Cessnock District Rescue Squad received its first snake relocation call for the season on Friday.
The juvenile red-bellied black snake was located on a residential property at Bellbird. Squad volunteers captured the reptile and released it into bushland a short time later.
The squad receives 200-to-300 calls for assistance with relocating snakes each summer.
Squad spokesperson James Harris said there are actions people can take to reduce the risk of snakes gathering on their property, including keeping your lawn at a low height; not having piles of timber, bricks and other materials in your yard; and discarding grass clippings instead of making a pile (as the warmth creates a safe and warm environment for snakes).
“If you do happen to encounter a snake on your property don't panic,” Mr Harris said.
“Stay calm and have someone keep a continuous visual sight on the snake and call for assistance.
“People should be aware it is an offence to kill native snakes.
“Never judge a snake by its colour and treat all snakes as though they are venomous.”
The rescue squad has trained volunteers who can assist with the relocation of snakes. Call 4991 2444 if you require assistance.