Get rid of chipmunks by ensuring your environment cleaned, making bird food unreachable; pepper your plant, trying pest repellants, and more. While there are pest control companies to help you get rid and prevent many rodents, including chipmunks, there are still other home remedies to achieve this goal.
Chipmunk is one rodent a lot of people often overlook. You may not consider chipmunk to be the worst nightmare for your garden at first, but just wait until they dug holes all over your yard, chewed up the tomato seeds you just planted or eaten your entire tulip roots.
If you are facing chipmunks’ problems at your home, you will need to know the right ways to get rid of them. Fortunately, there are certain steps to take to get rid of chipmunks faster and humanely. Let’s look at it together!
What are chipmunks and what do they look like?
If you want to find out the ways to get rid of chipmunks, you must first ensure that you know how they look at first. The right identification will help you select the right option for removal.
Chipmunks belong to the family of squirrel, but their size is smaller than squirrels and they majorly dwell on the ground. Chipmunks are good at climbing but often travel and feed on the ground, and they dig underground burrows where they live.
Eastern chipmunks (found in eastern and the Midwest United States) can measure 12-inch long, with a three to five-inch tail and their fur is reddish-brown in color as well as 5 dark stripes on their backs. They can weigh around 2 – 5 ounces.
Western chipmunks (native to the Western United States and Canada) are a bit smaller, at around 2 ounces and 6 – 11 inches long. They can feature white stripping and normally contain darker stripping on their faces than those found in the east.
How do you identify Chipmunk Infestation?
Chipmunks can be quick and calm, which makes them difficult to locate. Below are a few ways to discover a chipmunk problem.
- Evidence of damage in the yard or flower beds: Do you observe that something has been feeding on your flowers, plants, and fruits? You may be experiencing a chipmunk infestation. Usually, chipmunks decide to burrow in yards and flower beds, so watch out for damage to your yard
- Tiny footprints in the yard: If you have chipmunk infestation in your yard, you may notice chipmunk footprints there. There are 4 toes on chipmunk’s front feet as well as five toes on their hind feet. Check for prints in the dirt across your yard, garden, or garden shed.
- Cracked sidewalks and problems with the foundation of your house: This could be proof that chipmunks are constructing tunnels below your walkways and home. If you notice any presence of chipmunks tunneling across your house, you will need to tackle the pest infestation as soon as possible to prevent damage to the building.
- A loud chirping sound: Think there is a chipmunk inside your home? Did you hear any high-pitched chirping noises? If you discover a chipmunk in your home, just find a way to make them easily escape. Truth is; they also want to escape your house as fast as they can.
Eight (8) Tips to get rid of Chipmunks in and around your Home
Below are ways to get rid of chipmunks on and around your property:
1. Make Bird Food Unreachable
The most convenient way to serve these tiny creatures an eviction notice is by getting rid of the things that attract them into your home in the first place. Start by positioning your bird feeder high above the ground and at about 15-ft from fences and other structures. Ensure you often clean up spilled food items, and consider using feed with extra hot pepper, which birds will eat but chipmunks can’t stand. Chipmunks feed on the ground and are drawn to seed dropped from bird feeders. To help take their eyes off bird feeders:
- Always clean up spilled or dropped seed
- Go for seeds to which squirrels (particularly chipmunks) are not attracted, like thistle
- Position bird feeders at about 15 – 30 feet far from any structure
- Maintain standard steps to prevent squirrels from bird feeders
2. Rune and Clean Up Bushes and Trees
To prevent chipmunks’ infestation in your home, ensure you always prune trees and bushes on your property. Trim down any tree limbs or shrubbery that contacts your roof. This will make it difficult for them to climb on top of the building. Also, trim the bottom part of shrubs and bushes to prevent chipmunks from burrowing below it. Immediately chipmunks feel their burros can no longer be hidden under shrubs, they will possibly vacate to a much safer place.
