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Ground Squirrels

Posted by
srb
(srbforum@hotmail.com) on
Fri, Jun 15, 01 at 10:36

How do I get rid of ground squirrels. Those little chipmunk looking things that make all those tunnels along the side of your house and under the driveway and places like that. I hate these pesky little critters. They are a real nuisance and I hate all those tunnels. They even chew or scratch the paint off of my door frames and I'm tired of that. They're very destructive little critters.


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Ground Squirrels

Get a cat!


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RE: Ground Squirrels

The neighbors have got cats and they are prowling around all the time and I know they're after those stupid little ground squirrels. But, those little critters got so many holes to go into and the cats don't seem to be able to get them, at least they haven't gotten all of them. The little pests persist. I have been able to shoot them every now and then but they usually just zip off into a hole and I can't get them. I've tried poison grain and pellets too. I've tried hot pepper sauce too.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

Human hair is supossed to really irritate them. Stuff it down their holes and it gets on their fur. The human odor also acts as repellent.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

I'll try the human hair. We always have a wad of it on the shower drain. I wonder if that's too clean.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

Ah yes. Ground squirrels. The bane of my existence for two long years. Every day I found more holes, some of them under the slab floors of the pole barns, where they excavated so much sand for their burrows that the concrete cracked. We had fleas in our yard for the first time and I had to have it treated. And of course you know those little bas****s were out there laughing at the dog and I each time I came home. And then they started to eat the house. I don't know what it was, but they'd climb onto the cedar siding with their little devil-like claws and gnaw away, I'm sure trying to infiltrate. It finally became apparent that I would have to do something to the cute little creatures when I came home one day to find almost a dozen of them out on the lawn. They scattered when I let the dog out to their respective homes, but I knew this gang of terrorists would be back.

That night, dreams of chipmunks and ground squirrels ran through my head; all of them sitting in lawn chairs on my lawn drinking tiny little bottles of beer and laughing at the dog and I. I vowed to get them the next morning, reasoning that I, a much larger and more intelligent creature, would have no trouble ridding my world of these horrid little things.

So, armed with my superior intellect and trusty dog, we set out. Our first plan was to scare them away; so I stuffed everything from rat poison to salt down their holes. I used hair, human and dog (I brushed the dog so much I thought she'd go bald). I used vinegar. I tried ammonia. I tried bleach. I tried bleach and ammonia and had my own version of WWI mustard gas (long day that was). I tried commerical killers and homemade ones. I used everything I could find in the kitchen cupboards, garage, and under the sink to drive them out (being careful, of course, not to poison the groundwater by doing something stupid, like using oil or gas). I tried salt, pepper, cayenne pepper, and even sprayed some of the holes with Mace. Nope. They used the condiments on the tree parts they had ripped down and were now feeding on. Probably used the ammonia and bleach to clean out their dens, and the poison was ineffective.

By this time, of course, I was really racking my brain to figure this one out. The dog and I pondered than decided to get mean. I tried flushing them out with water. Well, the first hole took forever to fill (those things can be big), so I turned up the water pressure. When the hole filled, the chipmunk ran out, up my leg, up my chest, and jumped over the dog to another hole. So, I got a shovel. After I filled up the next one, I got ready to bean him (her?) when it ran out. Slowly the hole filled, and finally out popped the squirrel. Just as I started down with the shovel, who steps in to get it but, of course, the dog. I narrowly missed plonking my own dog in the head, and of course this one got away. So on the next hole, when it came out, I let the dog chase it. So, after about three minutes of this ridiculous circus of a 100 lb. dog chasing this little thing, I of course had to jump in. So there are the two of us running around trying to get it. Finally we did. After weeks of planning and operations, we had, with great expenditures, managed to get one of the enemy. But, I must say, it was quite unpleasant, and my wife was mortified.

So, her idea was to capture and relocate them (which I'm against simply because you're basically relocating your problems to someone else). So, out came the hav-a-hart traps, which worked very well. You can get them at Home Depot. I'd set two every morning, baited with animal crackers (that I found to be rather ironic), and each evening, I'd have two. Then my wife would relocate them to the back the woods (3/4 mile). This went on at great length for quite a while until I noticed one day, a particularly surly and tough looking ground squirrel who I thought I'd seen before. He had the "evil squirrel" eyes and a big head. So this one I marked with marking paint. She reloacted them. Two days later, guess what--I had an blaze orange, surly looking chipmunk trapped again. Enough I said.

Oops. Posted enough for now. I'll post back tonight how I finally got rid of them.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

It's kinda like Bill Murray in that Caddyshack movie, ain't it? I'll be looking forward to the rest of your story.........AND how you finally got rid of them.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

SRB, I'm back to finish this twisted and macrabe horror story. By now, of course, I had the things everywhere; under the workshop, the garage, next to the house, the well...and so on. Things were getting desperate.

I tried a couple other measures; I used M80's, which didn't faze them, I thought about capturing them and then drowning them, but that was too horrid even for my mind. But I was close.

The first thing I did was to go around and fill all the holes in the "non-lawn" with concrete. The holes around the well, around the workshop and garage and house...any area that had a hole but wasn't part of the lawn (I didn't want to try and "mow" the concrete, and I didn't want this permenant patch of grey--I could forsee a future time when it was nothing but a patchwork of grey and grass across all of my yard). I used a big funnel and a 7/8" tube connected to it, mixed a slurry of sand mix and entombed the little creatures. We continued to trap; two a day, including Mr. Surly, and the wife transported them to much more distant locations (sorry folks, broke my own word. Don't know where she left them, but my line in the sand was at least five miles). Then, I talked my neighbor (without a dog), to start feeding a couple very large stray cats that were in the neighborhood. He left food and water for them, and these two Toms (they must be--they are huge), begin the prowl. Dog and I went around for two long days finding little squirrel holes and filling them with dirt, rocks, sticks, dynamite (sorry, that was my fantasy), and salt on both my and my neighbor's property. Like I said, the first couple days were long.

We continued this each evening for several weeks; I'd walk the yard and Dog would point out any likely holes. I'd fill them. We'd trap the critters and move them. And I think that the cats did what they were supposed to do.

In all honesty, I think it was the harrassment and "removal" that did them in; removing the trapped ones to somewhere else (you could "dispose" of them if you so choose), and then constantly filling in their holes, pouring crap down them, and so on is what caused the few remaining to move on. However, it took a long time, and I have a sneaky suspicion that the two cats are one of the main reasons we don't see a resurgance. Anyhow, that's my sordid tale; harrassment, removal, and killer animals seem to have done the deed for me. But I check, everytime I mow our here in the country or walk around with the dog. Like the Exorcist Devil, I'm afraid that one day they'll be back.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

Can you tell me more about these Hav-a-hart traps? Is that the actual brand name? We don't seem to have Home Depot around here. They didn't have them at Farm and Fleet. I might try Menard's or Loewe's. Otherwise, you got any suggestions on where to get them?


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RE: Ground Squirrels

Yep, I believe the brand name is Hav-A-Hart. It's also called a live trap. It is basically a rectangular cage of wire, with a handle on top and a door at either end. In the middle is a little metal "dish", for lack of a better word. It relies on a simple mechanism; you put food on the dish (I also found they like Cheezits and Ritz crackers, but don't bother with peanuts or any "natural" food), and then open both doors, which have little arms. A third arm attached to the dish kind of "joins" the door arms; when something sets off the trap, the doors slam, and they have little wire locks so the devil-creatures can't get out.

Hav-A-Hart (and I believe it's the correct spelling, but I'll check), makes a ton of different sizes; you want the squirrel/rat size. It's the smallest they make, and retails for about $20. I'd expect that Lowes would have them. Menards? That's a Michigan store, isn't it? And I'm suprised that Farm and Fleet don't have them.

Oh, and here's something else I found out; if you leave them overnight, they go into a coma. Not a real coma, but a deep sleep. I can only imagine that they have such a high metabolism and body temperature that when they're caught in the trap overnight (when it get's cold), they "semi-hibernate". I caught several, late in the day, and the wife decided to release them on her way to work the next day. Every time we went out to pick them up, they appeared to be dead; very, very shallow breathing, and you could even poke them and they wouldn't stir; I put one out on the driveway, and when the sun came up and finally warmed him/her up (and it took a while), it took a long time to "come back to life". So, if you need to transport them, or do something else, leave them in the cage overnight.

I was out looking for hav-a-whatever traps, and came across this webpage about chipmunk trapping (no, seriously).

http://www.bugspray.com/catalog/products/page398.html

And here's a site that sells the hav-a-hart or whatever (I was actually looking for the correct spelling):

http://wildliferehabber.com/store/nuisance.htm

And here's a decent picture of what one looks like:
http://www.gemplers.com/cgi-bin/sgdu0101.exe?GEN1=index99.htm&SITEID=YiJhchbxV5Q-gTIZokDQV8RBZahck49dXg

Anyhow, if I can remember to get the name, I'll post it.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

Looks like I might be able to buy them on-line, except they only have two sizes. Smallest is no. 1025 which is 18' X 7' X 5'. Do they make a smaller one? Seems fairly big for a ground squirrel. It's $21.96. I've attached the link.

