If you read the local news, it seems there’s always an item about police or wildlife control responding to the threat of a rabid wild animal. While it sounds a bit scary, it’s important to know that rabies is still quite rare. It is, however, invariably fatal without treatment, so contact with wild mammals should always be minimized, and if there’s any doubt at all, humans and pets should receive preventive treatment against rabies.

Rabies, a central nervous system disease, is transmitted through bites from infected animals or when saliva from an infected animal gets into an open wound.

Which Critters Get Rabies?

According to the CDC, wild animals accounted for 92.4 percent of reported cases of rabies in 2015. Bats were the most frequently reported rabid wildlife species (30.9 percent of all animal cases during 2015), followed by raccoons (29.4 percent), skunks (24.8 percent), and foxes (5.9 percent).

Although cross-species transmission of rabies is possible (for example, infection of dogs by raccoon rabies variant), most rabies virus variants are transmitted within a single species.

Preventing Exposure to Rabies

Minimizing your contact with wild mammals is the best way to prevent rabies. While you should presume that any wild animal could be a carrier of rabies, there are ways to spot animals that are showing symptoms. An infected animal will often become aggressive, making atypical noises, attacking humans and other animals and have trouble drinking and swallowing.

What Should You Do If You Think an Animal Is Rabid

People who think they’ve spotted a rabid animal should call their local police department, who may bring in animal control. Don’t attempt to trap or kill the animal yourself, as you could increase your chances of exposure to the disease. (If you do have contact with a wild animal, seek medical advice about treatment immediately.)

The best way to prevent exposure to rabies is to keep your home and yard clear of wild animals that could present a threat. Secure garbage and don’t leave food accessible and block anyways that animals could be gaining access to your home. This may require the help of a professional.

Call Anderson Wildlife for a Free Quote

Professional pest removal company Anderson Wildlife uses green methods for the removal of bats and other wildlife, eliminating any use of poisons, pesticides, or chemicals. Animals are relocated humanely, and we’ll repair any damage to your home or business and block entrances so the bats (or squirrels, or mice) can’t re-enter your home.

Call 203-758-0555 or visit us online for a free quote.

Let’s face it: skunks are cute. They do not have dangerous teeth and claws, they’re relatively small and fluffy, and their outrageous scent is their only means of defense. It’s a pretty good one, however, and no one wants their yard, their home, their pets or themselves smelling like a skunk. For this reason, it’s a good idea to keep your yard free of our black-and-white stripy friends.

How Do I Know if There Are Skunks in the Yard?

For starters, you can smell them. Also look for holes in your lawn and garden: skunks are nocturnal foragers that will dig holes on your property to look for insects. If you have an odor, lawn damage and upturned plants caused by skunks near the house, chances are, you’re looking for a way to escort the smelly invaders off your property.

How Do I Keep Skunks Out of My Yard?

There are a few ways you can discourage skunks from moving into your yard. They include:

Adding light. As nocturnal animals, skunks prefer the darkness, so adding garden lights or keeping your exterior lights on all night can help them look for darker pastures to make their homes.

Discourage nesting. If skunks are living in your yard, chances are good they’re planning to raise a family someplace protected from the elements: this may include sheds, garages, decks and even holes in the foundation of your house. Check for all holes that could represent an entrance for skunks and seal them up.

Hide the food. If you’re leaving your garbage unsecured or open containers of pet food in the garage, you may as well be issuing an invitation to skunks. Secure all sources of potential food for the invaders.

Turn on the sprinkler. Few furry creatures enjoy getting wet unexpectedly. If you have skunks in the yard, turn the sprinkler on at night sometimes. A soggy skunk will very likely choose to make his or her home elsewhere.

Trap and release. It’s a good humane option, but there’s always the risk you’ll get sprayed, or capture the neighbor’s cat instead. If you’re going to try this route, bait the traps with things cats don’t eat: peanut butter and bananas are good.

Call Anderson Wildlife for a Free Quote

Professional pest removal company Anderson Wildlife uses humane methods for the removal of skunks and other wildlife, eliminating any use of poisons, pesticides, or chemicals. Animals are relocated humanely, and we’ll repair any damage to your home or business and block entrances so the skunks can’t re-enter your shed, home or garage. Call 203-758-0555 or visit us online for a free quote.

