Despite their cuteness, chipmunks should be dealt with carefully as they carry diseases that can affect your health, therefore, having chipmunk traps at hand is a smart thing to do if you place is visited by these mammals. In our recent post, we have detailed how to trap squirrels when needed yet there are some differences between them and chipmunks.
If you want to learn more about what makes them different and how to keep chipmunks away from your place, read on. You will find below a few important facts about chipmunks and effective ways to keep them at bay or prevent them from reaching your home.
Chipmunks versus squirrels
Sometimes, it might be a bit difficult to tell the difference between various species of squirrels. While chipmunks and squirrels fall into the bigger species of squirrels, there are some things that set them apart.
Chipmunks are smaller with a maximum length of 1 foot. They are also lighter and weigh less than 6 ounces when fully developed. Common species of chipmunks include the Eastern and Western chipmunks. Squirrels are heavier and longer.
What makes chipmunks dangerous?
Many people tend to overlook the dangers chipmunks come with and are blinded by their cuteness. Despite the way they look, they can jeopardize your health, therefore, knowing more of what to do or not when it comes to a chipmunk becomes very much of a matter of personal protection.
If the chipmunk gets bitten by an infected flea or tick or hosts such a pest, the animal becomes a disease carrier. The diseases they can transmit to humans include rabies, Colorado tick fever, Rocky Mountain spotted fever, and the plague.
If you get bitten or scratched by a chipmunk, make sure to see your doctor as soon as possible. Don’t take things too lightly as such events pose serious health risks.
As is often the case, prevention is the first step you need to take in order to avoid the unwanted events and health problems chipmunks can lead to. Although it may difficult resist the urge of feeding these cute rodents, you should always be aware that they can carry a disease that may put your health in jeopardy.
Therefore, try not to feed chipmunks in the wild and when you go camping, try to avoid areas near animal burrows. Needless to say, never touch injured chipmunks, not to mention dead ones. In case you that happens, ask for your doctor’s help and take the necessary measures to sanitize the area that has been touched.
Make sure your garden is organized in such a way to discourage chipmunks from exploring it. Leave no food outside and go for plants that chipmunks and other such animals are not attracted to. Try to keep your yard as clean as possible without any areas that could provide chipmunks with shelter or food.
This requires you to remove any piles of debris, wood, or rocks as they may be used by chipmunks to shelter. Clean up the bird seeds that fall from the bird feeders, berries, nuts, and other such foods that may end up on the ground.
A good way to get a chipmunk-proof garden is to use galvanized wire mesh and lay it along the ground the rodents may dig. Use mulch or grass to cover it. Use the mesh to create an L-shaped barrier that will stop them from accessing the foundation of your house, your porch, or other crawl spaces.
Keep in mind that chipmunks will target bird feeders, so it is recommended to place the feeders 15 feet away from your house and other buildings. When the seed spill, chipmunks will seize them to feed. By placing them away from your home, you will keep the unwanted guests at bay.
If chipmunks do reach your garden despite taking the above-mentioned measures or if you want a simpler and faster way to rid of them, you can try a chipmunk trap. The market now offers many trap models that are not only efficient but also easy to use. You will have to place a chipmunk bait inside it to attract the chipmunk.
Such traps are usually are small and extra small in order for the animals not to escape. They won’t take too much place but you must not forget about them when moving around your garden.
If you get to trap a chipmunk, make sure you don’t keep it inside for too long and release carefully into the wild but do so only after you’ve taken all the safety measures such as wearing the right gloves.
Another effective and popular method employed in keeping chipmunks at bay is the use of repellents. You will find the classic chipmunk repellents that affect taste and that will thus deter the pesky rodents. Use granular repellents such as the ones based on pepper and create a barrier around your garden, plants, mulch beds, and other things you want to protect.
The market now also offers liquid repellents that can be easily sprayed on various surfaces including bulbs and bird feeders. Just make sure to rid the label before applying it and use it as instructed to avoid unpleasant effects.
To be sure that chipmunks won’t reach your home, you can also use electronic repellents. These products use motion detection to spook the chipmunks. When the animals are detected, the repellent will spray water to discourage them from advancing.
These repellents are very popular since they contain no chemicals and can be used to protect a variety of things, plants, flower beds, and trees. However, they may not be fully effective when used alone. Therefore, consider the granular or liquids repellents as well and use them together for permanent chipmunk removal.
A single chipmunk removal method may prove to be ineffective. For a complete approach, try to take the prevention steps mentioned above and add repellents to all that.