Here is a link that might be useful: Havahart trap


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RE: Ground Squirrels

Yep. That's the one I have. Model 1025. I just ran out to the garage to check the model number. No problem catching ground squirrels. The little "latch" mechnism is very, very sensitive (took me a while to figure out how to set it without having it trip). That's the one. I'd also recommend WalMart Animal Crackers. Chipmunks here in Michigan seem to have an afinity for them. I'd suggest getting one to start with and see how well it works--if you situation is anything like mine was, the $20 was easily spent trying to solve it. With this trap, I've caught them from "mouse" size all the way up to Big Surly size.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

Well,I have nothing to add as far as critter control.Just wanted to jump in and thank Jason for a hilarious story!!I've been on the warpath with voles this year and I can relate.LOL!!!
Peg


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RE: Ground Squirrels

Had a friend who was transplanting these little guys. Our local cemetery has lots of bushes and trees and he took them there. Didn't bother anyone living. LOL


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RE: Ground Squirrels

You're right about the $20 being fairly insignificant. I've know I've probably spent $200 over the past several years on smoke bombs, poison grain, poison pellets, and all that type of stuff. And I've spent many many hours trying to deal with these critters. I've never gotten rid of them. My experience is that they seem to go right back to the same holes and tunnels too. Year after year after year.


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RE: Ground Squirrels Traps Found

Found the traps at Farm and Fleet. I was looking in the wrong area before. I got one outside now. I'll update in a few days about my luck at catching anything. Didn't have any animal crackers, so I'm trying a cracker with peanut butter on it. I'll get some animals crackers if I don't have luck with this.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

My solution:

1. Buy a 3' piece of 2" pvc pipe.
2. Cut a hole in the middle of the pipe.
3. Put rat poison in the hole.
4. Tape over the hole.
5. Be careful so the rat poison doesn't run out the end.
6. Hide the pipe in the bushes, ivy, wood stack, or any other place you see signs of the buggers.
7. repeat.

Randy


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RE: Ground Squirrels

Randy... what kind of rat poison do you use?? I live in FL, and my neighbor's orange tree overhangs my garage. I love the oranges, but hate the "Fruit Rats". They come in my garage and get up on the shelf by my washer. I put out the d-con green pellets in the peel-open boxes and they think it's a holiday buffet. Their 'evidence' increases and the buffet needs to be re-filled every couple of days. Only one big (and presumably old one) had the decency (?????) to die in my garage (yukkkkkkkkkk!!!!)


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RE: Ground Squirrels

Randy - you cut a hole in the middle and leave the two ends open? Then tape over the hole in the middle AFTER you put in the poison? You talking about a small (1/2 inch) or larger hole? I might try this one too. No squirrels in my trap as of yet, but only had it out one night.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

srb - to answer your questions.

You cut a hole in the middle and leave the two ends open?
Yes

Then tape over the hole in the middle AFTER you put in the poison?
Yes - to keep the rain out.

You talking about a small (1/2 inch) or larger hole?
I think I used a 1' drill bit.

Note: The active ingredient in rat poison is warfarin. Action is not rapid, usually about a week is required before a marked reduction in the rodent population is effected.

Randy

Here is a link that might be useful: Warfarin Info


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RE: Ground Squirrels

I doubt that it matters if you are thinking of poison, but my understanding of warfarin is that it causes them to slowly bleed/hemmorage to death internally. I just couldn't bring myself to cause anything a slow (you say a week) agonizing death like that. Sorry but there is a difference between killing and slow torture. Guess this just isn't the post for me; I can't agree on killing something because it is making holes or tunnels in your lawn. I do hope you truly enjoy your beautiful pristine lawn when everything else is dead.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

Nancy, it's not just holes in lawns; it is the same type of damage caused by rats and other vermin. Cracked concrete, foundation problems, holes in homes, disease. You might want to live with that, but many of us don't want to risk our homes or health to such financial and health dangers.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

Victory! Got my first ground squirrel today. He has been transported to another place. And Nancy, no poisons were necessary, so maybe you'll feel better about it. It took me a couple of days to figure out the technique. I previously had a couple of instances where the cracker was moved, but the trap wasn't tripped. Then I had a trip but the animal wasn't in there. I finally figured out how to set the trip mechanism properly and so the animals can't get out. I'll keep going as long as I can get them and hopefully will get them all eventually.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

Jason, I was almost afraid to read the latest post on this, but glad that I did. Those live traps are tricky to figure out at first, but they really do work well and you don't have to worry about poisons in your environment. Thanks. I guess I have a little different view of these little guys since I live in the woods and they are just part of the critters that I share my life with. I haven't had the problems structurally that you have and since I have house dogs and cats, guess they steer clear of the inside. So don't have the health concerns either. Glad you were successful with the trap.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

Well, I've gotten three so far. Slow but sure success.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

Well, about 5 ground squirrels later, and about 3 or so weeks since I've caught any or seen a trace of holes in the yard, I think maybe they are gone. The havahart traps are a god send. Thanks Jason for the tips. You saved me a lot of frustration and money. My brother in law is now using these traps.....and with success. These are great. You see the results too. There's no doubt when you have one in your trap that he won't be back in your yard.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

5? I think we caught a total of maybe 40. They are there my friend, with their beady, evil little ground squirrel eyes, just watching...and waiting...


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RE: Ground Squirrels

I'm watching for them. The main holes that they used haven't been disturbed for a while. Maybe they're just playing with me.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

Those little traps work great. Had them here till our local police saw them. Said trapping was illegal. They would have to confiscate the taps if they saw them again. Can't shoot them either. Illegal discharge of a weapon. EPA would probably show up if I used the chemicals. Guess you can ship all your chipmunks here where they'll be safe.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

Just found a hole in my lawn...can't talk much, or they'll "hear" us...must get dog and I camo'ed up for ground assault...more later.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

A quick way to get rid of ground squirrels and rats is to put a stick of spearmint gum down the hole. just unwrap the gum (don't touch it) and drop it in. They love the taste, so they chew it up and the gum clogs up their digestive tract. They quickly stop eating and starve. Works pretty well. And no poisons to kill the neighbors pets.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

Found about a dozen "new-ish" holes today while mowing. I put a couple Cheez-its outside each one to see if they're being used--ran out of WalMart animal crackers. Dog seems to think several are being lived in, but the weather's bad enough (hot, humid, windy, with strom coming in), that none will come out and face us. Looks like I'll have to get the hav-a-heart's out once again.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

We have cats that do all our dirty work for us. Not only do we not have ground squirrels, we don't have rats, mice, moles or very active garden snakes either. No poisons, no constant vigilance, just let the cats out for a little while and they do their job. As a bonus, we get nice warm purring cats to warm our feet at night and play with little bell balls in the living room. Local animal shelters have many wonderful cats that could use a good home and ground squirrels to chase. Occasionally you might have to pick up some animal parts now and then or a dead rat in the yard, but it's a fair trade-off.

Diana


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RE: Ground Squirrels

The neighbor's cats prowl around all the time. I know they're after those little suckers, but most seem to elude the cats too. Doesn't take them long to find a hole and zip down into it. Who knows where they come out.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

Forget the cat ,do what I did ,get a rat trap, but make sure you watch it every minute,I have chipmunks,red & gray squirrels,they raise havoc with my birdfeeders,I even put a cup of bird food out & opened a bottle o red pepper,poured it all over the seed & then watched them eat the whole thing ,so much for red pepper,& they are so tame you can't scare them.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

Well, one of the old holes just got opened up so I got out the Havaharts. Got one already. They're back.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

Ground squirrels could probably be successfully used in any recipe calling for ground beef.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

SRB, the reason you're seeing them again is that they are actually devil-spawn. More of them have just crawled up from down there.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

I believe it. They just give you a little time to think they're gone, then they send up more. They're probably storing up food for winter now.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

Hi all: In some states they're protected and can be fined. Had the little guys at the other house they did no damage. So quick they're a blur when startled. Rodents teeth keep growing they need to gnaw on something to wear them down. Contact your state wildlife agency for help


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RE: Ground Squirrels

Lots of holes, again, and all of a sudden. Now that the weather is getting colder, the little devils are trying to "fatten" up. I believe that they actually hibernate, so they're getting ready for their long sleep. Too bad it's not a really, really, really long sleep!


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RE: Ground Squirrels

Same here. They're back in force. They're storing acorns for the winter. I'm getting about one a day now. I thought they were gone, but I guess I'm not that lucky. What time of year do these little suckers breed?


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Raccoons

The raccoons are after them now. Yesterday morning there was mud and tracks all over my blacktop driveway. They were racoon tracks and in one spot you could see where he had gone round and round. Then there was the carcass of a ground squirrel laying there and guts all over the place. I could see where he was digging where the ground squirrels had been active. I cleaned it up and this morning there were raccoon tracks again. Don't really like my yard getting torn up, but if they get the ground squirrels more power to them.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

SRB, they don't breed, they spawn. I suppose I could go out and find the actual germination and mating period on the Internet somewhere, but why bother? They just come back, again, and again, like a bad horror movie sequel. I'm glad to hear that you've got some soldiers on your side now. I'd be a little worried about my dog running into them, but if that's not a concern, more power to you.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

They're back in force gathering nuts for the winter. I'm catching one every time I put out the trap. They're fat suckers too.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

There are some plants which give off a milky substance through their root systems which deters these critters. The one that we used is called gopher purge. We ordered the seeds from a mail order cataloge (can't remember which one)and planted them in the spring. It definitely did the job of keeping them out of our yard. These plants will also reseed for the next year and they are easy to transplant.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

jason, you've had me laughing so much that my visiting parents think i have gone insane!
try a search for fox urine on the internet. i think they may have advise for you.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

Looks like the activity has quit. Nothing seen and nothing in the traps for many days. Are they hibernating or can I be so bold as to think maybe I've got them all again. It's been below freezing a couple of times here in Central IL. They're probably all just off having many babies in preparation for next season.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

Sillylady, you and I have to party sometime. You bring the fox whatever, and I'll bring some steaks and a Grill. We'll invite SRB for good conversation.

SRB is probably correct; they're off hibernating, storing up fat for another summer of midnight incantations and celebrations. I, too, have many holes, and yet no activity. The cats in the neighborhood, like suspicious cops, cruise through every once in a while looking for mice and rabbits, small deer and stray calves (I did tell you they were big cats, didn't I?).

