The cute little chipmunks that scurry around from here to there are just waiting for a handout. They will live under your foundation; eat your plants, dog food, birdseed, or any little tidbits that they can find laying around. They may get into your garage, bird feeders or potting shed. This member of the squirrel family tends to also eat bird eggs and hatchlings. Even with this rap, these omnivores are beneficial to spreading seeds in nature.
What Can You Do To Prevent Chipmunks From Taking Up Residence
The Chipmunk is a great scavenger and will clean up any yard of decaying animals, bugs and grubs but also they like seeds, fruits and berries or just about anything that is left lying around. One of the best preventions to these little creatures is to keep a neat and tidy yard. This includes rock piles, brush piles, stacks of firewood, and thick bushes. They love to make homes in any of these nooks and crannies.
The Chipmunk has an extensive burrow that they live in and store their food in. Unlike their cousin the squirrel they live on the ground so everything that is accessible on the surface is fair game. It is possible to scare the Chipmunk with such things as an owl or hawk decoy that are their natural predator. Another ruse from a predator is the fox urine pellets, although this does not work in large areas it is something that the animals will stay away from.
Closer To The Residence
Since Chipmunks will burrow under foundations it is a good idea to put up barriers around foundations and sheds that are at least eight inches deep under the ground. Also by keeping the grass trimmed around buildings you will deter the animals from the base since they do not like to be in the open. It they do get into the crawlspace it will be important to watch how they are getting in and then closing it off so they do not have access.
Techniques And Exclusions
It is possible to trap the Chipmunks and remove them from the area, but you will need to go at least two miles to prevent them from returning. There are traps to catch the little animals that can be set close to the area where you think that they are living. It may be wise to have a professional remove them and take them away. If you do decide to trap them the only other way that is fairly easy is to throw a towel over them if you can get close enough, but you are taking a chance of getting bite or hurt in the process.
It is best to create an environment that is not compatible with the Chipmunk by removing all dog food and cat food from the area. These little animals are quite skilled at finding and getting at the food if it is detected so make sure that it is in a sealed container where the smell cannot escape. Most people enjoy feeding the birds but in the process end up feeding everything else around. One deterrent to the Chipmunk is to feed birds’ thistle seed instead of sunflower seeds. They do not like the thistle and will stay away from it. This will provide a food source for your birds without feeding the chipmunks.
Since these critters like to house under foundations and around stacked firewood and large bushes it is good to add repellants that will keep the Chipmunk from setting up home. A natural repellant is the moth balls. If you take several moth balls and put them in an old sock then place several of the socks around the yard especially around prime areas for habitat it will deter the Chipmunks for coming around. There are some strong advocates of this method while others will suggest it doesn’t work at all.
We are the Pest Education Network, a non-profit organization that focuses on wildlife and pest removal education. Our approach utilizes Integrated Pest Management, a strategy advocating prevention and humane methods.