Before forcing out raccoons from your home, you need to find out how they’re getting in. Give your house a thorough inspection to find locations where raccoons could get in by viewing your home from the viewpoint of an animal looking for a den.
Signs of Raccoons in the Attic
To figure out if an opening is being used, block the hole loosely with wadded newspaper. Leave it in place for 2 to 3 days. If the newspaper is undisturbed, and the weather condition has not been particularly cold or stormy, nothing is using it as an entrance. If the paper is pushed out of place, something has moved in.
Sounds in the Attic
It’s worth repeating that raccoons are the biggest animals you will discover in a metropolitan setting. Because of their size and weight, the sounds they make are quickly discernable as the sounds coming from a bigger animal. If you’re hearing thumping sounds, it’s a sure sign a raccoon is in the attic. No other urban pest is big enough to produce stomping sounds. Squirrels will scurry and bang around, but a raccoon actually will sound like a small person is up there.
Once you understand how they’re getting in, discover if your undesirable guests happen to be a mother raccoon with young. If so, the very best thing to do is wait a few weeks up until the infants are old enough to leave their mother– they will not survive without her.
Do not try to trap and move the family yourself. It usually causes separation, and probably death, of the young raccoons, unless done by an expert who understands how to reunite moms with their offspring. The reunion approach allows the mom to move her young to another den site at her own pace.
Some specialists utilize a “one-way door” to get raccoons out of attics or crawl areas. As soon as the animals have left, they’re not able to get back inside.
Humane Harassment to Get Them Out
If you understand that you are dealing exclusively with adults, you can begin using humane techniques to get them to leave on their own.
- Start little. Gentle methods might be all you require. Try intense lights, loud noises like setting a loud battery-operated radio in the attic or in the fireplace, and unpleasant smells, like a bowl of cider vinegar at the base of the chimney.
- Combine methods. Multisensory harassment works best: light, sound, and smell.
- Choose the right time– at sunset, right prior to the mom’s regular activity period. Don’t drive raccoons out during the day. Raccoons are primarily nocturnal, so they might be puzzled during the day, and they are definitely more vulnerable.
Close All Entries to Keep Them Out
Convincing the raccoon to leave is just half the problem. The 2nd step is to prevent raccoons, and other animals, from going inside again. Many individuals put out a trap, capture the raccoon and eliminate or transfer her. However unless you seal entries into your home, there’s nothing to stop another animal from moving in.
Never close an entranceway until you’re definitely sure all the raccoons have actually left. For your own and the raccoon’s safety, you don’t wish to trap a raccoon or her young inside your home.
As soon as you find possible points of entry, make sure no raccoons are inside and have completed any essential clean-up, cover all openings with heavy products, such as wire mesh, sheet metal, or metal flashing. The very best wire mesh for the job is at least 16-gauge material with 1/2-inch openings.
A note about raccoon waste: In places where raccoons have lived for a long time, feces might have accumulated. Take care to avoid direct exposure to roundworm eggs, which can be found in raccoon feces.
How Do Raccoons Get in Attic?