Squirrel Removal in Ottawa | Skedaddle Wildlife Control skip to main content

SQUIRREL REMOVAL PROCESS

ASSESS AND REMOVE

Assess and Remove

Our comprehensive 50 point home inspection is designed to determine squirrel entry points and home damage. The attic is a common den site for squirrels where they gain accessing by chewing holes or slipping in between building materials. We then use hands-on removal techniques to humanely evict the squirrels.

clear and clean

Clear and Clean

Squirrels are notorious for creating large, messy nests within their den site and causing damage through chewing. Skedaddle will thoroughly clear away any nesting material and debris from the den and clean up the mess left behind. We can also replace soiled insulation and damaged ductwork if required.

PREVENT AND PROTECT

Prevent and Protect

Our final step is making sure your home is protected, not only against the current intruders, but all the other squirrels in your neighbourhood. To keep them out we will secure the entry points we identified, as well any other potential vulnerabilities.

 


Reviews From Our Ottawa Clients

Squirrels in Ottawa

 

The two most common squirrel species in Ottawa are the eastern gray squirrel and the red squirrel. Both of these rodents traditionally make their home in trees, but have become quite adjusted to urban life. They are agile animals, with back legs that are double-jointed, allowing them to maneuver easily through tree branches or along telephone and utility wires. They are adept at finding their way into Ottawa homes, using their teeth to chew through soffits, fascia and roof vents. Squirrels are clever and they understand that your attic provides the perfect location to build their nest. Unfortunately, once inside, they can cause significant damage and create health hazards. For help evicting squirrels from your home, enlist the services of Skedaddle’s expert Ottawa squirrel removal team.

Understanding Where to Spot Ottawa Squirrels

In Ottawa, denser populations of urban squirrels tend to be found in areas with mature tree canopies. These high-up and hidden areas provide safe routes of travel, access to food and a place for squirrels to build nests. Despite ongoing developments throughout Ottawa and its suburbs, pockets of mature trees can be found along the Rideau and Ottawa rivers, throughout the Greenbelt, and in older communities surrounding the downtown core.

Even though Arnprior is home to the largest tree in Ontario, a 47-metre tall eastern white pine tree estimated to be over 200 years old, the communities most in need of squirrel removal services are those that are those home to dense human populations. The more houses there are, the more opportunity for squirrels to get into trouble. Skedaddle Ottawa receives the majority of its squirrel removal calls from older communities in the city, such as; the Glebe, Rockcliffe Park, Alta Vista and Westboro. These neighbourhoods, and those like them, are covered by mature tree canopies and criss-crossed by overhead utility wires that provide squirrels with both and a safe way to traverse busy streets. Trees and overhead wires also have the added benefit of making it easier for squirrels to get on to roofs and find vulnerabilities that they can exploit to gain access to attics.

In contrast, newly developed areas in Barrhaven, Stittsville and Orleans, where there are fewer mature trees and telephone and hydro lines are buried, are much less appealing to squirrels in Ottawa. In the years immediately following construction, homeowners in new communities are likely to see relatively few squirrels. Though squirrels will still be drawn to bird feeders and other food sources their numbers are typically limited because of a lack of den site options.The same is also true for areas of Ottawa zoned for commercial and industrial. You are not likely to encounter too many squirrels in and among the manufacturing facilities, warehouses and dealerships that dominate along St. Laurent Boulevard south of the 417.

Squirrels Chew Their Way Through Ottawa

Housing and construction styles are also an indicator of where squirrels are most likely to get into attics. Many older neighbourhoods, particularly old Ottawa South, the Glebe and Sandy Hill are not only home to a lot of squirrels, the houses themselves make it easier for squirrels to gain entry.

Where today builders favour aluminum for many roof features, previous generations used wood for things like soffit and fascia. This exposed wood is part of the beauty and character of the homes built in the early 20th century but when damaged by weather or neglect, is especially susceptible to the chewing of determined squirrels. Unfortunately for homeowners the height and steep pitched roofs of Ottawa’s century homes often make them difficult and dangerous to access to identify squirrel entry points. Houses in these parts of Ottawa were built so close together that in many cases erecting a ladder safely can make repairs a challenge. Skedaddle’s squirrel removal team is trained and equipped with the necessary safety equipment to assess the damage and entry points created by squirrels.

Squirrels are rodents and when living inside an attic they are known to chew and damage electrical wiring. It should come as no surprise then that in 2021, over 4,000 residents in Somerset Ward lost power due to, what Hydro Ottawa termed, “squirrel interference”.