In Connecticut, we share the state with a fascinating array of wildlife. While most of us appreciate them in their natural environment, we do NOT appreciate sharing our homes with infestations of them. Bats are one of the more common attic pests in Connecticut.

What Kind of Bats Are In My Attic?

While it may not be a major concern to you what the Latin name of the flying rodent snoozing in your attic is, knowing might help eliminate them from your household. While there are eight species of bat in Connecticut, the two most common are the little brown and big brown bats. The little brown bat is usually between 3.1 to 3.7 inches in length with a wingspan of 8.6 to 10.5 inches. Big brown bats are generally between 4.1 to 4.8 inches in length, and have wingspans of about a foot.

How Do I Know If I Have Bats?

It’s likely you’ll hear them during the day, crawling and scratching. (If you can hear them chattering, it’s a sign you have big brown bats.) Another sign to watch for is the bats exiting from under the eaves of the house, or from attic windows, vents or shutters at dusk to feed. If you think they may be in your attic, but can’t see them, look for dark-colored droppings or dark-brown stains, or a distinctive ammonia smell.

bats

First of All, Don’t Freak Out

Bats are not dangerous, and they eat annoying insects such as mosquitos (one little brown bat can eat as many as 1,200 mosquitos in an hour). None of the species found in Connecticut drink blood. While they can carry rabies (like any other mammal), fewer than one percent of bats are infected with the virus. More people die each year from dog attacks, bee stings, lightning and household accidents than from bat-transmitted rabies. If it’s a single bat, close the doors to the room and leave a window open. The bat will find its way out.

If the Whole Bat Family Has Moved In

Getting rid of a single bat is easy. Persuading a family group to move out is trickier. There are home-remedies that may work to a limited extent. Illuminating the parts of attic where bats are roosting with bright lights will discourage them. Moth balls may be of limited value, and sonic devices that claim to drive out rodents simply don’t work. The best way to discourage bats from your home is by patching up any entrances they’re using to your home while they’re out feeding during the day. For this, it’s a good idea to seek professional wildlife removal help.

Look for Effective but Humane Pest Control

As a professional pest removal company Anderson Wildlife uses green methods for the removal of bats and other wildlife, eliminating any use of poisons, pesticides, or chemicals. Animals are relocated humanely, and we’ll also repair any damage to your home or business and block entrances so the bats (or squirrels, or mice) can’t re-enter your home. Call 203-758-0555 or visit us online for a free quote.

Animal lovers who are also homeowners often find themselves in a bind: they’d prefer there weren’t critters invading their homes for the sake of their health and safety as well as property values, but they’d prefer not to harm any animals. So how do you encourage animals to move out without hurting them or your family? The answer is integrated pest management (IPM) methods, which include baits and traps, exclusion from your home and habitat modification so that more wildlife friends don’t decide to move in.

Choose Green Solutions

Many animal control companies use chemicals, foggers or other methods to smoke out animals, and this can render your home unlivable in addition to being unkind to wildlife and the environment as a whole. Look for an animal control specialist who advertises green solutions that harm no living things: you and your family included. A targeted, environmentally-friendly, organic approach ensures that no harmful chemical solutions are being used and animal invasions are dealt with humanely.

Look for Traps That Don’t Harm Animals

Trapping and relocating is an important component of green, humane pest control. To trap effectively, however, you need to know what’s invading your home and what the best traps to deal with the situation are. Professional pest control companies can identify the culprit behind the invasion (rats and mice sound a lot like birds and bats when they’re in your attic) and determine the best approach for setting traps and checking them regularly.

Seal Your Home Against Future Invasions

It’s not always easy to determine how wildlife is getting access to your home. Mice and bats can sneak in through openings not much larger than cracks…only one-quarter inch wide. Unwanted animal invaders can get into your home in a variety of ways, through the chimney flue, roof joints, attic vents, pipes and conduits, dryer vents, foundation joints, and even through wood trim. Professional pest control services can find and seal the entrance points, discouraging more furry friends from moving in once they’ve been humanely evicted. It’s also important to repair any damage that invaders have done to your home to preserve your home’s value and energy efficiency.

