at least one customer seeing a snake in the strawberry patch each year. During the 1990's, however, the customer snake sightings became very rare. While I still occasionally see a snake in the lower creek area in tall grass & weed cover, the snakes now seem to avoid the strawberry area to avoid being spotted by our airborne Snake Patrol
The years 2001 and 2002, however, were banner years for black snakes in our early raspberries. There was evidently a bumper supply of field mice - the favorite food of black snakes. We had a LOT more snake sightings by customers in 2001 ( 4 in the early raspberries alone where the hawks can't fly due to the wire trellis). From 2004 thru 2007 very few snake sightings occurred but....you never know.....we still have a good supply of field mice.