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Wild Life

raccoons and opossums

Wild Life

Wild Life Facts and Information

Wild animals like raccoons and opossums can pose a threat to homes as they can cause structural damage, create entry points for other pests, and create fire hazards. It may be tempting to remove these animals yourself, but it’s important to understand the risks and take safety precautions. Some of the most common wild animals that may enter homes include bats, skunks, and raccoons, which can cause problems like ripping ducts, destroying insulation, and gnawing wires. However, it’s important to note that these animals may be carrying rabies, a potentially lethal illness that can be transmitted to humans. Therefore, it’s crucial to exercise caution and seek professional help if needed. To learn more about the various types of wildlife that may invade your property and how to avoid them, read on in this condensed pest guide. 

Armadillos: With their thick, bony plates covering their head, back, legs, and tail, they are easily recognizable mammals found in the southern United States. They thrive in warm climates and are beneficial to have around since they feed on pests like termites, fire ants, and spiders. These creatures use their strong legs and sharp claws to excavate tunnels for food and shelter on your property. Unfortunately, armadillos’ tunneling activities can create large holes in yards or pastures that may cause harm to people or larger animals, such as horses and cattle, which can be costly to repair. Armadillos are not typically aggressive animals, but they may carry disease-causing pathogens like leprosy and rabies, which is why it is best to let professionals handle their removal. 

Bats- Flying creatures known as bats are active at night and seek out dim, secluded areas to roost. According to the CDC, bats are responsible for the majority of human rabies deaths in the United States. Additionally, histoplasmosis, a lung disease, can be caused by the fungus present in bat guano. 

Bats are drawn to dead trees in the vicinity and can enter homes through open windows, chimneys, or any gaps or crevices in the roof or siding. It is important to take necessary precautions to keep bats out of your living spaces, as they can carry harmful diseases and cause property damage. 

Groundhog: Groundhogs are a common nuisance for fields and vegetable gardens as they often consume or damage produce and landscape flora while leaving behind large holes in the ground. Although they are not known for their speed, they can dash quickly to their dens once they sense danger. 

Opossums: The North American opossum, also known as a “possum,” is the only marsupial in the region. This unique mammal has a distinctive feature in that it possesses a pouch on its abdomen, which is exclusive to marsupials. Typically, solitary and active at night, opossums are slow-moving creatures that produce a repugnant odor as a defense mechanism or feign death to avoid predators. 

It’s essential to seek professional help when dealing with opossums as they may carry pathogens that can cause various diseases, such as toxoplasmosis and trichomoniasis, leading to parasitic infections. Opossums may also harbor external parasites such as mites, lice, fleas, and ticks. Their diet is varied, and they may forage on trash cans, woodpiles, and fallen berries. 

Pigeons: Pigeons are ubiquitous in urban and rural areas, and their droppings can cause significant problems. Not only do the droppings create an unpleasant odor and unsightly appearance, but they can also speed up the deterioration of buildings. Moreover, the droppings carry pathogens that may cause histoplasmosis, a respiratory illness that can cause fever, cough, and fatigue in humans. 

Preventing pigeons from roosting on or near your home involves getting rid of their sources of food and water. Since pigeons are natural scavengers, they may root through your garbage for food. Proper garbage disposal by securely bagging it and ensuring that lids are tightly closed can prevent them from accessing it. Similarly, adequate removal of leftover food from outdoor eating areas can also help eliminate any potential food sources for pigeons. 

Raccoons: Raccoons, easily recognized by their grey fur and black “mask” around their eyes, are nocturnal animals that are rarely seen during the day. They can be found throughout the continental U.S. but are more abundant in the forested eastern regions. Raccoons are opportunistic eaters and will consume a wide variety of items, including berries, nuts, bugs, mice, eggs, and even snakes. They are also known to scavenge dumpsters and garbage cans for food scraps. 

When raccoons take up residence in or around your home, they can become a nuisance by making loud noises and scattering trash. They have been known to cause damage to walls, floorboards, and shingles. If you suspect a raccoon population on your property, you may see signs such as droppings that may contain parasites dangerous to humans and tracks or claw marks near drainage pipes, gutters, decks, and lawn furniture. 

Tree squirrels- Tree squirrels are named for their preference for woodlands. Their bushy tails and coloration, which ranges from reddish-brown to gray, make them easy to identify. These common squirrels can often be seen scurrying across lawns and burying food for later. 

Tree squirrels build nests, gather food, and avoid predators in areas with lots of foliage. If they enter your home, they can cause a variety of problems, including noise in the walls and attic, damage to the siding, broken bird feeders, and chewed wires. They can also damage attic insulation. 

Skunks- Skunks are recognizable by their black, furry bodies, adorned with a thick white stripe extending from their head down their back and tail. Although most skunks have stripes, some have spots. 

Despite their cute appearance, skunks have strong legs and sharp claws that they use for digging. Though generally non-aggressive, they will warn predators by lifting their tails when threatened. If the predator does not back off, the skunk sprays a pungent odor from a gland beneath its tail, which can reach up to 10 feet away and be smelled from even further away. 

Skunks can be beneficial to your property by eating common garden insects, but they can also cause damage by digging holes in the lawn while searching for food or shelter. This digging can cause significant harm to foundations, electrical cables, and plumbing. 

Sparrow: Sparrows often build their nests in and around human-inhabited areas, adding to the noise pollution. The birds’ constant pecking can create fire hazards and pose health risks, and their droppings may contain disease-causing pathogens. 

Starlings: With their abundant droppings, starlings are notorious for causing extensive damage to structures, vehicles, equipment, and property. They are considered an invasive bird species. 

FAQs About Wild Life 

How to prevent and get rid of wildlife animals in my yard?

Preventing and getting rid of wildlife animals in your yard can be challenging, but there are several steps you can take: 

  • Remove food sources: Make sure to clean up any food sources that may attract wildlife to your yard. This includes not leaving pet food outside, securing your trash cans, and cleaning up any fallen fruit from trees. 
  • Remove hiding places: Clear away any brush, woodpiles, and other areas where wildlife may hide. 
  • Seal entrances: Seal any holes or gaps in your home’s foundation, walls, and roof. Make sure to check for any entry points in your attic or crawlspace. 
  • Use repellents: There are several types of animal repellents available, including sprays and electronic devices. Some repellents are specifically designed for certain animals, so make sure to choose the right one. 
  • Install physical barriers: Fences, netting, and other barriers can help keep wildlife out of your yard. 

If you already have wildlife in your yard, there are several ways to remove them: 

  • Hire a professional such as Grizz Pest Management: Wildlife removal companies specialize in humanely removing animals. 
  • Live traps: Live traps can be used to capture animals and release them into the wild. 
  • Scare tactics: Loud noises or flashing lights can be effective in scaring off some animals. 
  • Repellents: Some repellents can be used to deter animals from your yard. 

It’s important to remember never to try to handle or remove wildlife yourself, as many animals can be dangerous and carry diseases.

Why should I Choose Grizz Pest Management For Your Wildlife Control?

Grizz Pest Management is an experienced and reliable service provider for all your wildlife management needs. We conduct a thorough property inspection to identify all possible entry and nesting points and offer customized solutions to address the wildlife problem. We guarantee ongoing protection and offer regular check-ins to remove trapped pests and seal any new entry points. Our services also include developing a preventative plan to ensure that the wildlife does not re-enter your home. Contact us today, and let us help you with your wildlife problem.