While most of us enjoy the natural beauty of wildlife in the 'great outdoors', we prefer to keep them out of the confines of our homes or businesses. Below are some tips on wildlife proofing your home or business.
WARNING: Make sure that all animals have left the problem area BEFORE you attempt to cover it. To avoid accidentally trapping an animal - in the early evening, place flour on the ground outside or just inside the area you intend to cover. Early the next morning check the flour to determine if there is an animal in that area.
Wildlife Proofing Tip #1 - DO NOT leave food out for animals
This INCLUDES GARBAGE! Keep all refuse in locked garage or home until right before trash pick-up
Spray garbage containers with ammonia or pinesol to keep animals away
Wrap all chicken in foil and plastic bags to keep aroma from attracting animals
Keep BIRD FEEDERS as far away from the house as possible
Wildlife Proofing Tip #2 - Invest in 1/2" wire hardware cloth!
Use 1/2" wire hardware cloth to cover all vent openings on the outside of your home/business, and for under cement stoops and decks as follows:
Fireplace/Furnace Chimney - use a commercial cap secured to the chimney, or wire hardware cloth secured to the sides of the chimney to prevent birds, squirrels and other animals from entering
Soil Stack, Bathroom/Kitchen Exhaust Fan, Soffit Vents - cover the outside w/hardware cloth
Dryer Vent - cover outside w/hardware cloth but LEAVE 1/2" UNCOVERED on the bottom to prevent the vent from getting clogged with lint. Check monthly to insure that the opening is not completely blocked.
Attic Exhaust Fan & End Louvres of Attic - cover the inside w/hardwire cloth (for the Exhaust Fan, cover only the bottom of the fan & staple it to the rafter - usually an 18" square piece)
Cement Stoops & Decks - Create "L"-shaped pieces of the hardwire cloth, burying the bottom section of the "L" at least 3" underground to prevent burrowing. For decks, staple the cloth to the joists to deter animals from living under the deck.
Window Wells - Cover the top of window wells with commercial covers and place screening over the drainage vent on the bottom
Wildlife Proofing Tip #3 - Remove rubbish from property
Remove rubbish piles, stored autos or vehicles and keep wood piles stacked at least 2 feet above ground to remove places that a wild animal might decide to use as a home
Miscellaneous Other Wildlife Proofing Tips
Garage Doors & Car Windows - keep closed at all times, especially after dark
Information about rehabilitating injured wildlife and educational programs can be found at Utopia Wildlife Rehabilitators.