3. Pepper your Plants
Talking of hot pepper, try to use pepper spray or just spray hot sauce underneath your plants to prevent chipmunks’ infestation. Know that this approach may affect pollinators since the capsaicin in cayenne is harmful to bees. If that gets you worried, you might want to consider sprinkling blood meal or use a commercial deer repellant. You can also keep the intruders away by using bulbs and stems covered in thiram (an animal repellant and fungicide present in many garden sprays), or you could just plant posies that chipmunks find sour, such as allium and daffodils.
4. Trapping and Releasing
This is one great way of handling a persistent animal infestation from your home. Read the local laws and recommendations as regards relocating chipmunks in your location before you try to trap a chipmunk. Relocation may be illegal in some areas. Follow the simple tips below for trapping and relocating a chipmunk:
- Pick a small trap (roughly 10 – 20 inches long) with small wire mesh to prevent the chipmunk from escaping
- Position the traps in spots where you notice chipmunk activity, such as near burrows and traffic paths. Places like undercover are preferable to exposed locations.
- Ensure you bait the trap in a way that chipmunks cannot get to it from outside the trap. The most effective approach is to apply peanut butter straight to the trigger plate of the trap.
- Always check on the trap, and relocate these critters as soon as you find them trapped. Release in a nice environment at least 5 miles from your location, or as indicated by local law.
5. Try Repellents
There are no special repellents registered for use against chipmunks, and using repellents is kind of controversial. However, according to the Humane Society, commercial repellents that are active against squirrels will also work against chipmunks. These are some squirrel repellents:
- Thiram applied to stems, plant bulbs, or bark.
- Homemade repellent: Mothballs or flakes (Naphthalene) are positioned across gardens. Prepare a homemade chipmunk repellent by mixing a teaspoon of Lysol, three ounces of Epson salt, and a gallon of water
- Live traps: Live traps: Such as the Kensizer Small Animal Humane Live Cage can trap chipmunks without causing them any harm so that you can nicely get rid of them from your garden.
- Ultrasonic devices: You can get rid of chipmunks from your garden and prevent them from coming using sound from an ultrasonic device such as the Gardens Secrets Compact Solar Ultrasonic Animal Repellant.
- Granular repellent: The Havahart Critter Ridder 3146 Animal Repellent is a granular repellent and is not harmful to chipmunks but can help prevent them from entering your yard by repelling them using taste and odor
- Repellent spray: Spraying Ortho Animal B Gon All-Purpose Animal Repellent Ready to Use Spray on your yard is also an effective means of repelling chipmunk infestation using offensive scents to the animals.
6. Set up a Barricade
The best defense in some cases is a good defense. You can prevent your yard from chipmunks’ burrows and make your garden a turn off to them by putting up L-Shaped barriers of mesh fencing or hardware cloth around the foundation of your house, sidewalks, fences, porches, and more. You may also use this hardware cloth on top of bulbs, and garden beds as it will sprout directly through it. Or buy bulb cages to prevent chipmunks from nibbling on them. Experts also mentioned that surrounding your home with a gravel border is helpful, rather than one made with plants, such as box shrubs.
Are chipmunks carriers of diseases?
Chipmunks can carry a lot of diseases, such as plague, Rocky Mountain spotted fever, rabies, and Colorado tick fever.
Do chipmunks bite?
Chipmunks don’t attack humans but they can bite them, which can lead to disease transmission
Can chipmunks be caught or killed by cats?
There are lots of reports of chipmunks being caught or killed by pet cats from around a garden. Even though chipmunks are fast, cats are faster. If you own a cat that hunts perfectly, it may help reduce a chipmunk problem.
How do pest professionals handle chipmunks?
You can get a pest professional who will catch and relocate the animals in your yard. Before you contact a pest pro, make sure you ask for a full description of how they handle chipmunks.
Need to hire the Service of a Professional Pest Control Company?
If the chipmunk infestation is beyond control, then your best play is to call in the professionals. For assistance locating a professional pest control company, check our best professional pet control service providers for your household.
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