I'll do a little research and post back some "ground squirrel" information. I mean, the greatest university in the country is next door and I didn't even think to call them. Duh. I'll call the Michigan State University extension office and see what they say.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

Well, where do you want me to start???? The buggers moved into our garage/shed and decided that the darn thing wasn't big enough, and needed a skylight they tore a hole darn near 7 inches wide in the roof. Well, they threw down the gauntlet. I went nuts...literally. I used the poison...and when I phoned the manufacturers to ask how much it takes to bring one down they said about 2 packets...baloney!!!unless they are especially tough here. It took the whole box before one decided to die. I'm not finished yet...we were putting an addition on the house, and the bugger moved in between the floors...does this sound like caddyshack....it should- I was the person who went slightly tilted. I made several peanut butter pellet sandwiches, and then started setting the humane traps. I rented one from Rentall...get the insurance. I didn't. Yup someone stole the trap! Who the heck steals a trap out of your backyard???? Only where I live. I went berserk. Needless to say when people suggest that they are soooo cute...you don't want to ask me my opinion. The humane traps can be found at most hardware stores or on line at Lee Valley Tools.
Good luck and think like a squirrel.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

jason, i really think you could sell your experience to readers digest. and as for fox urine, i'm serious. its reported to repel squirrels - i've yet to try it but i am trying to evict a family of squirrels from my attic and after bug fogging them i will try the powdered urine. (no, i will not run around catherizing foxes to obtain it - i will leave that manuever to someone else, i only catherize humans)


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RE: Ground Squirrels

SillyLady, you are indeed, perhaps the most interesting person I've met. You must have a lot of fun on a friday night. As for me, Dog and I went out last night and did a survey. There are a lot of holes, but we've seen no actual sign (e.g., torn up grass, trees eaten, small beer bottles, etc.), of them. I assume that they are beginning to get ready to hibernate, so they can come back in full force the next spring. Please let me know if you think the U.S. Marines need a challenge; I believe that for the first time ever I may have found them a worthy opponent.

Oh, and by the way, I did go out and look up, on the website of the greatest university in the entire country (and yes, everyone may slightly bow their heads now in deference), information on ground squirrels and their control. However, they obviously have not run into the super-intelligent, vastly aggresive, and indeed, even truly biblically-evil rodents that we have. However, for your edification, here is the website of that inforamation:

http://www.msue.msu.edu/msue/imp/modwl/11209803.html

I also have attempted, in my haste, to post it below:

Here is a link that might be useful: Devil-spawn ground squirrel research:


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RE: Ground Squirrels

bad news in the battle against the squirrels. squirrels two, sillylady zero. i fogged the attic, came back four hours later. no sounds in the attic. plugged the favorite entry spot. two days later found that the squirrels had recovered from their psychedelic experience and staggered to the area hungry enough to knaw their way out through the area near the previous damage. i figure they went to get their hells angels buddies to come back and see what a trip the attic experience was. i sealed over both areas to find that less than twentyfour hours later, they ate and scratched their way through the same area again! now i have decided that i could probably seal over their entry by using metal lathe over the whole section that is damaged. the little sneaks don't always let me know when they are in the attic and i don't want to trap them there so they will be forced to eat their way out. (fox urine hasn't impressed them so far - i think it might be the equivalent to incenses used to mask the other odors of the chemical party i just threw for them)


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RE: Ground Squirrels

i talked with the wildlife division today and they will loan me traps (they feel this is the only chance i have to get rid of the demons). they also recommended something called tanglefoot that i should spray where they stand to enter the attic - its sticky and supposedly will hate it. they offered to help me figure out how to build the baffle for my electrical conduit also.so i guess its two weeks of "frontier woman", trapping the critters and relocating them to someone elses area (sorry but this is war)


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RE: Ground Squirrels

he-he-he....guess you know where I and SRB have been dropping off all of ours, don't you? Plus we put a hex on your house...


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RE: Ground Squirrels

jason, you want to give me the addresses so i can return the favor for you and SRB? my squirrels are the regular tree kind but i'd still be glad to share. does anyone have suggestions for building the baffle around the electrical conduit attached to the house?


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RE: Ground Squirrels

Okay, so I'm back to post again. The ground squirrels seem to be gone. The cats, once again, have done their job. However, now that they are gone, small, mole-like creatures called "voles" (a member of the weasel family, I'm told, that look like moles but don't burrow), have moved in. Dog and I were checking all our walnut trees, and found quite a few holes. She pulled one out, and that's when I realized that the damage left over from the squirrels had basically invited in these new occupants. Don't quite know what to expect in the future as far as their impact goes, but I can only hope the cats in the area do their jobs.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

don't bother with trying the fox urine. so far it has not deterred the beasts.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

Just loaned out the traps to a friend who lives up the road...seems he's got ground squirrels living in his attic. I'll have to ask the wife where she's been dumping the little buggers, or just ask my friend if he catches any blaze orange ones!


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RE: Ground Squirrels

Just make sure he doesn't dump them back in your direction.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

The pet store in town sells the critters for $150 dollars each. Supposedly the owner thinks they make good pets! You could really be making some money, here. Who's for retiring early? LOL


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RE: Ground Squirrels

You're kidding, right Claire? I can't imagine inviting one of these little devils into my house. They're like the Taliban...they seem to be docile and all of a sudden; BOOM. They escape and cause destruction. I must be honest and say that I'm not one for small, indoor rodents as pets (aka, gerbils, hamsters, mice)...but ground squirrels are the Arnold Schwrazznegar (sorry about the spelling), of rodents; strong, nasty, mean, perhaps smart...plus don't forget the "evil" connection. One of these gets loose in your house and you might as well move...

Oh well. Anything to make a buck I guess. Hey...how much do you think the pet store owner "buys" these things for? I'm thinking perhaps SRB and I could form a partnership, you see, and go from there....


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RE: Ground Squirrels

Jason, I'm totally not kidding! My hubby and I went to the store just to see the thing. His boss told him she was buying one for her daughter. That was a few months ago--maybe I should ask about the status of their house? :-) I asked the pet store lady where they got it, and she said "somewhere in South Dakota." Ha ha, they are everywhere up there! I laughed when she said they were very social animals...ya think? They demonstrate exponential growth so well.... So, I told her my hubby was offered money to shoot them when we lived in Wyoming! She was not pleased and we got the evil eye. Maybe they are the new gourmet hamsters?


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RE: Ground Squirrels

"Gourmet" hamsters. I'm rolling on the floor over that one. To think that some of us have so much trouble getting rid of these things...while others are paying top dollar for them. Ah well...just goes to show you how different things are across our country.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

No way, I spent more than $150 getting rid of them when I could have been making money. I had the same drama as Jason this year. Tried filling their holes with all sorts of nasty things and nothing worked. They were digging around the foundation of the house. I would push the dirt back in the hole and stomp it shut, the next day they would have it dug out again. Once when I was trying to chase one down he ran UNDER the vinyl siding on the house, that REALLY made me mad. Finally caught them with the Hav-A-Hart trap, just kept putting the trap in the same place every day, and every evening it would have one or two in it. There is a great sense of accomplishment once you finally defeat these determined, spiteful creatures!!


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RE: Ground Squirrels

my daughter had a squirrel get into her condo through the fireplace chimney (condo association hadn't replaced the missing screen cap thing), while she was on vacation. she came back to squirrel pee on furniture, bent mini blinds, paintings hanging crooked. the squirrel made it into the bathroom and managed to get himself shut in, knocked over the fabric softener which leaked all over the floor, tried to scale her bathroom hanging on the door hook, ate or tore a hole in her carpet by the door. then the beast curled up in the trashcan and was docile? drunk on fabric softener? dehyrated or something because her husband was able to walk in and slap something over the trash can and run him outside. glad she got rid of hers because i still have them in the attic!


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RE: Ground Squirrels

Well, I went back to the pet store today to buy my Golden Retriever a new toy and the little guy was gone! So, I asked the owner if she sold it and she said they had to get rid of it--as in let it go. I wonder if the ground squirrel activists had a fit? Strange. Oh, well as long as they didn't let it go where I live... But not good news for all of you who were going to retire early on selling the gourmet hamsters!


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RE: Ground Squirrels

Lots of fun reading all that. One suggestion for eradication of the ground dwelling type. If you are in agricultural area, visit your local farm supply and ask about 'ammonia guns'. The fertilizer supply outfits sometimes have them. Basically it is a tank, hose and nozzle. Insert nozzle in hole and give a squirt. Ammonia basically stops breathing with the first gasp (been there done that with a leaking tank)and gives them no time to escape. It also penetrates deeply into the burrows. You may have to pay the company to apply it tho.

Harry K


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RE: Ground Squirrels

Well, like all interesting things in life...they appear to be back. Fortunately they're making great inroads on my neighbor's lawn, but I still have my share. Oh well...time to get the traps out again I guess...


