Squirrels may be an entertaining sight when they scamper around in a park, but not when they’re wreaking havoc in your home. Our NJ pest control experts share these helpful facts about squirrels.
Types of NJ Squirrels
The most common species of squirrel found in New Jersey is the gray squirrel. “Gray” is something of a misnomer, as it’s actually a combination of white, black and brown fur that creates the illusion of gray.
New Jersey is also home to both northern flying squirrels and southern flying squirrels. Instead of wings, these squirrels have membranes from arms to chest and between the legs that allow them to glide, giving the appearance of flying.
The northern flying squirrel prefers to live in wooded areas, high up in the trees. So, if you find flying squirrels in your home they’re likely to be the southern variety.
In order to control their constantly growing teeth, squirrels need to gnaw, which causes significant damage to wood, wires and even pipes. Squirrels also spread disease directly through biting and indirectly through their droppings.
Rocket Raccoon was a member of Guardians of the Galaxy, but in real life raccoons are not so heroic. Here’s some helpful information about these wildlife intruders from our NJ pest control team.
Raccoons: Cute but Deadly
Raccoons are often associated with being in the country, but these durable critters have made their way into more densely populated areas. They’ve become so acclimated to urban and suburban areas that they find houses to be an appealing place to nest.
While kids in particular may find raccoons cute to watch, their behavior is anything but. Raccoons can be vicious when they feel threatened, and they’ve been known to attack humans and other animals. According to the CDC, raccoons are one of the primary wildlife carriers of rabies, second only to bats.
Destructive Raccoon Behavior
As true omnivores, raccoons will eat just about anything they find. Unfortunately, this often leads them to search dumpsters and garbage cans for meals. As a result, you can become ill just coming into contact with their left-behind fur.
Like squirrels, raccoons living in your attic will gnaw on wood, wires and other materials, resulting in significant structural damage. Their urine and feces contain germs that, if airborne, will create a major health risk.
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While raccoons live primarily in woodlands and marshes, they can survive in any place that has a ready source of water. Food is seldom a problem as raccoons are omnivorous, eating whatever is available from birds, fish and small mammals to fruits and nuts.
Unfortunately, the tendency of raccoons to eat anything can result in serious damage to their surroundings. Raccoons pose a major threat to agricultural areas, where they feed on crops and kill poultry. Residential areas are susceptible to torn-up lawns as raccoons look for insects and earthworms.
When Raccoons Venture Indoors
Attics, chimneys, decks and crawlspaces are popular winter hideouts for raccoons. Thanks to their nocturnal nature and quiet demeanor, raccoons can easily hide indoors undetected for long periods. Even more dangerous than the threat of destruction is the health risk posed by raccoons, who are known to carry rabies and roundworm.
Female raccoons, much like their human counterparts, have a strong nesting instinct when it comes to raising a family. But what happens when mama raccoon chooses your home for her nest? Here’s why NJ raccoon control is so important during nesting season.
What’s That Noise in the Attic?
If you discover a raccoon in your attic, chances are good that it’s a female who’s seeking a comfy home for her brood. While nesting season can vary in different parts of the country, March is usually the peak time for raccoon births. Unfortunately, male raccoons kill babies that don’t belong to them, which is another reason for females to seek shelter.
Unlike squirrels and other wildlife, raccoons don’t build elaborate nests. The mother raccoon will simply shred insulation in the attic until there’s a sufficient amount to burrow inside. Raccoons create “latrines” around nests for depositing their feces and urine, which often carry parasites and bacteria that pose a serious health threat to humans.
Maternal Instinct of Female Raccoons
If you find a raccoon prowling around your home, always assume there are babies nearby. Separating a mother from her brood is never a good idea, so it’s best to seek help from NJ raccoon control professionals for safe removal.
Safe and Humane NJ Raccoon Control by Stern Environmental
Our trained technicians have extensive experience removing raccoons, squirrels and other wildlife invaders. Contact us to schedule an appointment.
The eastern gray squirrel is a common sight in NJ when you’re outdoors. However, these animals could end up inside your attic or other indoor areas to escape the cold, which means it’s time for NJ pest animal control. While you might be familiar with squirrels, here are some facts that you might not know.
Eastern gray squirrels are considered an invasive species in the US. In fact, they’ve displaced the native red squirrel in some parts of the region. They’re native to the eastern US and the midwestern US, although they’ve spread to the western regions.
Most gray squirrels are gray, although they can be brown. In urban areas, some of these squirrels end up with white or black fur coloring due to the low risk of predators.
Eastern gray squirrels hoard food in numerous locations. They have excellent spatial memory that helps them remember where all of their food caches are.
Squirrels usually feed on seeds, berries, nuts and similar items. However, they’re also known to prey on frogs, birds and other animals. They also gnaw on antlers and bones for minerals.
Eastern gray squirrels use tail movements, facial expressions and vocalizations to communicate. They even make a purring noise when interacting with their young.