5 Signs of a Squirrel Problem in Your House

Squirrel Problem

Squirrels are wild animals that nest in trees, but they will happily nest in attics. Attics are warm and safe from predators. While it may seem impossible, squirrels have strong teeth that let them chew their way through vents, soffits, and other small openings in the roof. Squirrels can sense that the interior of the attic is warm, and they’ll do everything they can to get inside.

Invasions like these are more common than you might think. If you suspect that a squirrel has broken into your home, look out for the following signs:

  1. Strange Noises

One of the most telling signs of a squirrel invasion is hearing noises in the walls or attic of the home. Listen for scratching, chattering, thumping and squeaking sounds during the early hours of the morning and again at sundown. This is when squirrels are most active. Though squirrels usually nest in soffits and attics, they will sometimes nest in the insulation between the outer walls of the home.

  1. Squirrels Everywhere

Squirrels are very active during their spring and summer mating seasons. They are also very active in the fall when they bury nuts and build nests for the winter. If you have been seeing a lot of squirrel activity on your roof and in the yard, a squirrel may be building a nest in your house. See if you can find where the squirrels are coming from. Squirrel nests usually have one entry point, from which they will go in and out throughout the day. Check your soffits, roof vents, and the edges of your roof for holes.

  1. Chew Marks and Damage in the Attic

If you can reach the attic safely, look for signs of a squirrel’s nest. Check the insulation for feces, twigs, leaves, and debris. Nests can usually be found along the edges of the attic, tucked into the soffits or the insulation. Chew marks may also indicate a squirrel problem. As rodents, these animals never stop chewing.

  1. Foul Odours

Squirrels urinate and defecate around their nests, so if there is one in your home, it will smell. Squirrel nests leave a pungent odour that gets worse with time.Should a squirrel pass away in its nest, it will leave a horrible stench that lasts several weeks. Smelling something in the attic or near the nest could point to a squirrel’s nest.

  1. Watermarks on the Ceiling

With time, the urine that the squirrels have left in the attic will accumulate and seep into the ceiling below. This creates circular, off-white, brown stains in the ceiling. The ceiling’s plaster may also appear damaged and cracked from the moisture.Yuck! Luckily, this usually only appears after quite some time. Look out for the other signs and contact a professional before this happens.

How to Get Rid of Squirrels in the House

So, what do you do if there are squirrels in the attic? Call a wildlife removal company for help. They can confirm if there is indeed a squirrel living in your home and get rid of it safely. The technician on duty will install a one-way door to the entry point, which will let the squirrel leave on its own. If there are babies in the nest, the technician will wait until they have grown old enough to leave. He or she can tell you at which stage the squirrel family is growing and they will know how to proceed.

Here’s what you can do to help keep them out.

Get rid of the bird feeder

The bird feeder unfortunately attracts squirrels and other nuisance wildlife to the home. Squirrels will always come back to the yard to feed on it. Get rid of it, or switch to a hanging suet feeder, at the very least.

Harvest your fruits and vegetables on time

Fallen apples, pears, and other fruits are a squirrel’s favourite. Pick these up as soon as they fall to the ground. If you grow other fruits and vegetables, don’t let them fall to the ground and rot. Pick these as soon as they’re ripe. You should also consider protecting your vegetable patch with row covers.

Seal entry points

Ask a wildlife technician to squirrel-proof your roof vents, plumbing vents, chimneys, and soffits. He or she can inspect your roof for entry points and seal them shut with a sturdy, wildlife-proof mesh.The technician may have colour-matched flashing and other discreet options as well.

Keep the yard tidy 

Squirrels tend to invade attics in areas that are overgrown. Trim tree branches away from the roof of the house and groom the yard on a regular basis. Trim back vines so they do not reach the roof. Mow the lawn, rake the leaves, and empty out the gutters in the fall.