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Squirrel Control Blog - A Trapper's Journal

This weblog chronicles some of the adventures I have had while operating my wildlife removal company in Orlando, FL - Click any of the photos for a larger image and more information.

02.08.2008 - Squirrel Nest in Attic
Here are two separate photos of squirrel nests in the edges of attics.  Squirrels most commonly make their nest at the edge, often down in the eave, or soffit.  Squirrels are less likely to run all through the entire attic the way rats do.  They often just stick to the edges. Female squirrels have two litters of baby squirrels per year.  The first litter is in late winter, often in January or February.  The second litter is in late summer, usually in August.  Mother squirrels seek out a high place in which to make a nest, safe from predators. Baby squirrels are very vulnerable. Sometimes ...click for more

09.09.2007 - Squirrel Detail Closeup Photograph
This is a closeup photograph of an Eastern Gray Squirrel.  I have it in a cage, and although it's hard to take good closeup pictures of squirrels, because they are so rambunctious and fast, sometimes they will sit still for a period of time and let me take photos.  This is a profile shot of the squirrel's head, with my close camera setting.  I have this photo in much higher detail than I posted here online, if you'd like a copy.  Note how fur covers every surface, even the inside of the ears.  Also, you can see that it has whiskers, like all rodents. It's also got that tradmar ...click for more

07.01.2007 - Squirrel Cage - Trapped in a Cage Trap
Cage traps are a good option for squirrel control.  There are lethal traps out there, but there's no need to kill squirrels.  They can be live-trapped and relocated.  One-way exclusion doors also do a good job of removing squirrels from buildings, but squirrels sometimes then work to chew their way back into the building.  For successful trapping of squirrels in a cage trap, simply set the proper type of trap in an area you know the squirrels travel, and bait it with peanut butter and peanuts or seeds.  The trap must have the proper pan tension so that a lightweig ...click for more

05.15.2007 - Flying Squirrel Removal
Flying squirrels are rodents, like all squirrels.  They don't actually fly, but glide on flaps between their front and hind legs.  They are nocturnal animals, and they are colonizing - they live in groups.  They usually live in trees, just like the Gray Squirrels, but just like the Grays, they love to live inside of attics. If you have flying squirrels in the attic, you will notice noise at night, since that's when these animals are active.  They will leave the house at dark and forage, and come back a few times, and retire by morning.  They don't make quite as much noise as their larger ...click for more

03.24.2007 - Cutting a Dead Squirrel Out of the Wall
I smelled a bad smell in this apartment, and I knew it had to be some dead varmint. I walked the house, employing a sniff. I entered the laundry room and got a whiff. I sniffed the walls, I sniffed the ceiling, but it was the floorboard I found most appealing. I leaned on down and felt like a hero, because I knew I'd found ground zero. I got my saw and cut out a square, and was promptly greeted with fragrant air. I reached inside and fished around, and a squishy squirrel is what I found. I bagged it and tagged it and named it Muriel, I said a prayer & made a proper burial ...click for more

02.20.2007 - Squirell Control & Removal
I'm going to misspell squirrel as squirell for this blog entry, so that any internet searches searching for help with a squirrel problem might find this page.  Squirrels can cause many problem, but of course the most common is squirells in the attic.  Some people have me trap and remove and relocate squirells just because they are causing other problems outside, such as chewing on wood or stealing bird food, but most of the time, I deal with squirells inside homes. Most squirell control revolves around trapping and removal. The nuisance squirells need to be tak ...click for more

12.19.2006 - Squirrel Questions and Answers
Dear Three Squirrels, I was on your website and I had a question for you. How can I tell by sound if I have a squirrel or a mouse in my wall? Some history: I have a new home. It’s only 4 years old and for the four years I’ve been in my home I’ve been plagued with critters in my wall. I know for a fact one of the nuisance was field mice. They would come in late fall and leave late spring (every year). I believe I pretty much have that problem under control. I found some gaps that the builder didn’t close (no roof sheeting behind the gutter in a couple of spots, didn’t caulk whe ...click for more

10.03.2006 - Preventing Squirrels from Getting in the Attic
Here's a couple of squirrels that I've managed to photograph inside attics.  I've already written many guides about how to remove squirrels from attics, so now I will just write about how to prevent squirrels from getting into your house in the first place.  Of course, if you've found my website, it's likely that you already have a wildlife problem, but I'll write about prevention anyway. If your already have a squirrel problem you can certainly do preventative measures to prevent future problems from happening again. Step 1 Inspect the whole house, top to bottom, and ...click for more

