When we get calls for wildlife, it is usually because an invading animal has done something that is hard to ignore, such as a skunk smell filling the entire house, a snake bite, a squirrel bumping around in the attic, or a raccoon spreading trash all over the yard – several times. But, a wildlife problem can sometimes be subtle. It may be connected to a lice infestation, flea infestation, or flu-like illness that is misdiagnosed. It could be random ticks found on a pet or a child. There are many secondary issues that can arise from a wildlife infestation. That is why it is vital to take measures to prevent wildlife problems before they happen. Here are some ideas.
Are animals coming for the food?
Controlling food sources is the best way to reduce animal activity in your yard. Some food sources are obvious. Others are not quite so obvious.
- Gardens. Many animals eat vegetables. If you have a garden, we probably don’t have to tell you that a fence is a good way to protect it. But, a fence will not be effective if it does not go at least a foot underground. Most vegetable-eating animals can dig a tunnel. It is also a good idea to keep your garden away from the exterior walls of your home, so animals don’t explore your walls in search of harborage.
- Berry bushes and fruit trees. These should be dealt with in the same way you would protect a garden.
- Foliage and Twigs. There isn’t a lot you can do about this food source, but the good news is that most pest animals don’t eat these. But, you may attract deer and other wildlife into your yard with these if you don’t have a fence. And this can bring ticks, fleas, and other parasites in where your pets can pick them up.
- Feeders. If you have a bird feeder, or some other kind of feeder, it may attract more than the animal you are targeting. If you have a feeder in your yard, make sure it is tamper-proof. And, do you best to make sure no seed lays on the ground where animals can nibble on it and get curious about where that food came from.
- Trash. You might not be able to find anything appetizing to eat in your trash cans, but wild animals can. They’re not quite as choosy as humans. It is important to make sure all of your exterior trash cans have a tight lid with a good seal. This will keep smells in and animals out. It may also be necessary to place your trash cans in a place where they can’t get knocked over, and to secure the lids with a bungee cord, especially if the animal you’re trying to keep out is a raccoon.
- Bugs. If you have conditions in your yard that make bugs plentiful, you will be providing a meal for many wild animals. Reduce bugs by keeping twigs, leaf clutter, dead trees and other organic materials cleaned up.
Are animals coming for a drink?
Many pest animals will establish their home near a water source. If you have water in your yard, it will be an attractant for wildlife.
- Fix obstructed or broken gutters to prevent water from accumulating near your home. This will also help you prevent damage to the wood of your home, which can create the conditions for wood-destroying organisms to invade.
- Fill in areas where rainwater runs back toward your home and accumulates. All rainwater should flow away from your foundation.
- If you have a bird bath, you should be aware that it can give a drink to animals that may make themselves a pest.
Are animals finding a safe place to live?
If your yard provides objects for animals to hide inside or burrow under they will be happy to live near you.
- Keep yard clutter to a minimum.
- Make sure your exterior walls are sealed.
- Protect vulnerable areas with some kind of fencing material, like chicken wire. This will keep tunneling animals from getting under your shed, garage, porch, and foundation.
When animals invade, call an animal control professional like ChemTec Pest Control. Our wildlife control specialists don’t just safely and humanely remove invading animals, they apply advanced protocols to monitor for activity, address pest pressures, educate on habitat modifications, and install exclusions to keep animals out. For complete protection from wildlife problems, reach out to us for fast, responsive animal control services.