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RE: Ground Squirrels

To: Jason, Randy, srb, Liz, Silly Lady, et al

I have been reading this site, off and on , for several weeks now, when I'm not in the "War Zone", the chipmunk(groud squirrel) war zone that is. I have decided that I want to play if you will let me. I'm well qualified, I have about 15 years experience fighting the little "buggers" and that includes gray squirrels as well. I should know better by now but dumb and determination drives me on. I have tried all the "home remedies" and some that I've not even seen posted here.
Let me say that I don't need to hear from any of the "chipmunk huggers" or "they are Gods cretures and they were here first" crowd. As far as I can tell the "Good Book" that I read says God created Adam and Eve and the snake was next, which was their undoing. Chipmunks must have been in there somwhere shortly thereafter.
The area where I live is a well cared for neighborhood with nice homes and well cared for lawns. I can remember when the sub-divisions were developed, the area was a 2,000 acre cotton farm along the Tennessee River Delta, and there was not a tree, bush, weed or chipmunk within human sight. SO, I KNOW I was HERE first.
That said, let me say that I enjoy reading all of your commentaries, they are a welcome diversion for this old(77 year old)"warrior" after a hard day in the "combat zone", as it is refered to in our house.
We all know or should know by now there will be no "victory" over this dastardly foe. "He" is definately Devil Spawn" as someone has so aptly named them.
I have many more "chippie" stories but let me lay one small one on you (more later maybe), before I sign off.
Yesterday was a very hot day, in the high 80's. I have a 10x10 metal storage bulding for garden tools , etc. on my patio(concrete slab). The door was slightly ajar and I spied one of the litte devils slipping up to check out the contents. I waited until he was well inside and did my "sneakey Indian manuver" and slid the door closed. There is no way out, there is nothing edible and the building is all metal, the temperature is 87 outside, I'd guess at least 97 inside. Am I painting a picture? I'll check him tomorrow, maybe. Will that be soon enough for you "chipmunk lovers"?
I'll stop for now, got to make a final sweep of the area, after which I'm headed for Schlotzsky's for my allowable once per week indulgence. Hope to hear from some of you. "Keep Cementing Those Holes and Replacing Those Garden Hoses!!!" LYMAN


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RE: Ground Squirrels

To add to my previous posting. I would suggest for those who have any doubt of the seriouness of ground squirell/chipmunk control, check out Jason's suggestion to visit www.bugspray.com for some enlightenment. In the end it is really no laughing matter although it helps if you laugh to keep from crying and lets keep the humor in it.
L.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

It is spring in Illinois and they are here in full force. I thought I had gotten rid of them last year. I had trapped 20 or so and their activity had died out. But just in the past two weeks I have been trapping about one per day with the "hav-a-hart" traps. I've gotten around 7 or 8 so far and moved them to a different place. They always go right back to the exact same spot by my garage, as well as a couple of other spots.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

Well, I haven't had near the problem I have in years' past. This year, the devil spawn seemed to have moved to "greener", or should I say, more hellish pastures to perpetrate their crimes. However, this is the year that I'm painting my house. Now, I'll admit that I certainly have not spent as much time in upkeep on my home as I should have, but now that I've gotten the ladder out, here's what I've found the little buggers have done:

So far, on one entire end, they've nibbled off the corners of the gable end boards...that is, all the angled cuts are "frayed" off, down to furry wood. Not a huge diaster...but it can't be repainted, and will direct water into the house. The wood in these areas is actually about 1/2 as thick as it should be, and in a couple places, it goes all the way through to the housewrap...so all of this end get's replaced. And of course, #1 Clear cedar isn't cheap. I assume they were leaning over the roof edge to eat it.

I've also found several of the small, round vents, which have fine little screens to keep bugs out, to be completely "sans" screens, and the holes are completely chewed around. That means the little you-know-what's got in. And if there anything like regular squirrels, they probably found the rafter ends to be quite dry and tasty...not to mention the messes they probably left behind. And of course, if I reach into any of these holes and pull, I come out with big wads of the foam insulation in little tiny pieces. Oh boy. Of course, the only way to tell how bad the damage is is to take that part of the roof apart.

So even though I don't appear to be having a problem with them this year (I've only seen one)...which of course might just mean that they're getting smarter, the damage is considerable. With #1 cedar being about $1.25 a linear foot, it'll cost over 1k just to get the raw materials to fix the gable end, not to mention the work, paint, etc. I don't even want to think about what I'm going to find in the cathedral ceiling area.

Yeah....cute and furry my you-know-what!


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RE: Ground Squirrels

Ever caught a bird in your hav-a-hart trap? I got a bird in mine.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

We have one/ some ground squirrels. A few weeks ago they dug a hole through our gravel driveway to under the slab of the garage. We had the driveway blacktoped about 2 weeks ago. Today I go out to find a hole in my new driveway. They have also been digging in my wifes potted plants?! I'm looking at getting some traps. Give you all an update.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

If you got one, you probably got a lot MORE than one. The hav-a-hart's work good. I caught a bunch (more than 10) early in the season, now they seem to be gone. I caught a bunch last year until I wasn't catching anymore, but they came back this year. You probably have to start all over every year. The little b**tards are destructive.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

I have, for the most part, adopted a "turn a blind eye" attitude toward my chipmunks. The cat finds them amusing but he, unfortunately, is not serious, and I ignore the holes since our yard is basically wooded in the back. What I CANNOT ignore, however, is my terriers' burning desire to devour these creatures. The holes by the chipmunks are fine; the craters under the patio by dogs going after the chipmunks is quickly becoming a hazard to my screen porch. Time for drastic measures!


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RE: Ground Squirrels

We have caught 4 so far. We hit an impasse, did not catch any for a few days, but my wife said she saw one. We tried new bait (pecans), they seemed to like these although they got the pecan without setting off the trap. Next day i duct taped 2 pecans to the lever. Later my wife saw the tape with a pecan stuffed in the hole in our driveway! Last night we super glued the pecans to the trap. also spun the trap around, it seems to trigger from one side better than the other. Will we outwit these fiendish little critters. Stay tuned same bat channel, same bat time.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

I cannot believe they got it out, tape and all! Wow!


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RE: Ground Squirrels

We have now caught 9, they even got the pecans loose that were super glued. determined little creatures. I blocked all the holes I know of execept where the stoop goes to the side garage door. It has a small crack that I think they were going into. I will seal this with spray foam temporarily until I know they are gone!!


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RE: Ground Squirrels

Our count is now 10 at least the three holes that I blocked have not shown signs of life. I don't know if they are going behind the stoop or if they are just visiting from some neighbors house! Once we believe they are all gone I'm going to fill the holes as best I can and then use gravel over the area around my house. Hopefully they will find easier targets elsewhere!


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RE: Ground Squirrels

Summer is now waning and we have "blazing" temperatures. I have not seen any chipmunks in almost 2 months and very few gray squirells. I am not delusional however, they'll return.I did catch 20 or so chimunks this summer and will not have to bother with them anymore. I thought I was pretty well "educated" to the ways of these pest but now know why they are scarce. Its lack of food and water supply. A Redtailed hawk that nested and spent the summer in a grove of pines across the street didn't hurt the elemination process either. Someone asked if any one had ever caught birds. Yes several as well as rats and rabbits. It would have been amusing had it not been so aggravating. My friends who don't have the problem get a laugh from it. But I tell them, "just wait, they'll get to your house eventually." Now I await the winter "assult".


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RE: Ground Squirrels

The final count is 11. I patched the driveway, dug out next to the stoop filled that hole with pea gravel & covered with marble chips. I hope our little Pests have not enjoy our cedar siding/house.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

They're back!!!! I came out to find they dug a new hole through our new blacktopped driveway. I caught 1 since and found a new hole by the stoop at the back of the garage. Something has escaped with three pecans that were super glued to the trap! I have an interesting idea. I been concerned that they will weaken and damage the slab in my garage, foyer & office. Since they seem to dig very shallow holes to get under the foundation, what would happen if you found thin metal plates and hammered or buried them along the foundation. Essentially making them dig deeper or give up?!


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RE: Ground Squirrels

Thanks to Jason_MI for alerting me to this thread. I have a terrible problem w serious damage from chipmunks. My question is, what are "ground squirrels"? That is not a term I have ever heard before in NY/New England. Here, squirrels are gray critters w fuzzy tails that live mostly in trees. Have never had damage from them. Chipmunks are reddish, smaller, cute and have invaded my car's mechanical systems (nice place to nest) and undermining my house's foundation. This is a new one in 25 yrs here. Global warming?


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RE: Ground Squirrels

My God, I'm glad to see I'm not the only one with this problem!

They have burrowed all along the front foundation wall of my house, and I'm waiting for the basement wall to fall in! They have also set up housekeeping under the brick pediments that hold up my front steps, causing said brick structures to sag badly (I've already "rebuilt" them -- as best as possible -- once) and I'm waiting for my front steps to fall down! The steps have already moved away from the front of the house by over an inch, giving the destructo's just one more "entryway."

I have 75 pounds of dog, who's only managed to eliminate one of the little destructo-demons. And THAT by digging a hole large enough to install a swimming pool!

This past summer, I stuffed a garden hose down their largest run, and ended up flooding my basement! Then I bought a shopping cart full of moth-balls and filled all of their tunnels as best I could.

And they still have the nerve to sit on my front steps and laugh!!


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RE: Ground Squirrels

For regular squirrels that are getting into the attic, apparently copper wool stuffed into the holes where they get in will stop them. It hurts their teeth when they try to chew through it.

see www.bugspray.com


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RE: Ground Squirrels

With the trap we have caught 19 so far, my wife has seen more usually running around in our backyard. I think we may have neighbors that have nests under their houses. How do you get rid of them then? We patched the second hole in our driveway, I also poured pea gravel aound the area the used to enter. I have not seen any new holes.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

Jason should write a book, I've sat here for an hour reading all of this and laughing, Thank you.

Visions of all these lil chipmunks all pumped up with jack hammers strapped over their shoulder ready for battle against the ground. Chip and Dale would be scared of your Devil Spawns.

I can't ever remember being overrun by these guys, havent even seen one in 5 years if not longer, I don't have trouble with rodents of any type, we have a Chow, Lab, Siamese, Husky, and Persian, that might intimidate rodents just a bit, I see 1 or 2 out in the trees somedays but they have moved their nests to neighbors without pets even though our are house pets because they are more like our kids.
I have no solutions but as Silly lady posted the Wildlife division loaned her some traps, your Local Animal shelter may do this as well, I know the one I worked at you signed up for them, and they showed you how to use them.
I wouldn't be surprised if some asked for a deposit for return of trap but that is still inexpensive.

