Signs You Have a Wildlife ProblemIt’s not always immediately obvious that you have a problem with wildlife entering your home. Perhaps you’ve heard noises coming from inside the walls but you’re not sure if something’s actually in there. Perhaps you think you’ve seen something, but wonder if it was just your imagination. Some signs you might have an issue with the wildlife include:
- Dug-Up Spots Outside – Animals such as skunks may burrow under your house to get to the insects and grubs they eat. You might notice an area that has been dug, going under the deck, the porch or another area around your home. You also could see an area where the grass has been torn up or there’s a very distinct odor indicating you have a skunk problem.
- Noises in the Attic – If raccoons have invaded your home, you’ll probably hear sounds in your attic at night. Raccoons with babies may make more of a ruckus, as young raccoons like to “chat.” You might think you’re hearing a puppy, but it’s most likely a baby raccoon. If you hear the same kinds of sounds during the day, there’s a chance you have squirrels nesting in the attic.
- Droppings or Grease – Rats will leave droppings almost everywhere they go. If you have rats in your house, you could find droppings in the kitchen or in other areas where the rodents can get access to water and food. There may also be greasy, dirty spots on the walls close to your floor, as rat bodies tend to leave marks.
Damage That Wildlife Could CauseWhen a house is being used as a home for any type of wildlife, it is likely to experience a certain amount of damage. The amount is based on how many animals live there, how aggressive they are and how much access to food they have within the home. Possible damage includes:
- Shredded electrical wiring due to animals chewing on it
- Destroyed ducts from wildlife pulling them apart
- Beams that have become weak from being gnawed on
- Ruined drainage systems, or systems blocked by nests
- Torn-up insulation from wildlife pulling it apart to use as nesting material
- The possibility of exposure to diseases in your home
- Decreased structural integrity of the foundation
Avoiding Wildlife InvasionsOne of the most important things you can do about wildlife in your home is to stay away. Wild animals are not your friends and they’re not your pets. They often carry diseases that can be detrimental to the health of your family, so you should never try to catch them. To avoid attracting wildlife to your home:
- Always keep a lid on your garbage can
- Inspect your foundation and cover up any holes that you find
- Put bird food in a feeder that catches any spills
- Put a chicken-wire fence around your garden