Squirrels use their special chewing talent to gain access to the attic. Once they have chewed their way inside, they are capable of causing tremendous damage through their activity and chewing. Not only can squirrels create fire hazards by chewing electrical wires, their teeth can destroy important structural elements of a home like roof trusses and supports. The holes chewed by squirrels to enter attics can allow large amounts of snow and rain water into the home, resulting in mould and severe water damage. These entry points are, in many cases, impossible to spot without getting access to the roof to inspect roof vents, soffits and fascias that provide squirrels with an avenue inside. The longer squirrels are allowed to live inside a home, the more damage they are capable of creating. If insulation has been spared from water damage, squirrels will be sure to trample it down and leave droppings and urine behind. Not only can this create a horrible odour throughout the home, squirrels feces carry a variety of diseases that are transmittable to humans. Our Ottawa technicians will clean and decontaminate your attic of any hazardous bacteria left behind by squirrels and if necessary, provide attic restoration services.

Ottawa Squirrels Through the Seasons

During fall squirrels are very active packing on weight to help them ride out winter. In 2015, during a particularly late start to winter, biologists at Carleton University observed that Ottawa squirrels might have been fatter than usual in part due to abundant yields of fruit, maple keys and black walnuts that were available for longer. When squirrels head into winter well fed, they survive winter in greater numbers and that usually means more squirrels the following spring when babies are born.

In fact, Ottawa is near the northern range of eastern grey squirrels and there are a number of behaviours that help them survive the cold winter. One of them is using the attic space of a home to create their dens. Squirrels do not hibernate, but their activity is greatly reduced. Instead, they enter into a related state called torpor. This state produces similar biological effects, but its duration is shorter. In torpor, squirrel metabolism slows way down, body temperature drops and heart rate lowers, all of which helps to conserve energy and reduce the need for calories. They require a secluded warm place to rest the cold days away, which leads many of them to the inviting attic space of many Ottawa homeowners. If temperatures rise above freezing, squirrels may head out in search of the food they’ve stashed during the warmer months. Regardless of the time of year, they are most often heard by homeowners in the early morning as the sun rises and rarely through the night when they are likely to be sleeping.

The arrival of spring brings on a whole new set of challenges for any squirrel removal in Ottawa. The space above your ceiling offers them an ideal place to stash away babies until they are old enough to leave the nest on their own. It also means that noises that were heard on and off during winter become more consistent and much more intense during spring with the arrival of babies.

Female squirrels can give birth to two litters of babies, one in spring and another in early summer. Finding, removing and reuniting immobile squirrel babies with their mother takes skill and experience. They need to be removed by hand because they are too young to be trapped. Many mother squirrels during this time are trapped and relocated by homeowners who later discover she had a litter of babies in the attic. Failing to take babies into account when removing squirrels could lead to needless additional damage or an inhumane death for the mother and babies.

Squirrels are rodents and when living inside an attic they are known to chew and damage electrical wiring. It should come as no surprise then that in 2021, over 4,000 residents in Somerset Ward lost power due to, what Hydro Ottawa termed, “squirrel interference”.

Skedaddle’s team of Ottawa squirrel removal experts offer customized removal services that will ensure mothers and their babies are removed together and prevented from re-entering. Our knowledge of squirrel behaviour and activity means we understand how determined squirrels get into attics and what it takes to keep them out for good. Squirrels will be in Ottawa for as long as there are trees and bird feeders in the city and that’s why the best way to protect your home is by squirrel-proofing your home.

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Squirrel Facts

Squirrels are not aggressive, and the chances that one will bite you are slim unless you attempt to handle them. They do not carry rabies, but they can transmit other diseases, most often through their feces and urine. Effective wildlife control measures for squirrels include safe and humane removal, proper cleaning and clearing of contaminated areas and exclusionary measures to prevent future unwanted visitors.

FACT:

Squirrels are rodents and, as such, their teeth never stop growing. They have a consistent need to chew hard surfaces to keep their teeth in good shape. Unfortunately, this can lead to a lot of structural damage to your attic during their stay.

FACT:

The placement of squirrels’ eyes gives them a wide viewing range, and their peripheral vision is as keen as their front field of view. This trait allows them to see approaching predators or humans who are trying to sneak up on them.

FACT:

Unlike eastern grey squirrels that scatter-hoard their food in different locations, red squirrels are considered larder-hoarders meaning they stash their food in a central location. Conifer seeds, like those found in pine cones form the basis of their winter diet.

FACT:

Eastern grey squirrels are not particularly territorial when it comes to other squirrels. In urban areas their home ranges overlap and they will often share food sources and den sites.

FACT:

There are two species of flying squirrel in Ontario, the northern and southern flying squirrel. Their ranges overlap in the Ottawa area and both can be found in the region but they rarely occupy homes and buildings. Flying squirrels actually glide instead of fly. The only mammals that can truly fly are bats.

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