09.25.2006 - How To Catch Squirrels
The best way to catch squirrels is with a cage trap.  There are lethal traps available, but there's no need to kill squirrels, and lethal traps are dangerous to use, and in my opinion, less effective than cage traps.  In the above photo, I'm holding three types of cage traps. The two traps on top are Havahart 1045 traps.  They work well, but they are limited to flat areas with enough room.  The door slides up vertically, and it needs enough space.  It comes down due to gravity when a squirrel steps on the trip pan and a bar triggers the door to slide down and shut. The next two pict ...click for more

03.26.2006 - Squirrel Traps in Action
Here's a fine day's catch of squirrels on an unusually cold March day here in Orlando Florida.  The reason I'm catching so many squirrels at this time of year is because squirrels have their first litter of the year in late January.  By late March, the young squirrels are nearly full adult size, and they are running about wreaking havoc in side attics across the land.  This catch came from two different houses today, both in the same neighborhood.  This neighborhood has a problem common to houses in this part of the country - all of the houses are built the same, and thus the ...click for more

03.03.2006 - Squirrels in a Vent Pipe
This is an office building here in Orlando.  The workers have been hearing a lot of noise up in their ceiling, all sorts of running about all day long.  Most of the time, noises during the daytime means squirrel activity. Other attic critters, such as rats or raccoons, are active at night. I came out to the building to inspect, but I had trouble finding an opening for squirrels to get into the building.  Everything was sealed tight, no open holes or chewmarks.  The only thing I saw amiss was a rip in a metal vent pipe.  I thought that the pipe must be solid, with no opening into the ...click for more

01.12.2006 - Squirrel Relocation
Squirrels can be stubborn.  Sometimes I try to release them, and they won't leave their cages.  In fact, that's often the case for opossums and armadillos as well.  When I get a stubborn animal, I have a special trick.  I blow on them!  That's right, one good huff and puff, and out they go! Most of the time, I relocate animals about 20 miles outside of the city to a wilderness preserve area.  However, I was set to leave Orlando for a few days, and I had no other animals to relocate, so I released this one in my back yard.  Of course, this was over ten miles from the capture ...click for more

10.03.2005 - Dead Squirrel in Ceiling
A dead squirrel in a ceiling is no big deal, really. It happens all the time. Squirrels live in ceilings, homeowners are too lazy or cheap or ignorant to have them removed when the squirrel is alive, but then eventually it dies and creates a horrible smell inside the home, and then the people therein decide to do something. To be fair, some people don't know that they have squirrels up in the ceiling, but these same people must also be deaf. Anyway, they do have a sense of smell - they are not asnomiacs - and then I get called to do the dirty work at my low, low pri...click for more

09.20.2005 - Baby Squirrel with Peanut
Squirrels are cute for about three days.  Seriously.  That's how quickly they grow up.  They are born ugly, hairless, sealed-eyes little things.  Not pleasant to look at.  Then they start to sprout fur and such, and they still look like pitiful little hair transplant victim rats.  Then you blink your eyes, and they look like adult squirrels.  They really grow quickly.  In the process, there is about a three-day span during which they look like the above photo.  Awww.... cute!!!!  Super cute!!! I happened to remove a few squirrels in this cute stage today. They were in an attic of a home, in ...click for more

06.06.2005 - Dead Squirrel in the Attic
I got this dead squirrel out of the attic. It was a girl, and it died out of attack. Someone or something had attacked it with poison. It sniffed it and ate it and that was the roison. Reason a female squirrel died - due to the anticoagulant in the rat poison. Squirrels rarely eat rat poison, so I was surprised. They usually don't eat anything up in the attic, and will normally only eat outside. However, this one managed to eat some poison, at least my autopsy (brief glance and nonchalant assumption) results say that it did. I guess that it could have died of natural causes as well. ...click for more

03.08.2005 - How To Stop Squirrels from Chewing
Squirrels are members of the rodent family.  As such, they have long teeth that grow continually.  Just as a cat has to scratch its claws and people have to trim their fingernails, rodents have to gnaw to keep their teeth in check.  Gnawing is part of their behavior, and handy for all sorts of things, from opening nuts to yes, chewing their way into your house.  I commonly deal with situations in which squirrels chew their way into homes.  I have dozens of such photos (I always photograph animal damage to show my customers what needs fixing), but this is the first ...click for more

01.29.2005 - Infant Squirrels
This was a very interesting job.  A squirrel was entering and creating a mess in an antique store.  It was running all through the shelves, knocking things over, and it broke several expensive glass pieces.  The store owner was very upset!  He called me to trap and remove this squirrel.  I came to the store and the building had all sorts of flaws.  It was easy for animals to get in by many places, such as a wide gap around the perimeter of the ceiling.  It would be impossible to seal off all the squirrel entry points without major renovations. The owner simply wanted the ...click for more

