Squirrels are such a familiar sight around our yards and in our trees that we often don’t give their presence a second thought. They normally live in the crooks of branches, tree hollows, or underground burrows, but it is not at all rare for them to find shelter in people’s houses. You may not be able to stop them from frolicking on your lawn, but you can certainly implement a few practices that will keep them from wanting to live in your house. If you’re looking for a good squirrel deterrent, the following suggestions are for you.
The number one way to protect a home from squirrels is to animal-proof the roof vents. Mushroom vents, gable vents, ridge vents, and attic fans are not designed to exclude animals seeking entry into an attic. While the insect screen covering them may be effective in keeping bugs out, it is not durable enough to withstand a squirrel chewing or pulling at it. ABC Wildlife offers a wide variety of squirrel deterrent devices that will prohibit squirrels from being able to enter your house through chimneys and vents. These devices are designed specifically to stop wildlife breach from occurring and are a key step in safeguarding your property.
Repair Roof Damage
Squirrels are rodents and are compelled to chew on things to keep their teeth shaved down. This means they’re likely to target areas of your home that are easier to chew. Inspect the roofline of your house for any areas that may have been weakened by water damage or rot. Check for leaks or any material that is not intact. Portions of a roof, trim, or fascia that are already impaired are softer and more susceptible to squirrel damage.
As odd as it may sound, landscaping can work well as a squirrel deterrent. Squirrels are excellent climbers, and while it can be a challenge to keep them off of a roof entirely, you can at least make accessibility more difficult. Keeping your branches trimmed to at least 6 feet from the house will eliminate a convenient path from the trees to your roof, which will make your house a less appealing living area.
Remove food and water sources from the property. If you have bird feeders and are not willing to remove them altogether, keep the area beneath the feeder clean of seeds. You can also try purchasing a squirrel-proof bird feeder or putting cayenne pepper into the seed mix. Birds don’t have the same taste receptors as squirrels and will not experience any kind of burning sensation. If you grow fruit or nut trees, do not allow any fruit to remain once it’s fallen. While squirrels may eat directly out of the tree, most animals wait for the fruit to ripen enough until it drops to the ground.
Following these simple suggestions may mean the difference between a safe, uncompromised home and a squirrel infestation. If you’re already experiencing a problem with squirrels, reach out to ABC Wildlife. We handle these types of situations on a daily basis. Our nuisance wildlife specialists know precisely how to remove the squirrels from your home, how to repair any damage created by their presence, and which animal-proofing devices will be the most effective squirrel deterrent. Follow this advice, and protect your property from animal damage.
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Vito Brancato is a wildlife specialist and educator with over 15 years of animal and pest management experience. He is a certified Wildlife Control Operator through the National Wildlife Control Operators Association and belongs to the National Pest Management Association and the Illinois Pest Control Association. He is an avid beekeeper and nature enthusiast.
Image courtesy of Yuri Levchenko via Flickr Creative Commons