Call Anderson Wildlife

At Anderson Wildlife, we use 100 percent green solutions, with no pesticides, chemicals or poisons to harm our furry little friends. Where it’s warranted and allowed by state law, we can even use traps to relocate wildlife to a new home better suited for them than yours. We’ll check traps daily to make sure we’re removing animals quickly and humanely. Contact us today at 203-758-0555 to discuss how we can make your home more livable for your family and less appealing to animals. We serve all of New Haven County, as well as Woodbury, Southington, Stratford, Bridgeport and Fairfield.

Sure, you’ve got squirrels in your yard. Everybody does. It’s NOT unheard of, however, to have discovered that squirrels have moved into your home…Even worse, they may be raising a family in your home. Isn’t necessarily a great thing.

Squirrels can do a lot of damage and even cause danger to home occupants if they’re chewing on wiring before the homeowner has even realized they’re present.

How Do I Know If I’ve Got Squirrels?

Squirrels are busy animals, and leave some tell-tale signs that they’re present in your home. These might include:

Chewing or scratching noises in the attic or walls. Squirrels are diurnal, so they’re active during the day. When your home is quiet, you might hear rustling, jumping and gnawing sounds.

Chewed insulation. Insulation is attractive for bedding for invading squirrels, so look for signs that something has been making holes in or fluffing up your home’s insulation.

Droppings and urine. A dead giveaway that you’ve got squirrels is finding piles of their droppings. While they’re similar to the droppings of other animals such as bats and rats, squirrel feces look like pellets with rounded edges. Squirrel urine may soak into your ceiling or walls, so don’t assume that any “water damage” you see is water.

Damage and chewing at entry points. Squirrels have very strong teeth, so there are few non-metal materials that will hold them back. (And squirrels CAN chew through wire mesh.) Look for holes chewed in roofing material, shingles, window frames and near vents, plumbing or other entryways into your home. The squirrels may have created an entrance for themselves.

You see squirrel prints. Squirrel footprints in dust or sawdust are a dead giveaway. While many rodent footprints can look similar, gray squirrel prints are between one-and-a-half and two-and-a-half inches long (depending on whether it’s a fore or hind print) and look like this. Red squirrel prints will be slightly smaller.

You notice damaged food containers. Like any animal in your home, squirrels will be looking for a free meal. You may noticed holes chewed in pet food bags or any other dry food storage containers.

Even When They’re Gone, They’re Not Gone

Even if you’ve managed to evict the squirrels from your home, you may need professional help in cleaning up from the damage they’ve caused with chewing, feces and urine.

Pest management professionals like Anderson Wildlife can not only help you evict the squirrels from your home, but ensure the mess is properly cleaned and repaired.

Contact us today for more information.

Connecticut may not have any lions or tigers (though we DO have bears), but there’s no shortage of wildlife that will move into our homes, garages, sheds and even cars given half an opportunity. Animals in your home can be annoying at best, and cause monetary or even dangerous electrical damage in the worst case.

What KIND of Critters Are In My House?

If you’ve heard rustling sounds in your attic or found droppings, you know that something is present, but you may not be sure what. While the signs of many kinds of animals can be similar, there are some clues to determine what’s infesting your home.

Daytime or nighttime? If you’re hearing sounds in your attic in the daytime, particularly early morning or evening, you likely have a squirrel problem. If you’re heavier hearing noises at night, it’s likely raccoons. Lighter nighttime noises may indicate mice or rats.

What kind of sounds? Squirrels, being smaller, will make lighter noises when they scurry. Raccoons are larger and less active when they’re in your attic, so they’ll make heavier, slower sounds. They’re also more vocal than squirrels, so listen for sounds of squeaking and chattering. High-pitched chittering that occurs around sunset may be signs of bats.

What kind of holes is it making? Since few of us invite critters to move into our homes, they make their own entryways. The types of holes you’re seeing in the roof shingles and around vents and plumbing can be a clue. Squirrels can fit into a chewed hole as small as two inches. If you’re seeing big, torn-out holes, it’s likely you’ve got raccoons.

Is it in the walls? If you’re hearing critters in the walls of your home, you’ve likely got a mouse or rat problem, as squirrels and raccoons tend to stick to attics and are generally too large to fit into walls.

How large are the chew marks? It’s not atypical for the critters invading your home to chew on insulation, furnishings and even wiring. Very small tooth marks indicate rats, mice or squirrels. Larger damage may be due to raccoons, opossums or other critters.

