They might be bright-eyed and bushy-tailed, but squirrels are among the most widespread rodents across the globe. They dash across our lawns, scurry up our trees, and eventually claw their way into our home’s attics and crawl spaces until we have a full-on infestation. As homeowners, learning how to get rid of squirrels in your house is imperative to your home’s structure and integrity.
Trying to deter squirrels from house and other structures is not an easy task. They invade homes, eat vegetation, and ultimately destroy landscaping. This is only the start of the damage.
If they are lucky enough to find their way inside through a broken chimney cap or damaged soffits, they build nests, and the number of squirrels multiplies.
Soon they chew through sidings, eaves, insulation, and wiring. If you suspect a squirrel problem, it’s time you learn how to scare squirrels away from your house.
- What are Squirrels?
- How to Get Rid of Squirrels in Your House
- How to Deter Squirrels from House
- How to Scare Squirrels Away from Your House
- Setting up a Squirrel Trap
- Making a DIY Squirrel Repellent
- How to Get Rid of Squirrels in the Attic
- Poisoning Squirrels
- Seal Off Entry Points
- Purchasing Motion-Activated Products
What are Squirrels?
Squirrels are agile rodents found on every continent except Antarctica. There are over 200 squirrel species that are categorized into three types: flying squirrels, ground squirrels, and tree squirrels.
Despite the many squirrels out there, gray squirrels and red squirrels are the most common ones that reside in North America. Squirrels are closely related to chipmunks, groundhogs, and prairie dogs.
They vary in size and weigh anywhere from ten grams to four pounds. These rodents are incredibly territorial and usually get aggressive when defending baby squirrels.
Although a squirrel attack doesn’t seem like an immediate cause for concern, some have rabies and spread diseases. Dealing with wild animals of any kind is never as easy as it seems.
Even though pest control isn’t always required to deter squirrels from house, it is always an option if the squirrel removal becomes too challenging.
How to Get Rid of Squirrels in Your House
Figuring out how to scare squirrels away from your house is imperative to sustaining the quality of your home and property. One critter alone does severe damage, and the longer you ignore the problem, the worse the damage becomes.
Signs of a squirrel infestation include strange noises, animal droppings, chewed or damaged entry points around the home and in the insulation, strong odors, and increased squirrel activity.
Always keep an eye on your tree branches and yard, and make a mental note of how many hang around your property throughout the day. If you can stop squirrels from eating plants near your house, they’ll be more likely to go elsewhere looking for food rather than trying to enter the house.
How to Deter Squirrels from House
Getting rid of squirrels in your house is impossible if you continue to provide them with reliable food sources. Birdseed, trash cans, and compost bins are all food sources that give squirrels easy access to a free meal.
Buying a squirrel baffle is one way to make scoring food more of a challenge for them if you still enjoy having birds around your property.
Baffles also make an excellent DIY raccoon repellent. To keep squirrels off bird feeder, use a baffle on the post. Baffles are cone-shaped disks placed on either the top or bottom of bird feeders to make them harder for squirrels, raccoons, and chipmunks to access.
Another strategy to consider when handling their food sources is to mix safflower seeds into the seed mix. The safflower seeds taste bitter and make a natural deterrent for squirrels.
Besides bird seed, ensure that trash cans have a lid that closes tightly before setting them outside. Remove fallen acorns, nuts, and fruits from the ground. The less food there is, the less likely they are to hang around and become a problem.
How to Scare Squirrels Away from Your House
Keeping the squirrel population in check is much easier to do when you give them something to be scared about. Pet cats and dogs are viewed as predators to the squirrels and benefit us on an emotional level as well.
If you prefer to keep your home fur-free, there are other animal options to signify the presence of predators. Plastic owl decoys are easy to set up around your property and give squirrels a warning.
Predator urine is also available for sale at hardware and outdoor shops and is easy to spray around the perimeter of your home.
Setting up a Squirrel Trap
Squirrel traps are one of the most humane ways to catch squirrels and release them somewhere far away from your house. A live trap is often made of wire mesh with a one-way door.
Placing peanut butter in the traps lures the squirrels inside. The door closes behind them, so they cannot escape or chew their way out.
Once inside, it is easy to take the cage traps five to ten miles away from your home and release them in a field or safe space where they are welcome to find a new home.
Making a DIY Squirrel Repellent
Finding out how to scare squirrels away from your house seems obvious once you know what they don’t like. It is also a simplistic way to get rid of chipmunks for good. All that’s needed is a few ingredients that you likely already have stored in your home.
Fill a plastic spray bottle with equal parts vinegar and cold water. Add a few teaspoons of powdered cayenne pepper and replace the top on the bottle.
Shake the bottle so everything mixes thoroughly. Walk around your home and spray the repellent in areas where you notice activity. This method may require you to crawl into the attic and spray the places where they nest and live.
How to Get Rid of Squirrels in the Attic
If you haven’t picked up on it by now, squirrels are highly sensitive to strong smells. Mothballs are one solution to keeping squirrels out of your house and away from your garden beds and landscaping. This unpleasant odor is also one of the scents that repel chipmunks and a variety of other rodents that may become yard pests.
Mothballs contain two primary ingredients – naphthalene and paradichlorobenzene. These two chemicals release pungent fumes into the air. The fumes aren’t only effective in killing moth larvae.
These fumes are highly irritating to squirrels, chipmunks, groundhogs, and other common pests we notice around the yard. Place a few mothballs in your attic and around your property where you suspect the squirrels are entering your home.
Poison isn’t the most humane option, but some people prefer killing the squirrels to keep them from coming back. It won’t necessarily stop more from entering your home in the future, but it is one way to solve the problem at present.
To get rid of squirrels in roof space or elsewhere in the house, crush a few aspirin pills into a powder and mix them in the paper bowls with the peanut butter. Divide the peanut butter into several different bowls and place them around the areas of your home with activity.
The squirrels can’t resist the smell of peanut butter, and once they take the bite, the aspirin starts to poison them.
Make sure to check on the locations you placed the bowls within your house after a couple of days and remove any fallen pests that didn’t make it outside.
Seal Off Entry Points
The squirrels make their way inside somewhere around your home’s exterior, and it is your job to find out where. Sealing off all entry points to the inside of your house is the only way to keep them out.
This is a task to add to your regular routine so that they don’t slip under your nose again in the future. Walk around your house with some caulk and seal off all cracks, crevices, and holes that they might be slip through.
Don’t underestimate the tiny holes they squeeze in. It is safer to seal off even the smallest holes than to take any chances.
Purchasing Motion-Activated Products
Technology is becoming increasingly impressive, and it is in your best interest to use it to your advantage. There are hundreds of motion-activated sprinklers and lights that can scare away squirrels who creep around at night.
Motion-activated strobe lights are popular choices for people with a squirrel infestation as well. Set the strobe lights by nesting sites that go off and scare the squirrels away so that it becomes less-than-ideal for them to return.
Trying to figure out how to scare squirrels away from your house might not be as easy as calling pest control, but there are humane options that work if you dedicate some time to it.
Removing squirrels from both inside and outside your house is crucial because they do more damage than good.
They might fool some people with their petite bodies and fluffy tails, but squirrels are a genuine nuisance, and deterring them from your property requires you to outwit them and make your property the most uncomfortable house on the block.
If you have a squirrel problem out of control, it is time to either call the exterminator or incorporate these ways to remove squirrels to evict them for good.
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