Proper roof venting is critical to maintaining a healthy attic and extending the lives of roofs and shingles. One thing roof vents don’t do a good job of keeping out is urban wildlife. Raccoons, squirrels, birds, mice and bats all use roof vents as a point of entry into attics. They are able to detect the flow of air from the attic and recognize that warmth is waiting on the other side.
During an inspection of a client’s roof in Ottawa our technician noticed tunnels in the snow. After getting a look and dusting the snow out of the way it became clear what was going on.
Squirrels had recently chewed a hole in a roof vent cover. Our technician could tell that the entry point was fairly new because there are still chewed up pieces of the vent next to the hole.
When animals break into vents, they make their home in the attic below, as was the case with these squirrels. Squirrels like roof vents because their height provides protection from predators and humans and they provide access to an attic space \ to remain warm and dry through cold Ottawa winters.
One of the primary reasons female squirrels build nests is to raise their young. Squirrels breed twice per year and babies are born after a 44 day gestation period. In general, the first litters of babies arrive in Ottawa around mid March and early May with the second litters are born in July and August. The average litter contains between two and six babies.
Squirrels are messy animals that fill attics with urine and feces that can contaminate and damage attic insulation, vapour barrier and drywall. Another issue is that the hole they’ve made in the vent allows water and snow into the attic. Water damage from melting snow and rain can cause thousands of dollars of damage to a home. Other animals such as bats, mice and birds may even take the open hole as a welcoming sign and make their home in the attic.
Skedaddle Humane Wildlife Control removed the squirrels humanely and then replaced the damaged roof vent with a new one. We then covered the vent with a heavy gauge screen so that air can escape but the squirrels and other wildlife are locked out.
A thorough inspection of the attic was also performed to ensure that there was no damage done to the insulation, structural wood or vapor barrier.
If you have roof vents, save yourself from future wildlife invasions and have them vent screened as soon as possible. Taking a preventative approach is much more affordable than having to deal with a ruined roof vent and a full blown wildlife infestation.
Call Skedaddle Humane Wildlife Control today to have your home inspected for wildlife entry points and vulnerabilities: 1.888.592.0387.
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