10.14.2004 - One Way Door To Remove Squirrels
One of the most common ways that I solve a problem with squirrels in the attic is via the use of a one-way door.  The principle is simple: the squirrels are going in and out of the house, through one of more holes that they've chewed open or that already exist.  I find those holes and block up all but one of them, the most heavily used one, and install a one-way door that will allow the squirrels to get out of the attic, but not back in.  Sometimes, because squirrels are prone to chew on wood to get back in, I use a one-way door with a cage attached, such as shown in the abo ...click for more

08.16.2004 - Squirrels in the Soffit
Squirrels are the most common animal, nationwide, to break into houses.  They will use an open hole or chew their way in, and live inside your house, which is dryer and safer than any tree.  I'm currently working on removing a group of four or five squirrels from a home here in Orlando.  They are mostly living in the soffit area of this home. The soffit, if you are unfamiliar with architecture, is the bottom portion of the eave (the underside of the part of the roof that hangs over the edge of the house.  Most homes have soffits. Squirrels just love to live in them. They provide plenty of ...click for more

04.05.2004 - Pet Squirrels in my Pockets
Two darling baby squirrels.  I removed them from a squirrel nest in an attic, along with the mother squirrel.  It's a bit late in the season for squirrels this young, but one can't always count on Mother Nature to deliver on schedule.  One can count on Mother David to deliver a fine resting place for baby critters - in my pockets!  I will name them Scroungy and Scritchy.  They are very cute, nestled up in my pockets and fondling my nipples.  I think I'll keep them as pets forever. On second though, no I won't.  Squirrels aren't meant to be pets.  Yes, they can be cute, and ...click for more

02.21.2004 - Squirrel Infestation
I made this squirrel trap myself, and I was pleased with the results.  This customer had a squirrel infestation in his ceiling.  There was no attic space to access inside this flat-roof home, but he was hearing all sorts of running noises throughout his ceiling space.  I inspected the home yesterday and found that a large chimney flu pipe runs up the side of the house and through a hole cut into the soffit of the house.  The problem is that the pipe had a diameter of 16 inches and the hole had a diameter of 22 inches. This left a big open ring leading right into the ...click for more

01.05.2004 - Squirrel on a Rope
This is a small squirrel, perhaps six weeks old, that I removed from the bottom of a chimney.  I lowered this sisal rope down the chimney, and it clung on, and I just pulled it up, like reeling in a furry fish.  It clung on to the rope, and I was able to take a few good photos of it, such as this one. Sisal rope is a good tool for removing squirrels from chimneys.  I carry a few lengths of it with me at all times, and I weight the end with large lead fishing weights.  It's a common problem here in Florida for squirrels to fall down chimneys.  This is normally not a problem in most parts of ...click for more

01.04.2004 - Removing a Squirrel from a Chimney Flu
This customer was hearing squirrels in his chimney.  The problem was that he had a slick metal flu, a tube as you can see in the photo behind my left arm.  Some squirrels had made a nest up at the top of the flu, under the rain and debris guard (not pictured, since I've removed it).  This wouldn't really be a problem, but a female squirrel made a nest, and one of her young squirrels, once it got the knack for running about and exploring, decided to explore its way down the chimney flu, where it got stuck.  Once down there, it made a hell of a racket, desperately tryin ...click for more

11.21.2003 - Eastern Gray Squirrel
This is an Eastern Gray Squirrel, a common critter throughout the United States, and a common pest critter found in people's attics.  These highly capable and adaptable animals are able to thrive in the woods and in the suburbs and even the middle of the city.  They live in trees, attic, anywhere they can find a safe place to den.   Thus, they commonly come into conflict with people, who wish to have them removed from the attic or property.  I will now address some recent emails that I've received about squirrels. Dear David, We found a baby squirrel that came right up ...click for more

09.14.2003 - Catch Squirrels on the Roof
Here are two juvenile Eastern Gray Squirrels that I caught off of a roof.  I do most of my squirrel trapping on roofs.  Squirrels are very common pest critters in urban and suburban areas, and they spend a lot of time of the roofs of homes.  This is party because the roof is just another part of their environment, but squirrels also often nest in various areas of the roof.  If the roof provides some shelter in an area, such as an overhanging eave, chimney cover, awning, or other structure, squirrels may end up nesting in those areas.  I removed these juvenile squirrels who were in ...click for more

08.11.2003 - Squirrels in the Eaves
This house has a family of squirrels living in the eaves.  There's no attic space for me to access in this particular home, and the homeowner is hearing most of the sounds coming from the perimeter of the home.  It's the normal sort of report for a squirrel infestation.  All sorts of scratching and running noises are heard, they are often fast and rambunctious, and they happen in the morning and evening mostly.  This is when squirrels are active. The squirrels have chewed some holes in the flimsy vent areas underneath the eave.  It's easy to trap them with this special trap - it's ...click for more

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