Don't stop writing Jason either that or send us all a copy of your first book, "How To get rid of Devil Spawns"
Or go into business "Adopt a Gourmet Devil Spawn Today"

I'm know I'm going to dream of armies of lil chipmunks running for their lives tonight

You can run but cant hide doesn't seem to fit these Devil Spawns ) Good Luck to all on your warfares


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RE: Ground Squirrels

Does anyone have proof the spearmint gum works?


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RE: Ground Squirrels

I'm laughing so hard. Thanks ntdamama for resurrecting this 4 year old thread. Too funny! The stories are so vivid I can picture each of you out there on rodent patrol. We used to fear for my grandma's life as she and her shovel would be out on gopher patrol in her front yard at 3 and 4 a.m. daily - scary!

I had never heard of ground squirrels and tunnels - amazing. My only experience with rodents was solved with those cans of expanding foam. The builder left a huge hole in the brick where the ac entered the house. Imagine my surprise when black mold started growing on an interior wall where no water pipes could be found. Critters had entered my walls and chewed off the insulation on the ac pipes and the resulting moisture caused quite a bit of damage - both down and upstairs. The entire wall had to be ripped out, lines reinsulated and the wall rebuilt of course. My ac man filled that hole with the foam and after 5 years, it is still fully intact. Outside weather conditions haven't affected that foam at all.

I, too, am waiting on the new movie, How to Get rid of Devil Spawns. This thread is just too darned funny. Nice way to start my day :)


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RE: Ground Squirrels

Well, I hit this page looking for hope and a quick fix. The little suckers have eaten every plant Ive put out on my deck they seem to have a special fondness for tomato plants. Ive re-planted six times now. Dont even want to think about the little footsteps Im hearing in the attic! My nightly ritual involves trying to find new and exotic ways to hide my plants. Have to sign off now. Im headed out to buy two big cats, some camouflage, combat boots, Wrigleys gum, ammonia hoses, and have a hart traps. Wish me luck


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RE: Ground Squirrels

Plants too? Wow. I never realized how bad some of the squirrels are. I guess my squirrels are simple tree squirrels and they love me. I feed them daily. They have a constant supply of water - too cute, they hang over the edge of the pool and drink away.

Definitely wishing you the best of luck!

.... making note to self, "lock my doors, turn off the lights and hide out - the hunt is on!"


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RE: Ground Squirrels

Before we moved I had only ever seen 2 squirrels come into my yard and I would feed them. Even named them Stanley and Stella. I lived in the country!! Now we've moved closer to a town and I am seeing squirrels all over the place. I must confess they are cute but, digging in my flowers beds isn't gonna fly! Not gonna wait till they invade my house or garage structure. So, it's war. Put out some of the gum and it's gone of course. My hope is that it works or they like it so much they're tellin all their friends,"Hey the new lady's puttin out sweets, come on I'll take you there!" Also gonna try humane traps.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

I have an exterminator coming over today because a squirrel (and possibly babies too) are living in my attic. They/it have gotten in through the triangular roof vent in the rear of my house. They jump on my neighbor's shed, then onto the neighbor's peach tree then to my roof and then they slide down the antenna to the vent.

I hate squirrels now. My cat has been going crazy hissing and meowing at the attic door in my son's closet.

This is just great :( The realtor is taking pictures of my house today while Rocky the Squirrel is upstairs partying. Hopefully the exterminator will get rid of this problem before I get a buyer for my house.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

Someone with a hav-a-heart trap and no heart should experiment with the spearmint gum, I would, but we only have the red squirrels here and they infiltrate the attic but we never catch them live, 3 have been killed with rat traps and three with a 6 foot long stick.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

I read this about a month ago and got a good laugh. I occasionally notice a ground squirrel in yard. I don't mind them unless they are causing some noticable damage. I was digging in the yard to build a new retaining wall and came across a ground squirrel complex. Multiple tunnels and some surprisingly big chambers. Upon taking a break from my work I noticed a GS return to the area to survey the damage. She dissapeared in a tunnel and reappeared carrying a pup and headed towards a hole in the neighbors yard. She made a second trip for another pup. I seen her occassionaly over the next month visiting a hole behind my property. Then I noticed the two babies were now juvenilles and starting to explore outside the hole. Then I started wondering what would happen when they grew up and had babies. They might decide the neighbors yard isnt big enough and expand into mine. But then a couple of nights ago a neighborhood cat took an extreme interest in the hole behind my property where I often saw the juveniles. Within a half an hour of staking out the hole he managed to catch one of the juveniles, much to my DW dismay. He ran off with it and DW decided she wouldn't let the cat get the second one. With an hour she noticed the cat was back and went to shoo it away, but it was too late he already caught number 2. I'm happier now we are back to one GS, which lives in the neighbors yard and occasionaly visits are bird feeder. These are the bigger 13 banded ground squirrels and I haven't seen the cats catch an adult yet. But they seem to be very effective against the youngsters. The juvenilles seem pretty dumb, I was walking threw the yard a couple of days before their demise and actually stepped on one. I didn't seem him and it was in the middle of yard. It scared the heck out of me.

So cats can be an effective control option for those of you with GS problems.

Here is a link that might be useful: ground squirrel


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RE: Ground Squirrels

How I wish!

I've two 1 yearish old cats sleeping in the Texas heat below a
sago palm while the four squirrels under the feeder practically tap dance on their heads.

Occasionally Fred will chase one up a tree, but only if he thinks I am watching. Like Tom in the cartoons chasing Jerry when the home owner was about.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

Boy am I glad I found this thread! I live in the high desert and have always had ground squirrels on my property. This year they are worse than ever! They have undermined my shed that is on a concrete slab. The other day one came running out from inside my car engine. Luckily so far they haven't chewed any wires or caused any damage to my car.

I have several spots on my property where they have built their cities. One is in a wood pile where they have made mounds of dirts that are just incredible! I put my garden hose in their holes trying to flush them out, with my dogs standing near by waiting...but it was to no avail. I must have pumped 50 gallons of water into the ground. I'm going to hate to see my water bill!

I have two dogs and 1 cat, they're not able to catch them.

They're eating the bark on my fruit trees and have started digging their holes around the trunks of my trees.

I will now try the hav-a-heart traps mentioned here. Although, that will be difficult to relocate them with my work schedule.

Anyway, just wanted to share my stories and keep this thread alive...nice to know I'm not the only one dealing with the devil spawn!


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RE: Ground Squirrels

Just a note: please don't use poison when getting rid of animals. It's a horrible and excruciating way to die.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

You want horrible? My neighbors brother fills a bucket half way with water and then loads it up with bird and sunflower seeds. He has a plank of wood leading up to the bucket. The GS run up the plank like they're boarding a cruise ship, go to get the seeds, fall in and drown. He's drowned over thirty this summer alone. I hate the little jerks but I can't bring myself to do this.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

Now that I am thoroughly educated on the ways of the critters, I am throwing in the towel and calling out the professionals. I haven't Job's patience, Jason's jocularity nor a dog with a hunting instinct.

I may be throwing in the towel, but I am no so foolish as to toss out the green -- at least not again. I've already done that in the case of a roofer and a floor guy. Could it possibly be worth an upfront fee of $250 plus another $50 per critter caught in the traps. Here is where it gets expensive, for my critter has invaded an inaccessible dead space. That means that traps will have to be outside which isn't a problem in and of itself. The traps are too small to ensnare a any of the resident red foxes that we have been studying over the years. But, the squirrels are plentiful. The pros will trap squirrels, make no mistake about that. But, will they catch THE squirrel?

This project could easily wind up sending the pest guys kids to University of Chicago for a year or two. Good for him, but disasterous for me. I am already on the ropes financially as a result of my "champagne taste" on a "beer budget."

Does this fee arrangement strike anyone else as odd, or am I just marching to a different drum beat?


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RE: Ground Squirrels

Some of the control methods for ground squirrels mentioned here are extremely cruel. I do not see them as pests, because they are among my favorite of animals. People think they have something to protect by exterminating these innocent creatures that were here first.

--Andrew

Here is a link that might be useful: Squirrel Awareness


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RE: Ground Squirrels

I just shoot 'em. Usually with the .22, but every now and then I get one with the AK-47.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

One thing that seems to work for me is a 5 gallon propane tank with a weed burner. Dig the opening of the hole out fill with propane (not to much) and ignite.If the underground blast doesn't get then the gas will. Also a road flare ( 30 min.kind )down a hole when sealed will irritate their lungs and send them packing.So don't wave the white flag just yet!Good luck to all on the battlefield !!


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RE: Ground Squirrels

My jack russell would take care of your problem...shed love it...


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RE: Ground Squirrels

I had a problem with rats a number of years ago eating the electrical wires, (somehow they manages to avoid getting shocked) phone wires and even the PVC plumbing under the house. Bad enough when they ate the water lines, but the SEWAGE lines? Gross! The cost of repairs was in the upper hundreds and growing daily. Anyhow, what's that got to do with this thread? My cure should work with ground squirrels as well.

I tried the traps with little or no success, and they ate the poison like it was candy and everything else I tried did nothing. The cure that finally worked was not only cheep but effective, though a bit cruel it worked and saved me thousands more in house repairs.

I got a bag of cement mix (no gravel and such, just the powder) from Home Depot. Mixed that 50/50 with flower and put it in a bowel. They loved the flower and ate the mix till they were full. I also placed a bowl of water next to the flower mix. After such a tasty but dry meal they would be thirsty and need a drink. The end result is obvious.

