Rats, mice, bats, tree squirrels, raccoons, opossums, flying squirrels, groundhogs, chipmunks, pigeons, starlings, sparrows, and snakes are all wild animals that have their own specific place in the natural order of things.
As long as they are there and their wildlife is working they are fine.
The problem is that once they enter a Pittsburgh residence or commercial building in search of food and shelter, the equation changes.
They become a health hazard in addition to being a nuisance.
Once inside, they can chew wires that can cause fires, destroy property and landscaping, eat drywall, and in some cases carry rabies.
Although folk remedies, including some plants, work with some pests, they are not as effective at repelling wildlife.
It’s best to use the services of a tried-and-true pest-control and pest-maintenance company like the ones we offer.
An essential principle of wildlife solutions is to focus on removal from premises rather than destruction.
It’s not just out of kindness, because elimination can lead to dead animals stuck to walls and crawlspaces, which are difficult, if not impossible, to access.
Exclusionary tactics are commonly employed By professionals who know where to look and the best approach for each type of wildlife threat.
Pittsburgh pests that are considered wildlife
Below is a list of wildlife categories and a bit of each in terms of the specific problems they present as well as our pest removal techniques.
Bat infestations are common in the state of Pennsylvania, and their urine and droppings, known as guano and containing high levels of uric acid, can damage and degrade house structures, causing decay, wood rot and staining.
Acids damage the protective patina of both copper and bronze and affect the bonding elements of stone and concrete. According to the Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC), harming bats is illegal in most states.
Before removing bats, check state regulations and make sure the pest-control and pest-control agency you choose complies with these rules. Bats are integral to a healthy ecosystem because they eat insects.
They need protection because they have low reproductive rates and must be humanely removed using sustainable exclusion techniques.
They are playful critters that are often fun to watch, and while they don’t really cause property damage, chipmunks can hit ornamental plants when they gather fruit and nuts.
They sometimes dig up spring flower bulbs and make holes in flower beds or in sidewalks and balconies.
They are not disease carriers like other rodent species, but they are undesirable around landscaping and gardens and need to be humanely trapped and released by experts like our technicians at Pestco.
Groundhogs usually seek shelter under sheds and garages.
They gnaw and scratch fruit and ornamental plants, and their burrow entrances can pose a danger to humans and horses because they are not clearly visible and can inadvertently break an ankle or leg by breaking in.
Groundhogs also carry fleas and ticks, which transmit Lyme disease and powassan to both humans and pets.
If not properly controlled, they can cause serious structural damage when burrowing, as their tunnels are widely known to collapse building foundations.
These critters are not known to be aggressive, but if provoked they will bar their impressive set of 50 teeth.
If they bite, it can be a nasty one.
They are vectors of dangerous pathogens that cause some serious diseases, such as: tuberculosis, leptospirosis, spotted fever, coccidiosis, tularemia, toxoplasmosis and others, although their transmission is rare.
Opossums are drawn to people’s homes and yards in search of food and water.
They will also find places where they can set up burrows, such as under porches or in attics.
Pigeons are often found around farm yards, grain elevators, feed mills, parks, city buildings, bridges, and other places that provide shelter and nesting sites.
Their droppings in large numbers are known to kill plants.
In modern times, pigeons are probably the most serious bird pests associated with humans and their homes.
Although the presence of pigeons is also associated with the transmission of many diseases including: pigeon ornithosis, encephalitis, salmonella food poisoning and others, it is difficult to determine the actual number of cases of infection due to the lack of reports on outbreaks.
It is known, however, that if pigeon manure is allowed to accumulate, within a few years, it can be a cause of histoplasmosis infection, a systemic fungal disease that affects the human respiratory system.
Pigeons can even pose a threat to human safety around airports, where flocks can collide with aircraft and cause fatalities.
These insects find a place, which serves as a toilet for everyone.
Their feces are vectors of roundworm larvae, which are toxic to humans.
Homeowners should avoid cleaning up raccoon waste and contact Pestco experts immediately if they find one of their latrines in their yard.
Scratches on the walls of the house or in the attic may indicate a raccoon (or squirrel) infestation.
They can very quickly cause serious damage to walls and cables.
