With the weather turning colder, you’re probably working through your winter to-do list. Many of us are winterizing sprinkler systems, packing up deck furniture, and putting out holiday decorations. But if you want to keep wild animals out of your yard, you should add wildlife proofing your home to your to-do list.
How to Keep Wildlife Out of Your Yard and Home This Winter
If you want to avoid animals in the attic and surprise wildlife encounters when you step into your garage, here’s how to wildlife-proof your home for winter:
Step 1: Repair Cracks and Holes in Your Home’s Exterior
A crack, hole, or gap in your home’s siding or foundation is an open door for winter wildlife. Bats and other small critters can sneak into a house through an entry hole no bigger than a crayon. Filling in these holes can keep wild animals out and the warmth in. And don’t forget to cover your chimney! A chimney cap can be a simple way to keep animals from becoming unwelcome guests.
Before you permanently fill in a hole, plug it with cloth, insulation, or a paper towel. If an animal has already found its way inside, it will push this covering aside. This will keep you from sealing a critter inside your home. If an animal has already invaded your space, removing it yourself can cause health risks. Contact professional wildlife control to help.
Step 2: Don’t Forget to Inspect Other Outdoor Structures
Sheds, garages, and other outdoor structures look appealing to wildlife during the cold weather. Check these buildings for holes just like you would inspect your house. And keep the doors shut as much as possible to prevent groundhogs, raccoons, and other types of animals from wandering in.
Step 3: Put Away Your Patio
Patio furniture, especially outdoor cushions, are tempting places for animals in winter. They make the perfect warm, comfortable hideouts for pests. If you can, move outdoor furniture into your house, garage, or shed to keep them safe from wildlife damage. If you don’t have space, invest in winter patio furniture covers that will protect your outdoor furniture and deter animals.
Step 4: Remove Access to Food
Food resources are scarce during the cold winter months. Unsecured garbage cans or a lot of birdseed on the ground can mean raccoons in winter. Cutting off access to tasty treats can keep wildlife out of your yard. Store pet food, birdseed, and other food items indoors or in airtight, wildlife-proof containers, and make sure your garbage cans are tightly secured to keep out wild dumpster divers.
Step 5: Trim Back Tree Branches
Overhanging tree branches provide direct routes to the roof for animals. Pruning tree branches can help prevent raccoon attic infestations and other animals in the roof. As part of your winter to-do list, make note of any branches that squirrels, raccoons, and other animals might use to climb onto your roof and remove them.
Step 6: Get Rid of Hiding Spots
Pesky winter wildlife loves to hide in piles of leaves, lawn trimmings, and garbage. Before the snow falls, clean up your yard to get rid of any possible hiding spots. Bag up leaves, store firewood off the ground, and trim down shrubbery near your house to keep your yard clean and unwelcoming to all types of animals who might want to spend winter with you.
What to Do if You Notice Signs of an Animal Infestation
If you notice raccoon droppings, sounds of an animal in the attic scratching at night, or other signs of an animal infestation, there’s no need to worry. Wildlife management professionals are specially trained in wildlife removal and trapping, wildlife cleanup, and wildlife repellent. They’ll get rid of your unwanted guests and seal up anything critters can use as an entry hole.
Call a Wildlife Removal Specialist
Varment Guard Wildlife Services offers expert residential and commercial wildlife control in the Midwest and Mideast. We have over 130 years of combined experience in wildlife control and bird management, with the vast majority of our team holding degrees in wildlife management.
We’ll help keep wild animals out of your home this winter. Schedule an appointment online or give us a call at 800-793-8169.