Grey Squirrel Removal Tips: Homeowners Infuriating Invaders
Few animals have benefited from suburban sprawl as much as gray squirrels have. Squirrels normally inhabit forests, but they are now more common in residential areas than their natural habitats.
While squirrels aren’t dangerous animals, they can be quite destructive, so you should do everything you can to discourage them from moving onto your property. A wildlife professional can help you remove squirrels once they take up residence, but there are a number of proactive things you can do on your own to help keep them away.
Swap Out the Seed in Your Bird Feeders
Squirrels are notorious thieves of the seeds people stock in their bird feeders. It isn’t uncommon for a would-be birdwatcher to look out at their feeder in hopes of seeing a cardinal or wren, only to see a half dozen squirrels eating the seed as fast as they can. Not only does this force you to refill your feeders more often, but it provides a great food source, which can cause the local squirrel population to explode.
Fortunately, this is an easy problem to rectify. Instead of filling your feeders with sunflower seeds or peanuts, fill them with safflower or nyjer seed. Squirrels find these seeds unpalatable, and will soon stop visiting the feeders entirely.
Remove Potential Food Sources
Squirrels move out of the forest and into the suburbs for one simple reason: food. While the forest may present them with a bounty of acorns, the average backyard contains a litany of edible items. Fruits and vegetables growing in your garden, mushrooms growing on the lawn and bits of food scattered around the bottom of trashcans all represent attractive food sources to a hungry squirrel, and these are often tastier than nuts and seeds.
You may not be willing to cut down your favourite apple tree or dig up your vegetable garden, but you should try to limit the number of food sources your yard provides to the local squirrel population. This should help encourage the squirrels to look for places with more food.
Batten Down the Hatches
Squirrels typically build their nests (called dreys) in the branches of trees or within tree hollows, but they won’t hesitate to sneak into the walls or attic of your home instead. Once there, they often produce a litter of young, thereby increasing the local squirrel population and exacerbating your problem. It can be difficult to deal with such problems once they occur, and you’ll have to wait until the young squirrels grow large enough to move out, before sealing up the holes.
Foam is sometimes all that is needed to seal up access points, but some squirrels are more industrious than others. In such cases, you’ll likely need to install wire-mesh to deny the squirrels access.
Trim Back Your Trees
One of the ways squirrels access your home is via the tree branches overhanging your roof. They will climb up the tree, move out over your house and drop down to the roof below. Once there, they can access virtually any part of your home they like.You can still have trees growing near your home, but you just want to make sure that the trunk and branches are at least 10 feet away from the roof line. Branches that grow over your home are not a problem if they are at least 10 feet above the roof.
Enlist the Help of a Good Dog
Squirrels spend most of their lives watching for predators, and they often avoid the places that predators frequent. While you may not think of your toy poodle as a dangerous predator, the local squirrels surely will.
You never want to endanger your dog by leaving him unattended, but a fenced backyard with a dog will generally have fewer problems with squirrels than a similar house without one. Don’t worry that your dog will hurt the squirrels, your dog is highly unlikely to catch one – but that doesn’t mean he won’t spend hours each day chasing them.
Generally speaking, the best way to keep the local squirrel population in check is to make your property less hospitable to them. Always contact Squirrel Removal Specialists at the first sign of a squirrel-related problem to limit the damage they cause and save yourself some money in the process.