I'm not recommending this as a first assault, preferring traps instead, but if major damage is being done to my house, all best are off.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

That's disgusting... just keep your area very clean and you won't have rats or anything else.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

You know, I can't laugh. When we bought our home it had been empty for about a year. We spent some time on renovations and cleaning, then moved in. First night we hear rustling downstairs shortly after all tucked in, so I played possum while hubby toddles down to check things, thinking it's just the cat checking around. Pretty soon, husband reappears ranting as he puts on shoes that he can't find the flashlight and crowbar. !!? More playing possum. Eventually I hear swearing and bangs. Hubby screaming like a girlie and running. I start to think perhaps it might be good if I check on things, when it gets quiet. Husband reappears and mumbles something about couldn't get it to leave but I cornered it.

Wake up in am and go downstairs to cook breakfast and WHOA!! Who moved camels into the office, cuz it smells like a herd of them live there.

Turns out my playing possum was more apt than I knew, hubby had managed to wedge plywood around a footed cabinet such that a fat possum is held under there. Naturally it's the city animal control guy's day off. After we beg to borrow their wire thing to catch it around the neck and drag it off, they promise to send someone when they have time. Eventually a very young police officer arrives with it, shortly followed by his buds. We'd tried running a nylon rope through a length of pvc pipe, but were dissuaded by the very nasty looking teeth the critter so liberally displayed whenever we tried to nab him.

The two senior officers proceed to make a lot of jokes like "Oh, just reach in there and grab him" while the poor low guy on the totem poll works. Eventually he nabs it and drags it to the front yard, whereupon...OHOH!

What do we do with it? The older officers laugh and suggest the new guy just put it in his back seat and drive it to the country. After thinking over this unhelpful advice, hubby appears with cat carrier, and we toss it in there, and carrier in back of our truck, and haul him out to the city dump some miles hither. On arrival hubby put the carrier on the ground, flings open the door and somehow manages to land in the bed of the truck in one move.

Nothing happens.

Eventually hubby resorted to shaking the critter out of the box, whereupon he toddles off toward the dump presumably for lunch. So far no repeat entrances, but we have a rather large possum my children refer to as the "poor mama" who hangs in a tree outside one of our second story windows and looks at us ever few days.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

Warning - don't use any poison on your rodents if you have animals around. Your animals will catch the rodents and eat them and poison themselves.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

I can't believe my posts are still here from way back then. LOL!!!


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RE: Ground Squirrels

Jason,
I was ROFLMAO!

Good to see you again - you are missed at the other place.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

Hey, I was glad to see this post again too. Entertaining reading on a very cold 10-degree night.

littlebug5, wishing for spring but NOT wishing for GS


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RE: Ground Squirrels

I ran across this old thread while sitting on my deck listening to 20 acres' worth of ground squirrels calling out their love songs to each other. "Peep peep peep cheep cheep cheep." Disgusting little vermin.

They have turned our alfalfa field into a scene from the foxholes of WWI. You can hardly take ten steps without falling into a hole.

I gave up years ago on gassing them. Now we invite hunting parties out to sit in the top floor of our barn and shoot for hours. The first round of hunters this year got about 50; the second, around 35. And still the maddening "Peep peep peep cheep cheep cheep" goes on...on...on.

Back when I was young and optimistic, I bought a good supply of extra-large, heavy-duty gas-bombs made for killing ground squirrels. They looked like sticks of dynamite. You had to go to the next county to find them (legally). They weren't cheap, but I thought, hey, they're sure to work so what's a few bucks?

NOT!

I filled my son's red wagon with squirrel bombs, newspapers, and matches. With a shovel over my shoulder and the wagon rumbling along behind, I set off into the field.

Dig, dig, dig up a hole. Crumple up newspapers. Shove a bomb down the hole as far as possible and light it. Quickly stuff newspapers over the bomb, then backfill with dirt. See drifts of white smoke coming from other holes. See squirrels popping up and laughing.

I must've spent hundreds on those bombs. Oh, and our farmer - the guy who takes care of the alfalfa - has one of those aforementioned gassers he hauls behind a tractor. He said it didn't work at all, and it sure doesn't seem to have reduced the population. So we invited in the neighborhood hunters with their 22s. Although they're closing in on 90 so far, there are easily 100 or more still out there.

We could charge admission I suppose. For the hunters, that is. Oh, and the other day hubby and I visited a local arboretum. What did we see EVERYWHERE on the grounds? Not just lovely green grass and exhibits of flowers, bushes, and trees, but dozens of holes and trails, with tame little ground squirrels poking up their heads and practically waiting for a handout. The locals who live in the city probably think they're "cute." Calling all hunters...


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RE: Ground Squirrels

I have succesfully encouraged grey squirrels to leave my attic, trash can, etc. with a pellet gun. The only problems are disposing of the bodies, and the fact that it's illegal to shoot a pellet gun in my town. I have to snipe from inside my house!


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RE: Ground Squirrels

Loved reading this page!!! We noticed a problem with the ground squirrels as well. It all started with a few holes in the front yard and under the patio in the back yard. One day, they were even so kind to chew their way through the garage door lining and help themselves to a feast of sunflower seeds! So in return for their nice jesture, I got them a nice large rat trap. I grabbed my hot glue gun and glued a few sunflower seeds to it, since it seemed to be such a hit. I put it next to their growing hole in the ground and withing a few hours, we had him! I disposed of him, peeled off the glue and put a fresh seed on the trap and set forth to catch his partner in crime. Now we're working on number 7 of ??? (too many)...


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RE: Ground Squirrels

I have had war fare for four months on the tree squirrels living in my attached garage and building nest in the attic space above my mud room. Shot them with pointed lead pelets an dthe lead posin did not get them. Next door nighbor is a traper got a profesional neck trap NOTHING. Rat trap with apple slices seem to do OK. They have moved on for the summer but as the fall in New Hampshire approches they will be back. I am afraid if I block there entrance with copper wool they will just chew another. Any other options, I am thinking of taking the 22 with quiet short runds to get them when they get outside! But surrounded by 40 acres of old growth woods, if I shot one another will quickly take it's place.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

seal up the holes. they find a gap, then chew it wide enough to enter if it was not already. seal all gaps.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

So having read these posts I know that there is no need for me to purchase guns, bombs, or poisons as they are only temporary, and not so effective, means of eliminating the pests and may, in fact, actually increase the population as we are mearly providing them with food and entertainment.

While I typically don't believe in killing an animal unless I plan to eat it, I'm making an exception where ground squirrels come to play. Instead of HaveaHeart traps I've invested in a dozen or so large snap traps that I bait with peanut butter. Relocation of any trapped ground squirrel is to ditch on the side of the road. I maybe morbid but I like to leave their bodies where their comrads can see them and get the message, that I mean business!

The only effect my two large dogs has had is to dig even larger holes where the tunnel entrances are. I'm thinking about investing in barn cats. Do you think that a dozen cats will be enough for the first assult?

Has anyone tried relocating these pests to someplace like Afganastan?


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RE: Ground Squirrels

An 83 year old Long island man went to jail for shooting a squirrel dead with a bbgun.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

A few days ago I lost a beloved sky plant to ground squirrels and the war was on! I am now determined to stop at nothing to get rid of these pests. I have holes burrowed all along my fenceline which I keep covering with dirt and rocks ( to no avail!) and many of my plants have been destroyed in hours. I tried mothballs and that upset my neighbors, but had no impact on the little varmints. I will try the traps that were mentioned, but I am curious as to how quickly these horrible little beasts procreate? I watched a dozen of them on my back patio scrounging for bird seed knocked down from one of my bird feeders. I detest snakes, but am now looking forward to the snakes coming around so they can have a good sized meal of ground squirrels! How is a girl supposed to keep her garden looking nice when these horrible creatures have seemingly taken over the Universe?! Is there a simple solution to the ground squirrel invasion? Every time I turn my back on them they reappear and bring their friends and family!Help!


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RE: Ground Squirrels

Try rat poison with peanut butter mixed in.

All squirrels seem to love the stuff, and even lick the box clean and sometimes chew it up.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

I am with those who would commit ground squirrel homicide. This is war, and the only way to achieve complete victory is to adopt a strategy of genocide. I don't care if they are on the adjoining vacant property to my home, they die! The more miserable death, the better.

I, like so many others who have posted their war stories, have tried an array of techniques, from the human PETA approach to sitting in a chair with cup 'a Joe with my blow dart gun. These little bastards have an objective to eliminate human beings from the planet unless we get to them first.

Initially, I tried burning them out. I sprayed WD40, diesel fuel, gasoline, and an array of other ignitable fluids down their "rat" hole and ignited it with a propane torch. Very successful ploy! I didn't succeed in ridding myself of the pesky varmints, but I did accomplish a new bathroom plumbing job. My torch burned the drain pipe and filled my home with smoke. Nice touch. Should have read Jason's post first!

I've put obstacles such as rock in the holes and the squirrel CB battalion brings out their heavy equipment to push the rocks back out, or they simply use their C4 to blow another opening in the terra firma. Same with using clay-type mud or concrete. They either burrow around it, or blow it out of the way. I swear, the other day one of the battalion of ground squirrels came out of the whole with a hard hat on its head, scouting for the enemy--me.

I tried the chemical assault--like Jason--using a mixture of common garden poisons, graduating to all-out warfare with array of household chemicals I created from products under the sink and automotive chemicals from my storage cabinet. All without success, except now my gieger counter indicates that perhaps I should no longer use tap water.

Tried the "nature's blend" approach of using various types of pepper, including dog spray [couldn't find Mace]. Tried pouring a bottle of almost pure habanero sauce into a Hudson sprayer, added water and sprayed down into the entrances of all holes. Seems that all this latter approach accomplished is a request by the local ground squirrel community to ask for more tortilla chips to go with the salsa.