Rats and mice
Rats and mice are known to cause structural damage to homes, apartments, offices, and any other type of structure that prevents them from entering.
They do this by crawling, building nests and defecating on anything.
They destroy packaged food, clothes, books, wood, paintings, paper and furniture.
Although a single rat eats about three grams of food per day, it is estimated that it contaminates and destroys 10 times more food than it consumes.
An infestation should be treated professionally by expert pest-control and pest maintenance technicians.
The front claws Mother Nature gives skunks allow them to burrow and tunnel under buildings, sheds, decks and concrete foundations, endangering home and business structures and causing extensive damage to property and landscaping.
Skunks also eat poultry eggs, destroy green enclosures, tear up ornamental plants and do a lot of damage to apiaries.
Removing snakes from an infested property can be very difficult and should always be done with extreme caution and only by qualified pest removal professionals.
Many poisonous species look similar to harmless ones, and knowing the difference can be a matter of life and death.
Most states require homeowners to contact the local parks and wildlife department before attempting to remove or relocate snakes.
Squirrels can enter a residential or commercial building through the smallest of openings.
Once inside, they are known to chew their way through roof shingles, house siding, and anything else that blocks their entry.
In attics, squirrels scurry into wires and join lines on walls.
They destroy furniture, pantries, food supplies and destroy gardens and landscaping in search of food.
Flying squirrels can also cause considerable damage to exterior trim and siding as they are known to make or pave their way in. inside
They congregate in attics and wall voids and do considerable damage by tearing up wall insulation, chewing electrical wires, and spreading nastiness throughout a home with their urine and droppings.
Starlings and Sparrows
None of these bird species are native to North America or have any natural predators, making their presence problematic.
Large sparrow and starling populations can adversely affect human health and safety.
House sparrows are known to be very aggressive and cause significant havoc in gardens where they displace more beneficial songbirds.
Their nests are often built in or near buildings, where they become a fire hazard.
Sparrow droppings not only disfigure and damage structures and are difficult to remove, they carry and spread West Nile virus.
Starlings prefer to feed on other larvae, but they also eat seeds, fruit, garbage, and spilled food.
5 things to know about wildlife removal
1. A permit may be required
Some animals, including skunks, raccoons, squirrels and even snakes, are considered eligible for protection, while others are not.
For example, the state of Pennsylvania removes protections from wildlife that appear to be sick or diseased, pose a risk to people or livestock, or damage property.
Only property owners or licensed professionals can remove wildlife that falls into these categories, and removal and disposal of these wildlife must still follow specific rules.
2. The law protects nuisance animals
Even allowing the removal of a nuisance animal, there are still specifics Restrictions on trapping or removal of wildlife.
In the state of Illinois, a homeowner must prove that they pose a threat to human health or safety before removing skunks and raccoons from a property.
Skunks must be euthanized by a licensed professional, and raccoons can only be released on the same property that they were trapped in.
3. It is illegal to release wildlife on public land
Most states have laws prohibiting the release of wildlife on federal, state, or local government lands.
It is also illegal to release an animal onto property owned by another person. The nearest city, state or national park is not a legal site for releasing wildlife, although it may seem so.
4. Wildlife not for sale
Most states have laws that prevent citizens from keeping, selling, or giving away wildlife caught on private property.
All animals must be released in an approved facility or euthanized by pest-control and pest-maintenance specialists.
5. Indoor wildlife should be eliminated rather than eliminated
Wildlife exclusion measures should only be attempted by professionals who attend monthly seminars to keep them abreast of new techniques and solutions.
Pesticides are used sparingly and only as a last resort.
Call Pestco for your Pittsburgh wildlife removal needs!
Although the cost of wildlife control can vary by location, size of home, type of wildlife pest And other related matters, we offer friendly, economical and most effective solutions for Pittsburgh homeowners.
We are a five-star, family-run company that has been in continuous operation since the late 1940s, and we offer customized service plans and guaranteed results.
Call our teams today and find out how you can humanely and affordably remove wildlife from your private property!
Final Thoughts on Wildlife: The continued existence of wildlife and wilderness is critical to human quality of life. ~ Jim Fowler
Photo credit: Pixabay