VALENCIA ( — Rattlesnakes have been making themselves at home on the baseball field of a high school in Valencia.

Since August 2012, coaches at West Ranch High School have used rakes and shovels to kill nine snakes on the baseball diamond.

The situation has left some students with the jitters.

“I would not (feel comfortable playing on the baseball field),” said Jason Pineda. “I’d be worried about my health.”

Other students, however, said rattlers are a part of life in the area.

Administrators said there has always been a problem with snakes, but it has recently gotten worse because there hasn’t been much rain in the area, and the rattlesnakes are looking for water.

“We’re looking at some fencing right now that is snake proof, as well as some pesticide. Our priority is the safety and security of our students and staff. We don’t want our coaches killing snakes, and we don’t want our baseball players or any other students worrying about stepping on snakes around campus,” said Gail Pinsker, a spokeswoman for the William S. Hart Union High School District.

Parents said they are concerned, but told KCAL9’s Rob Schmitt they understand why the snakes have traveled toward the school, which is located at the edge of developed land in Santa Clarita.

“The weather is getting hot. So it’s expected,” said a mother.


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