I use large scale "squash the bastards" rat traps and occasionally snag one of the enemy. And for you animal rights whackos, I feel damn good about contributing to the "circle of life." Crows have to eat too! All too often, the squirrel rangers are effective at snagging the treat I offer on the trap without getting caught. I will, however, continue this approach along with some others I am developing.

I am contemplating using some flexible plastic hose about 3/8-1/2 inch in diameter attached to my air compressor. I will snake the hose down into the burrow 20-30 feet in the hopes of find the den, at which point I will again attempt to neutralize the horde of savage rodents by first injecting ammonia down the tube, then chlorine bleach. If I can reach the heart of the community, I believe this biological warfare approach will gas the nasty little creeps.

The humane traps will become a component of my warfare, but I will not rest until I am able to claim that I have exterminated the entire population of ground burrowing, flower-eating, slab-destroying pests around my fort. As they say, all is fair in love and war, and baby, the war that I bring to these critters is armageddon.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

So here we are in April 2011 - almost 10 full years since the first post here. I live in Connecticut, and have just been told by our landscaping guy that the holes appearing in our front yard are from squirrels (although he didn't specify what kind of squirrel). They first started showing up at the end of last summer on our front yard by the roadway, and now this spring, several more have appeared gradually approaching the front of our house. If these are indeed the horrible creatures described in this post, can anyone tell me if there has been a definitive solution to their eradication over the last decade??


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RE: Ground Squirrels

You need to find out if they are Gray squirrels or ground squirrels.

If you scare them do the run up trees or into underground burrows?


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A glut of acorns, or a bad case of the Plague?

Did anyone notice more acorns than usual last year? We did where we live. Lots of furry little rascals burying them in the front yard. Looks like a minefield!

"Mast blooms go in cycles. in years with large acorn production, there will be a lot of very well fed squirrels, mice and other vermin. the following year there will typically be high births among these species. some of them are vectors for human diseases. there can also be subsequent bursts in the populations of the animals which prey on them.

a productive masting season may therefore be the harbinger of disease, harvests attacked by unusually large numbers of vermin, and other ecological phenomena important to human well being."

A link that might be useful:

boingboing.net/2010/09/04/a-glut-of-acorns-or.html


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RE: Ground Squirrels

Duped Ground Squirrel:

1 reasonably clean 5 gallon bucket filled 3/4 full of water

1 big bag of birdseed grade sunflower seeds (black oil type from Menards, Home Depot etc.)

1 4ft long board (like a 2x4)

Preparation:

(In the morning, on a reasonably nice day, when its not raining or too windy.)

Place bucket of water about 4 ft away from the opening of the ground squirrel hole. Let the water settle.

Place one end of the board near the squirrel hole and prop the other end of the board just barely on to the edge of the bucket of water. The board will be a ramp leading up to the top of the bucket.

gently spread a layer of the sunflower seeds on the surface of the water that is in the bucket. Keep sprinkling the seeds until the surface of the bucket is covered with a dry looking layer of seeds. Do not add too much where the squirrel can float or temporarily be supported by the seeds. Also do not fill the bucket beyond 3/4 full of water to begin with. The goal here people is to present the illusion of a whole bucket full of dry seeds to the greedy little squirrel. place about 4-5 loose seeds along the ramp.

If you move the bucket you will have wet seeds and they are little smarter than that. Once they are wet - Start over!!!!

Go do something for a while and come back later. They will smell the seeds.

If you come back and find all of the seeds wet and severely disrupted, it's likely that you have duped the unsuspecting pest. If the water isn't moving wait a bit before the removal. If you have disrupted seeds and wet spots next to the bucket, you either filled it too full of water or put too many seeds for the the little bugger to fall through effectively.

Have a reasonable place to dump the whole bucket, water seeds, nuisance, and all. You may want to bag and toss the problem into the trash.

If you already have a bucket and a board, the seeds will cost about 8 bucks. If not, the whole thing can be done for abut 12 bucks.

Do not do this overnight, or when it's rainy. You don't want other types of night feeders making a heck of a mess or an overflowed bucket (waste of money for the seeds).

It works well if you are patient, relatively neat, and detail oriented.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

This thread is hilarious! But 10 years later and what's the solution? Drown or trap?

I've got ground squirrels burrowing under my foundation. My first thought was to run a hose down the hole and fill with water, but I do remember Caddy Shack and I have a basement...

So, as with most folks I guess, I tried just moving the dirt back into the hole - yeah right, you guessed it - the next day, the hole was back.

Now, I'm at the check-the-internet stage and I came across this thread. I'm not sure I'm any more educated now than when I started, except for the knowledge that in 10 years the poison manufacturers haven't gotten it figured out yet, oh yeah, and a whole lot of laughs!

Well, I'm no good with dead animals, so I guess I'll have to try the traps. I checked Havahart and the traps are up to $40 now, but on sale for $35. We'll see how it goes.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

Amazon has the 0745 traps for $20 (and free shipping w/ Prime).

I did a lot of searching on the best trap to get since Havahart alone has no less than 4 different traps that all advertise as being for chipmunks or squirrels. I found that the 0745 is touted as being the most reliable of the traps--catching even the smartest critters that have gotten around the other models. It's just a bonus that it happens to be the least expensive of the bunch, too.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

We bought this place in March and are over-run with ground squirrel. Lots of young ones. After reading this I'm worried they might be responsible for our foundation problems. We have a trap but it has large holes so will be making a trip to HF for a smaller trap.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

For you "animal lovers" out there ... ground squirrels, rats, mice, gophers, moles, etc are PESTS (snakes are beneficial and eat some of the aforementioned). Tree squirrels live in TREES. Chipmunks don't dig holes. The best and quickest way to get rid of ground squirrels is strychnine grain. Put a couple tablespoons in the hole where other animals can't reach it. They die immediately and you'll get the thrill of finding their bodies all over the place within a couple hours. Cats belong indoors. They will kill few ground squirrels but will go for the easier prey. The Audubon Society here in Portland reports that 60% of the injured/mangled birds (some endangered) brought in for treatment are the result of house cats that some stupid irresponsible person turned out for the day to fend for themselves.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

The Univ of California "Integrated Pest Management Program" says that ground squirrels tend to be infested with dangerous diseases. They do NOT recommend relocating them. Rather, they recommend destroying them by whatever means works. See the link below.

Here is a link that might be useful: UC IPM - Pests in Gardens and Landscapes


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RE: Ground Squirrels

"The best and quickest way to get rid of ground squirrels is strychnine grain. They die immediately and you'll get the thrill of finding their bodies all over the place within a couple hours."

NOT a very responsible way to take care of this.

Owls, hawks, falcons, eagles, foxes, coyotes, wolves, badgers, etc.........even some dogs and cats will then consume these dead bodies (that you find so delightful), and will ingest the poison themselves.

You need to find a better way to deal with this.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

@Jason! Your posts have been a bright spot in an otherwise going-out-of-my-mind-trying-to-get-rid-of-squirrels kind of month.

I wish I would have found a definite answer here but it looks like using the killing traps might be the only answer. ugh. I hate to do it but it looks like I have no choice... Well, my HUSBAND has no choice, I'm not doin' it.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

When we saw the first ground squirrel in the back yard we thought it was cute and harmless. Ha! We now have an entire army of the little critters. There are holes everywhere. We have tried filling in the holes, no good, we have flooded the holes, no good. Seriously considering the bucket of water & sunflower seeds method. :(


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RE: Ground Squirrels

*sigh* After watching the little brats I just cannot bring myself to kill them (or having them killed) so I'm going to have to spend the money for some kind of fence. Ugh!


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RE: Ground Squirrels

A friend tells me she uses catnip plants as a repellant to keep these pesky critters away from the slab on which her house sits. Reading 10 years of this blog on ground squirrels clearly told me I'm not alone. Lots of good ideas, persistence seems to be the critical tactic. I trapped several ground squirrels with rat traps (Big Snap E) set out to get rats. If you are unfamiliar with them, google them. They are incredibly effective. Dont get the Victor trap look-alikes. They dont work.

I just put out the Hav A Hart traps today.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

I caught two of these pesky ground squirrels with two Hav-A-Hart traps yesterday using a couple of walnuts stuck on peanut butter smeared on some small scraps of wood. And three antelope squirrels with the Big Snap E traps I mentioned on the previous post.

Depending on how you dispose of the ground squirrels you may have messy traps. I did when I took on the skunks who were systematically stealing chicken eggs at my last house. The guy who delivered the alfalfa for us told us how to clean a wire cage like a Hav-A-Hart trap even after sprayed by a skunk (yuck!). Wash the cage well with water, sit it out in the sun all day, then use Simple Green to clean. Believe it or not, Simple Green takes out all the odor out of metal.

I am becoming more adapted to my open space location. I killed a rattlesnake the other day with a cinder block. Necessity is the mother of invention....


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RE: Ground Squirrels

So, I went to go to the store the other day, my car wouldn't start. Seems *something* chewed through a necessary wire under the hood. *sigh*


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RE: Ground Squirrels

We thought the first one or two ground squirrels were cute too, lived here since 1987 and they started to appear last year. I think we are in for the long haul now as holes are everywhere on our 3 acres. HELP!!! We thought the woodpeckers were bad destroying our cedar siding, so now we have a new enemy...:O(


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RE: Ground Squirrels

Oh my gosh.. I have been laughing so hard at all we have tried to do to get rid of these little devils! LOL
ok.. so i do like the idea of trapping them & moving them BUT.. if you have 2.5 acres and a million of them.. what do you do? Its not like there are only 50 of them... and now there are babies.. ugh! i am so over them!!


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RE: Ground Squirrels

jul57.. We also have 2 and a half acres and they run rampant! There's no way, short of sitting out there with a shot gun all day long, that I'm going to get rid of all of them.