What do the droppings look like? Where’s there are animals, there is animal poop. Looking at the droppings can give you a clue as to what type of animal it is. This chart can help you match the shape and size of the droppings to the animal.

Pest Management is a Must

Whatever the animal, it’s important to get the animal out (and ensure it doesn’t have babies!) Secondly, you need to close up access so the animal family doesn’t move back in again. Many animals can chew through the barriers homeowners put up in a DIY attempt to animal-proof.

Pest management professionals like Anderson Wildlife Control can help you determine what kind of creatures are living within your home and build a customized plan to evict them and keep them from coming back.

Contact us today for more information and a free quote.

You’re on your way to work, and you enter the garage early in the morning only to find it’s been ransacked. Was it thieves? Perhaps, if they’re thieves who eat garbage and leave paw prints.

It’s still winter in the northeast, and it’s not uncommon for “uninvited guests” such as raccoons to move into garages and sheds in search of shelter. (Raccoon paw prints look like this.)

Who Left the Garage Door Open?

Someone may have left a door open, or the raccoons may have found another way in. They’re smart, crafty and can squeeze into small spaces, so it may not be anyone in the family’s fault. Raccoons can also be very persistent, so putting up a barrier over one way in may inspire them to find another. So what can you do to evict them?

(Note: since the offenders are often mothers with babies, your goal should be a humane way to get the mother to move the babies to a location that isn’t your garage.)

Start by Offending Their Noses

Raccoons won’t urinate near their dens, so the smell of ammonia can cause them to vacate the premises. Experts recommend putting ammonia-soaked cloths into a sealed container pierced with air holes so the smell will escape into the garage or shed and permeate the air. You can use common household ammonia purchased from the supermarket. Take care not to breathe in the fumes of ammonia yourself, and NEVER mix ammonia with bleach.

Remove the Food and Water

While this won’t guarantee raccoons will leave, it helps to ensure you’re not keeping any “dinner” handy for your unwanted raccoons. Dog and cat food, bird seed and garbage should not be stored in the garage or shed. Also remove water sources such as garden hoses or bowls of dog water. The point is to make it difficult for the raccoons to feel at home.

Make Sure the Raccoon Sees You

A raccoon mother whose living space in a shed or garage has been discovered by the homeowner is usually frightened enough to move her babies within 48 hours with no other intervention. By “raiding” their space, you can often scare the mother and babies out using what’s known as “human harassment.” Leaving lights or a radio on for light and noise can also encourage your unwanted tenants to find a new home.

Call a Professional

If you’re unsure of what to do or worried about coming into contact with wild animals (it’s a bad idea to physically confront any wild animal), it’s best to let experts determine a safe and compliant way to get the animals to leave.

Pest management professionals like Anderson Wildlife will find the most humane way to make sure that your new tenants leave your garage or shed and don’t return next time they need a place to live.

It’s nearly spring, which means it’s time for green grass, crocuses and…mating wild animals. While you might normally be inclined to leave wild animals to their own business, it’s hard to ignore when the animal is a skunk. Mating skunks can leave skunk smells all over your property throughout the spring from initial contact to the period when the baby skunks are born (called “whelping.”) The smell is particularly common when the female is rejecting the advances of her would-be gentleman admirer. (Admittedly, this may be more than you ever wanted to know about skunk romance.)

Eww, That Smell

Skunks are gentle, non-aggressive creatures, which may explain why nature gave them a particularly odoriferous defense in the form of a musk that’s expelled from the animal’s backside when it’s frightened or angry. Skunk spray smells so noxious because it consists of a mixture of chemicals containing sulfur (such as thiols), which are notorious for their pungent and nauseating odor, according to the website Science ABC.

How Long Will It Last?

If you do have skunks carrying on building families in your yard, be prepared for a relatively long process. After mating, which happens in February or March, skunks have a 60-day gestation period, and babies are born blind and deaf and nursed in the den by the mother for about six weeks.

Fluffy Has Been Sprayed. Now What?

Dogs are often victims of skunk spraying. If your dog is sprayed by a neighborhood skunk, don’t despair. Neutralizing the chemicals contained in a skunk’s “stink” is quite easy. A combination of baking soda and hydrogen peroxide is a very good strategy to get rid of the skunk smell on dogs, cats or other household pets.

