Real Christmas trees are have that awesome smell of nature that most associate with the Christmas season, but if you think you smell something weird like cucumbers near your tree, that's a bad sign. In fact, if you do smell cucumbers once your Christmas tree is set up, it's best you get yourself and your pets out of the house and call an expert, because you most likely have a surprise visitor hiding in your tree.

Bauble Ornament in a real Christmas tree

We told you back in September about how if you smell cucumbers in your garage, then you probably have a similar visitor, and it's time to get out of the garage as soon as possible.

Of course, that unwelcome visitor is a venomous snake.

Venomous Snakes in Iowa

Prairie RattleSnake

Iowa is no stranger to venomous snakes, as there are a few well known and some lesser known species that can be found in the Hawkeye State.

According to the Iowa DNR, there are four native species of snake that can be found in our state:

  • Copperhead
  • Cottonmouth
  • Timber Rattlesnake
  • Massasauga

When threatened, some of these snakes will release a scent from their glands that smells close to cucumbers. Speficically, that vegetable smell comes from the highly venomous rattlesnakes and copperheads, says.

stephen bowling

Remember when we told you about checking your tree for little brown lumps? It's similar to what could happen here.

In all honesty, when my boss suggested writing this, I thought I'd do it as a joke, but it turns out it actually happens, like with this family who found a snake slithering out of their Christmas tree. 

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In 2017, Safer Brand found that an average real Christmas tree has about 25,000 bugs in it. With all of those insects and rodents possibly in your tree, it makes sense that snakes would sneak in to try and find a snack.

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Here's some quick

  1. Get rid of the tree. Especially if it has snakes/smells like cucumbers. Buy a fake one anyway, they look pretty real anymore, and you don't have to worry about this kind of stuff.
  2. Before putting up your tree, leave it in the garage for a few days for snakes and bugs to get out.
  3. Give your tree a good shake. That'll really get the snakes, bugs, and other animals out of there.

If one of those four snakes end up being in your tree, you'll find out from the cucumber smell, or when you stick your hands between the branches to hang some ornaments.

Stay out of the hospital this Christmas season!

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