Keeping squirrels out of your yard is pretty much impossible. They are incredible climbers and no fence would ever keep them out. However, you can employ some tactics to keep squirrels out of your house.
If you’ve got a squirrel in your home, here are some squirrel trap tips and ideas for what you can do to prevent future squirrel guests.
Squirrels in the Home
If you’ve got a squirrel guest, it’s time to set a squirrel trap.
The best kind of traps are live traps. They aren’t messy, they’re safe and they are highly effective. Once trapped, you can release the squirrel back outside safely. Afterward, make sure the hole the squirrel used to get inside is properly plugged.
If you don’t own a squirrel trap, below are some buying tips:
- The squirrel trap should be easy-to-set. Some models let you set and release with one hand, making them extremely easy-to-use.
- A hand guard is important in protecting yourself from the animal.
- A sturdy-lock door will ensure the trapped squirrel can’t escape.
- The interior should have smooth edges to prevent injuries to the animal.
- The trap should be galvanized for rust resistance, which will prolong the life of your trap.
Before you set your trap, be sure to:
- Clean the trap
- Wear latex gloves so your scent doesn’t get on the trap
- Have a plan: make sure your local and state laws allow for squirrel trapping and have a plan for what you’ll do with the trapped squirrel
- Get plastic sheeting to put under the trap when transporting through your house, or in your car if you plan on relocating the squirrel a distance away
- Get a cover ready: a trapped squirrel is calmer when it can’t see out of the trap
When setting up your trap, use effective bait. Here are some ideas:
- Peanut butter: spread on a cracker
- Peanut butter mixed with oatmeal or molasses
- Cereal and grains
- Shelled corn
- Anise oil on bread
- Sunflower seeds
- Almond extract on bread
Squirrel Prevention Tips
After you trap the squirrel, take steps to prevent future squirrels in your home:
- Fix any deteriorating wood, which can be chewed through
- Plug any holes with ¼” wire mesh hardware cloth
- Trim tree branches so they are at least 10 feet away from your home
- Cap your chimney
- Install a strobe light in your attic or crawlspace, or wherever you get squirrels, to irritate and disorient them … they’ll want to leave and not come back
- Sprinkle a granular squirrel repellent in the non-living areas of your home where you find squirrels
Here are buying tips for squirrel repellents:
- Choose a granular squirrel repellent so it can be used indoors; sprinkle it in the non-living areas
- The repellent should target the squirrel’s sense of taste, scent and touch
- It should contain all-natural ingredients, including piperine, oil of black pepper and capsaicin
- The repellent should double as a raccoon repellent: the more animals it repels, the more protection you’ll have