If you do container gardening, a friend of mine just told me a good way to do it so the little a$$holes won't get to my plants...

The answer is CINDER BLOCKS and smooth plastic pots. If you put the potted plant in a smooth pot and then on top of a standing up cinder block (edge of pots must be hanging over blocks), the little a$$holes can't climb up and eat your plant for dinner.

It might not look all that great, but it's something. My friend gets large plastic tubs to grow veggies in and puts it up on cinder blocks, and she hasn't had any problems with the plant-murdering critters!

I'm not sure about the rabbit that comes and eats my rose bush blooms... but we shall see if this will work for him too.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

Just read over 10 years of battles with these vermin. Thank you for the laughs. I have been fighting this war for quite some time myself and love seeing new ideas. Going to try the flour and cement for sure. For those with the devil spawn in attics, basements or crawl spaces, I highly recommend scattering moth balls in the space and then closing up the access point with steel wool when they have gone. I traped/shot over 100 of the little devils in one summer around our animal pens. The highlight was finding two of them in the live trap with a medium sized rattlesnake having a little party.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

I have had a measure of success against the ground squirrel invasion by using The Rat Zapper. It works for rats and surprisingly it also works for ground squirrels.
I tried using the Havahart live traps, but after catching and removing over 30 of them I realized that I wasn't making any headway. I also found out that's it's technically illegal to transport them because they are considered hazardous.
Luckily, a few went after the bait in the Rat Zapper that I had set out for the rats and they were instantly electrocuted. That set me on my mission and last year I wiped out the squirrel population - best bait was shelled peanuts.
Of course, they came back this year and the biggest mistake was not keeping the Rat Zapper baited and out in the yard all the time.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

We discovered that rats were tunneling underneath our foundation. We could see the holes on the ground near the foundation walls. One of them made it into a wall and died. The stench was almost unbearable for several weeks.

We hired our exterminator to dig a trench 12" wide and 12" deep around the entire circumference of the house. He filled it with cement. Then, he performed an entire house exclusion from chimney to ground, filling in every crack or gap where any climbing or tunneling creature could enter.

It has been over 7 months since the work was done, and we have not heard, smelled, or seen any evidence of tunneling rats or any other creature in our house. Yes, it was expensive but so was the damage that would have eventually happened, not to mention the YUK factor of having rats invade our home.

Recently, we have noticed tunnels underneath our fence and our tool shed. We have plans to address the shed, but how will we drive the critters away from the fence?

Here is a picture of the cement trench around the foundation:


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RE: Ground Squirrels

These things are crazy. At least I know what doesn't work after reading these posts. I have them eating all my plants roots (can't get them to eat the weeds-mind u). Now they are building houses next to my tree roots & chewing on hot tub wires. ;(
I contacted a friend that's a local grower figuring they might have a solution. If u live in a high or low dessert, these plants work quite well. I'm attaching the link. Have also heard peppermint oil disturbs them. I'm sure that it wouldn't be as much as they've annoyed me.
If u do the plants, their roots run about 8-12' in any direction so they plant them about 8' apart. Make sure u wear gloves when handling plants as they are poison. Also, make sure to bury the roots deep enough as the roots smell like dog poo.
Hope this helps. :)

Here is a link that might be useful: Gopher purge plants.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

I moved into a house. I planted a garden ands that is when I noticed I had squirrels. I tried everything like Jason posted. No luck. My doctor told me I had to walk at least an hour everyday. I could not believe the amount of squirrel holes as I walked around my block which is longer than most. I decided to start an anti-squirrel campaign and printed all the suggestions and went door to door around the whole block and explained if we all got together maybe we could get rid of them. I asked them if they were willing to keep a record so I could post the results. In In 2 months there were 123 that were either killed or captured. Still no luck. Sooner or later they were back. I decided to call a pest control co. and ask their advice. Most told me it was best for them to take care of the problem. Finally I talked to an older man who knew the area I lived in and he told me he had been to that area many times in the past and almost made his living in this area. He said squirrels were very very smart plus they gave birth up to 9 offspring as often as 2 times a year and being I live in San Diego the weather is good for them. Therefore they have a large enough population to reproduce faster than people can kill or relocate them. I told him I had read that a person can build a raised bed for a garden and lay any wire mesh that big enough to plant your plants and small enough so the squirrels could not get through. He kinda chuckled and said they would come out at another location and get to my vegetables anyway. Then after a while I got to thinking and came up with a great idea. I took some liter plastic soda bottles and some bigger that have pre-made tea in them. Cut the bottoms out of them, planted my tomatoes, cukes, bell peppers, ect. Planted carrots, radishes etc. in the larger ones. I have a fence where I used a screw and a washer to attach them to the fence. Small ones on top and the larger under them Then I attached chicken wire so the squirrels could not get to them.. WALLA success!!! I planted Zoyza grass to replace the original grass, After the Zoyzia got established I have not seen any more hole in my yard. Hope this helps anyone reading this post.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

I have enjoyed reading all these posts over the years. About 5 years ago ground squirrels moved into our neighborhood here in AZ. Especially our one acre of land. At first I thought they were so cute and I had fun watching them playing and multiplying...cute little babies running around everywhere. I plant a garden every year. The ground squirrels ate everything. Everything. They ate my pumpkins, zucchini, cucumbers, snow peas, tomatoes, beets, etc. The next year I planted in containers and put chicken wire around them while the squirrels watched and rejoiced that I was planting a garden just for them. The next year I tried again and tried even harder with chicken wire to keep my garden safe but again they celebrated and had another party. In the mean time they moved under our house and our shed and our woodpile and had babies and more babies and played in our driveway and played tag on our neighbors roof. So I said, at least I will have flowers! The squirrels heard me and they laughed. I bought moss roses and petunias and couldn't wait for them to blossom. In the morning the moss roses finally bloomed and they were so beautiful! I went in to get my camera and when I came out, 2 little ground squirrels were having a feast on my beautiful flowers, one by one, until nothing was left but the plant. I gave up. A year ago we moved in with my mom because she had heart problems and couldn't be alone. Now she is better so we're getting ready to move back. It is amazing what can happen to an acre of land when no one is around and no goats or sheep to eat the weeds. But we have been working hard and are getting closer to the point where we can move back. But there are so many new holes everywhere...their must be dozens of ground squirrels. I want my land back, and I want to have a garden with homegrown veggies, and I want flowers. I have never, ever believed in harming the ground squirrels. But after 5 years of destruction and no garden I am desperate. I have read all these posts and now we will have to decide what to do. Spring will be here before we know it! Oh help.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

A good while back, a lady came into the farm supply store where I was working and was almost in tears as she asked for help in getting rid of chipmunks. She said they had destroyed the foundation of her house and had dug holes throughout her lawn and yard. She bought some gopher poison, rat poison and traps and departed. Sadly, I do not know how she fared in her battle.

My bride and I have had many of the same experiences shared here. And we have likewise tried many of the same remedies. Shooting works well, as does the drowning bucket with seeds. Live traps work well too, although in my experience they do best if placed along a runway that the chipmunks use regularly, such as beside the house or porch or garage. And if it's a live trap, it has to be a Havahart because the critters will not go in a trap with only one entrance. Again, that's what I've found; maybe your experience has been different. I've had limited success with regular rat or snap traps. One of the very best solutions of all time is a five to six foot long gray rat snake placed at the entrance to an active burrow. Keeping the snake on chipmunks and out of the chicken house is one drawback to this. The snake is an even better "ratter" than cats, and the long length, age and size ensures that the snake can handle any size chipmunk.

For those of you too kind, squeamish or whatever to destroy these cute little things, I can assure you I share no such sentiments. We have seen and been told by many people of the damage that these creatures inflict on foundations and buildings. We've drowned about thirty or more and that number will hopefully be going up as we are seeing more chipmunk activity around our house and yard every week. We have an active red-shouldered hawk nest in our backyard, and they hunt the place often. They have at least two chicks to feed as of this week. Even so, the parent birds can't keep up with the breeding rate of chipmunks.

We've tried poison, and I'm not sure of its effectiveness since the chipmunk is a cache critter; it fills its cheek pouches with food and carries it back to a storage depot for use in hard times. Poison cloaked in peanut butter may make poison a good to better option. And as many of you, I fear for collateral damage. I make sure any poisoned peanut butter balls are placed well down in a burrow.

I wish you well in your efforts. Chipmunks are a very serious and difficult problem for the homeowner.


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RE: Ground Squirrels

Agreed -- there are some funny stories here. But we are probably laughing to keep from crying. Oh my gosh -- I'm getting depressed. I'm in Arizona, and an empty 2-acre lot nearby has an exploding population of ground squirrels. They are truly running amok, and we are certain that we will be dealing with them directly very soon; for sure the people across the road from them are! It is obvious that relocation is not an option.

I've been doing some web searching in hopes of finding an effective method of control -- doesn't look promising. I did notice that some had relative success by aggressively filling in tunnels.

Has anyone tried Burrow Blocker or Tunnel Fill?


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RE: Ground Squirrels

Wow! What a post. We have cats. We have ground squirrels. I have an excellent .177 cal air rifle. When they show themselves I kill them. Sorry to be crude, but I have no heart when it comes to ground squirrels. One of their little sub-terranean complexes almost turned my tractor over. It was a close thing. I am three years into this program, have killed dozens and just saw my first one this year. The neighbors are now asking if I will help them out. I don't want to poison them, which one neighbor did, as I don't want to hurt the cats, dogs, grey squirrels ( yes, I do distinguish between the two...although given the job they are doing on my walnuts I may change my mind) and other critters. My wife who generally wouldn't hurt a fly looks the other way on the ground squirrels. I have really tightened up the house too, so there are none in the attic.


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