The cold winter temperatures not only drive us indoors in search of warmth but critters too! Winter is the time of year when many animals seek warmth, shelter, food, and water indoors – even in our homes! Some common winter wildlife nuisances include rodents, raccoons, opossums, and skunks. What can you do to prevent these creatures from taking up residence this winter? Check out these tips to prevent winter wildlife.
- Eliminate Their Food Source. Critters will often enter your home in search of food and water. Keep food stored in airtight containers, including pet food. Don’t leave food, including pet food, out overnight. Clean up any spills right away. Sweep and vacuum regularly. Bring in birdfeeders at night and clean up any spilled birdseed from the ground underneath. Store filler birdseed in the garage if possible. Try to use garbage cans with locking lids.
- Eliminate Their Shelter. Keep your yard clean and mowed. Remove any debris from your yard. Store firewood at least 2 feet off the ground. Trim shrubs and tree branches back from your house. Keep yard waste (clippings, branches, dead trees, etc) in yard waste bags and store them in the garage until you put them out for garbage day. Clean out your garage and organize it. Try to use plastic storage containers versus cardboard. Keep your gutters clear as debris and leaves invite pests to make their nests in them.
- Eliminate Their Entry Points. Carefully inspect your house inside and out for ways pests can get into your home. Use caps on your chimney. Make sure openings and holes are repaired or covered with wire mesh. Seal around your HVAC and utility lines and any gaps in your roof and siding. Make sure your windows and doors are sealed, including your garage door. Consider using metal seals or caulk rather than rubber or plastic. Inspect your screens and make sure they are in good repair and replace them when necessary. Consider enclosing your crawlspace to prevent entry under your home.
- Call A Professional. If you suspect you have a winter wildlife problem, call a professional wildlife control company who can safely remove the critter and give your home a thorough inspection and treatment plan to prevent them from coming back.