Smells Can Be Tracked Into the House

If skunks spray near one of the main entrances of your house, the scent can be tracked inside and permeate the air for months. If the smell gets on home surfaces such as tile, mopping with a bleach solution can counter the scent. For surfaces that could be ruined with bleach (hardwood floors, for example), look for one of the pet smell neutralizers such as Nature’s Miracle at a pet store.

Call the Professionals

If you’re unsure of what to do or worried about coming into contact with skunks, it’s best to let experts determine a safe and compliant way to get the animals to leave. Pest management professionals like Anderson Wildlife will find the most humane way to make sure your wild friends aren’t making a stink.

Squirrels, while adorable, are one of the most destructive rodents roaming the earth. If you have noticed several squirrels in your area, be aware, there is a good chance they could ruin the exterior of your home, including your roof.

Squirrels Are Expert Climbers

Squirrels love to scale trees, climb up your house, and hop up onto the roof of your home. While they’re at it, they frequently gnaw on everything from attic vents, to wooden shutters, to the actual siding of your home.

It’s All In the Teeth

A squirrel’s teeth will continue to grow throughout their entire adult lives. That is why they are incessant chewers; it keeps their teeth trimmed. When they run out of their normal methods of keeping teeth in check, they move on to other materials, such as the items that make up the exterior of your home, and yes, that means your roof, too.

They Want To Get Inside

As humans continue expanding into natural areas, squirrels are forced to abandon trees and look for alternate means of lodging. Limited habitat combined with colder weather causes squirrels to seek out shelter in suburban garages and attics. Their best entry point is your roof, which means as they seek shelter from the cold, your roof can be paying the price.

How Do You Know If It’s a Squirrel?

Check for signs of damage in and around your home, keeping an eye out for any evidence of gnawing or digging, especially on your roof. As squirrels scratch and claw their way into your home, it is likely that they will cause mild damage to exterior and interior insulation. This damage may make your home more vulnerable to other pests. Like almost all wild animals, squirrels pose a risk of carrying diseases, such as rabies, inside your home.

Prevent Squirrels From Damaging Your Home’s Exterior

Take a walk around the exterior of your home or garage and look for any visible holes, cracks, or openings that could be used as an entrance for squirrels. Seal off any entrances. It’s smart to trim tree limbs that are close to your house as squirrels will use these to jump easily to your roof. Remove or safeguard any bird feeders around your home to avoid attracting hungry and nosy squirrels.

Call the Experts

If you’re unsure of what to do, it’s best to let experts determine a safe and compliant way to help rid you of your problem. Pest management professionals like Anderson Wildlife will find the most humane way to make sure that your new tenants leave the premises and have no desire to come back.

Sounds coming from underneath your house could be from a number of causes. Whether it’s your pipes, the house settling, or the wind, many of these can be explained by structural issues. Of course, there are some sounds that are not at all normal, and if you’re hearing scratching noises from below, don’t count on it being structural or because of weather.

What’s That Sound?

Sound is usually the first clue that you have a critter problem, but not always the most obvious one. Visual confirmation is a surefire way to know when to call a professional. Wildlife can they cause visible damage, such as a chewed and now faulty duct or wire, or you might even see the animal crawling up your house, onto your roof, or through a crawl space below. Usually, it’s the noises that people notice first. Scratching, crawling, and other sounds are a likely clue that you have an unwelcome guest beneath your house.

What’s Really Happening?

The most common cause for those scratching noises is the presence of an animal. Critters just love to get out from the elements, and under your home serves as a perfect refuge from the cold. It’s usually not too hard to tell if the sound is coming from a living thing, as opposed to mere house noises. An animal moves around, it scratches at random, it thumps, scurries, and pitter-patters around.

What Is Causing All Of Those Scratching Sounds?

Scratching may come from a bird, mouse, rat, or possum. Scratching sounds can be indicative of a bigger problem. The sound of a scurrying mouse is almost continuous, while a rat running has a more distinct sound from the impact of their paws. Biting or gnawing sounds can be heard when rodents sharpen their teeth on plumbing, wiring or cables, or gnaw around entry holes to make them bigger.

What You Can Do To Protect Your Home

It’s important to plug up all available holes or block any open areas that lead underneath your home. If you want to call the experts in home pest control, trust Anderson Wildlife for pest control and safe wildlife removal from your home and work as well as preventing their return. Contact us today!