Red Squirrel on a branch

Are Squirrels Becoming a Nuisance in Your Yard? 

April 1, 2021

Squirrels can be playful, frisky, and seriously fun to watch! Unfortunately, these bushy-tailed cousins of the rodent can also be irreverent and mischievous as they dig at your gardens, rifle through your trash, and cause general chaos around your bird feeder. Are squirrels becoming a huge problem in your yard, or worse yet, inside your house

Squirrels can cause more damage than one would think. Whether inside or outside, squirrels have the insatiable desire to chew and gnaw at all things edible and some things that are not-so-edible. Take a look at our brief list of dangers that squirrels can cause as well as some tips to prevent them from being attracted to your home in the first place. 

squirrel

Potential Damage from Squirrels 

Squirrels belong in nature and that is where they tend to thrive during the spring, summer, and fall months. Even when they are outside your home, they could potentially be causing some damage to your trees, garden, and plantings. 

Tree Stress 

Squirrels love trees, especially those with nuts and berries. Sadly, when squirrels are hunting for food and a nesting place, they often gnaw on tree bark and carve out areas inside of trees. This could cause some serious stress on the tree and eventually cause damage that could weaken the tree. 

Plant & Garden Damage 

When squirrels are hunting for food, they will take it wherever they can find it. That means your plantings, garden, and grassy areas are not safe. Not only will squirrels dig and gnaw at your gardens and plants, but then they bury their findings in your lawn! This can make a huge mess, especially for those of us who spend time tending to our gardens and manicuring our lawns. 

Garbage Messes 

Squirrels, like so many other wildlife, look for food in the most inconvenient locations for humans. The trash barrels that were meant to be clean and neat or the bird feeder that was meant for the birds around your home are not safe from the antics of squirrels looking for their next meal. 

Home Damage

Wreaking havoc outside your home is one thing, but if squirrels find their way into your attic or crawl spaces you have a whole different problem.  These nimble creatures can get into a home and begin nesting and chewing on all sorts of things in your attic. 

Unfortunately, this chewing could include the wiring for your home. Electrical fires have been known to be caused by chewing wildlife that just happened upon the wrong item to chew! 

squirrel

Tips to Prevent Squirrels from Becoming a Nuisance

While it is true that squirrels aren’t aggressive (usually), they can certainly cause some chaos along with potentially exposing family members to diseases like typhus, tularemia, plague, and ringworm. Here are a few tips to help keep these bold creatures from becoming a problem that you will need to call a wildlife expert to solve. 

  • Check chimney caps annually. 
  • Keep bird feeders in a location that they do not tempt squirrels. 
  • Remove sources of water and food from outside your home. 
  • Seal access to your attic such as soffits and openings in roofs. 
  • Plant items that squirrels hate such as snowdrops, allium or hyacinth. 
  • Remove the food that attracts squirrels. The sight and smell of fallen fruit, nuts and seeds lures squirrels. 
  • Clean your gutters regularly. 

 

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