Squirrel-proofing Your Home
By Chris Williams on October 31, 2013.
If you live in an area where squirrels are abundant, chances are good that you’ve had a close encounter with a squirrel who has decided that your home will also become her new home. Never mind if she has to live in the attic, just turn up the heat please!
Squirrels will chew to create an opening wherever they find a weak point or an edge to start from. They require an opening about the size of an adult’s fist, and if one doesn’t exist, they have no problem creating it.They prefer to gnaw on soft, or rotting, or unpainted wood which is why many squirrel openings are located around the roof line in fascia boards or soffits. They’ll even chew through plastic or screens if that’s what it takes to get inside. What it takes to keep them out is squirrel-proofing. Squirrel-proofing means finding and sealing up any openings that squirrels are using to get inside, and reinforcing weak areas, screening and caulking possible future entry points, installing chimney caps, replacing rotting wood, etc.
These are just some of the typical entry points that squirrels will exploit: attic louvers or ventilators, joints of siding, eaves of roofs, knot-holes or woodpecker holes in siding, openings where utility wires or pipes enter buildings, chimneys and flashing around chimneys.
Squirrels can get onto roofs and into homes by using overhanging tree branches, following power lines, or by simply climbing up siding. These areas may need squirrel-proofing too, such as pruning back branches, removing ivy from walls, and installing guards on wires or cables.
Don’t Seal Squirrels Into Your Attic!
Don’t start sealing openings into your attic unless you’re absolutely certain that there is not a squirrel in there and, more importantly, that there are not baby squirrels. If you seal in an adult squirrel, you will have a real mess as it scrambles about, clawing and chewing, trying to create an exit hole. If you seal in baby squirrels, you will have an odor problem, and more, since the babies will die without mom (see Baby Squirrels in the Attic!). Professionals have methods for removing the squirrels safely before any squirrel-proofing work begins.
Even if you can successfully seal the squirrel’s entry hole, chances are good your squirrel will just gnaw another opening. It’s not easy to scare squirrels away, especially if they have started a nest.
Colonial Pest Control is licensed in MA and NH to do nuisance animal control. Our animal management program includes trapping and removing animals, combined with exclusion or pest-proofing to keep animals from getting inside in the first place. We use only quality, heavy-duty materials that are guaranteed to keep squirrels and other animals at bay for many years. Give Colonial a call.