Raccoon Control - Identifying Raccoon DamageRaccoons are intelligent, fascinating creatures, and they’re an important contributor to our natural habitat, helping to keep down pest populations by eating rodents and insects.  But raccoons also have a tendency to wreak havoc wherever they go.  Ripped shingles and attic vents, ruined attic insulation, and torn-up lawns and gardens are just a few of the problems facing people with a raccoon on their property.  These destructive habits make raccoon control is a constant struggle in Northern Illinois.

Raccoon Damage

Shingles and Roofing Material – People often underestimate just how strong raccoons are.  A raccoon has very little difficulty clawing right through shingles and wood to create a huge hole in your roof.  They want very much to access the safety and security of your attic, and there is little that will stop them from doing this.  Aside from leaving your home vulnerable to weather exposure, this hole will allow heat to escape, causing problems with your energy efficiency.  It can also lead to an insect or squirrel problem since it’s essentially an open door to any species looking for shelter.

Roof Vents and Attic Fans – Another common entry point into the attic are roof vents.  These vents rarely have more than a simple piece of screen covering them, and a raccoon can tear the screen away and bend the metal of the vent until there is an opening large enough for them to fit through.  There have also been cases where a raccoon has bent the blades of an attic fan, leaving them unable to turn with the motor still running.  The motor then overheats, causing a very dangerous fire hazard.

Attic Insulation – Once the raccoon has gained access to your attic, it will ruin the insulation.  Not only will it rip it up to create a comfortable den site, it will designate certain areas of your attic as latrine sites, contaminating the insulation with urine and feces.  The potential for the spread of disease through this waste material poses a dire health risk to you and your family.  If this happens in your home, it is absolutely necessary that you contact a company like ABC Wildlife for raccoon control and  insulation replacement.

Lawn and Garden – In addition to attics, raccoons are fond of denning under porches, stoops, decks, sheds, and buildings and will dig out burrows beneath these structures.  They ruin landscaping by rolling back freshly-laid sod and ripping up lawns looking for insect grubs, and if you have a vegetable garden, they will eat their way right through it.  Raccoons are also well-known for their ability to get into trash cans and spread litter all over your yard.

Health Risks – Raccoons are carriers of a number of diseases and parasite.  Rabies, raccoon roundworm, and leptospirosis are all dangerous illnesses transmitted by raccoons.  They also host parasites like fleas, ticks, and mites that can spread to you and your family.

What Can You Do?

Look for signs of a raccoon presence on your property.  If you hear noises in your attic, go outside and walk the perimeter of your house to see if you notice anything unusual.  Are there any torn shingles on the ground, holes in the roof, or bent attic vents?  Do you see areas of your yard or garden that look like they’ve been damaged?  Are there any holes dug out beneath your house, shed, or deck?  If so, call a professional raccoon control specialist at ABC Wildlife.  Our technicians have years of experience dealing with raccoon problems on a daily basis and know the best techniques for removing them from your property and keeping them away.  We are experts at repairing the damage caused by raccoons and offer a number of remediation services like insulation replacement, animal-proof vent caps, and screen-ups to get your house back to its safe animal-free state.  If you know that a raccoon is damaging your property, don’t wait until it becomes and even larger issue.  An ABC Wildlife is waiting to talk to you today at (847) 870-7175.

Image courtesy of Triker-Sticks via Flickr creative commons.

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