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Why Wildlife Loves Concrete Steps

Whether it is a mouse, a skunk, or a raccoon, the little critter walking by your house looking for a place to bed down has their little house-hunting wish list in hand, and concrete steps hit all the good points.

Shelter? Check. Low to the ground, hard to see under, and usually closed in on three sides, concrete steps are a great shelter. If you can’t see what is living under there, they want to keep living there. They can bed down for the night, build a great nest and raise a family, knowing that they are unseen and safe except for the little hole they use to come and go by.

Dry? Check. Because of the closed concrete top, when it rains it pours… off the top and away from the nest. In a well-built and maintained home, the surrounding ground should be graded away from the home, meaning any water that runs off will keep going… away from the nest and away from your home.

Accessible? Check. Front steps on most new homes are bound on three sides, but float on the front. The back and one side will run along an exterior wall and one side is usually an extension of the foundation, but the front is wide open to any animal that can squeeze through or dig a little bit.

wildlife and front steps

A juvenile skunk poking it’s head out from under a deck.

Den sites are communal

Homeowners are often very surprised to learn just how communal den sites can be among urban wildlife species. Most wildlife activity around a home or property happens at night and goes entirely unnoticed.

For instance, while a raccoon and skunk might not be found under a front step at the exact same moment the species that happens to be occupying your front step can easily change from night to night. The exception to this occurs during spring when litters of babies are involved and mothers tend to spend more time in one place than they would during the rest of the year.

baby skunks

A little of baby skunks removed from below a back patio.

Exclusion is Key

This is why exclusion is so critical to long-term and effective wildlife control. Trapping in and removing a single animal does nothing to prevent the lure of the front step from attracting other wildlife in the neighbourhood.

You might be ok with a raccoon tucking underneath the front step but tomorrow night it could be very well be a skunk and the consequences there are much greater. If a skunk sprays under the front step the odour can easily find its way into the home and won’t dissipate for months.

The key to getting the animals out from under these steps permanently is to block access. A Skedaddle Humane Wildlife Control technician will be able to tell you what work might be required to get the animals out and to keep them out, and to make you aware of potential issues that may be unseen behind the steps.

It all begins with a thorough inspection performed by a professional who knows what to look out for and the steps needed to solve the problem right the first time. Call us today! 1.888.592.0387

Proudly Servicing: Ottawa, Montreal, Hamilton, Burlington, Oakville, Mississauga, Brampton, Guelph, Kitchener-Waterloo and Niagara Region

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About the author:Founder of Skedaddle Humane Wildlife Control in 1989. Canada's largest urban wildlife removal and exclusion company. Industry leader and pioneer. Split, Scram, Scoot! However you want to say it, Skedaddle Humane Wildlife Control has helped over 200,000 home owners and businesses safely and effectively resolve their wildlife issues. Happy to discuss business and franchising opportunities

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