There are quite a few squirrels in the family Sciuridae, but the two species that are most commonly encountered as nuisance animals in Greater Atlanta and most of the south are the Eastern gray squirrel (which we'll talk about on this page), and the flying squirrel. If you're not sure which squirrels you have, please feel free to give us a call. We'll be happy to help you identify "your" squirrels.
Gray squirrels are most commonly grayish in color, but there's a lot of variation. We've encountered "gray" squirrels ranging in color from jet black to albino, along with a lot of reddish-brown ones. They're tree-dwellers by nature, but they're even happier to find a nice, warm, dry attic to live in (especially during the cooler months).
Squirrels may live in the trees (or our attics), but they also spend a lot of time on the ground burying nuts. They're known as "scatter hoarders," which means they bury nuts all over the place -- often in hundreds or even more than a thousand different locations. It's not clear how well they remember all those places. It's possible that they just sniff around until the smell the the nuts they buried, and then start digging; or it's possible that they only remember the general area where they cached their food, and start digging randomly. With so many caches, their odds of hitting one are pretty good.
This burying behavior, incidentally, is one of the beneficial things that squirrels do. It help propagate the trees that produced the nuts.
When needed, we use top-secret, stealth, night-vision technology to positively identify your animal problem.
Squirrels actually are not classified as "pests" like their cousins the rats, but rather as "nuisance wildlife." That means that they're treated with a lot more respect. It also means that there's no such thing as a "squirrel exterminator." If you meet one, turn him in. He's breaking the law.
That being said, there are plenty of reasons why you absolutely do not want squirrels living in your home; and when that does happen, you need to have them humanely removed and permanently sealed out. We call this "squirrel exclusion" or "squirrel-proofing," and we do a lot of it.
Part of the problem with squirrels in a home is that they make college students in a dorm seem fastidious by comparison. Squirrels are hoarders by nature, and they hoard things that really don't seem to make sense. We've found squirrels hoarding everything from jewelry to toys.
Squirrels also can present a disease risk when they get into homes. Their droppings can harbor bacterial and fungal pathogens that can cause human diseases, as can their fleas, ticks, and other parasites. They can also stink the place up with their urine and droppings. If your air-conditioning or heating system is in the attic, it's very possible that it will spread airborne pathogens or odors throughout your home.
Incidentally, that's why we offer clean-up and decontamination services as a standard part of our squirrel-removal plan. We clean up the mess the squirrels leave behind, pack it up, and cart it away so you don't have to. We also offer contaminated insulation replacement as an optional add-on service; and we're also licensed to apply insecticides to kill any displaced parasites, if needed.
Like all rodents, squirrels are also gnawers. They gnaw to eat, they gnaw to make holes to get into or out of places, and they gnaw for the sheer joy of gnawing. Mainly, though, they gnaw to keep their teeth sharp and in good shape.
The problem is that when they get into homes, squirrels gnaw on things like PVC pipe, HVAC duct work, stored personal belongings, and worst of all, electrical wiring. Squirrels and other rodents cause many thousands of home fires every year when they gnaw on live electrical wires. This is something of special concern to those of us in the Atlanta area because of all our irreplaceable historic buildings.
Squirrels also damage other things, including the house itself, and products that you store in your attic. We've seen many cases where valuable collectibles, antique furniture, sentimental heirlooms, and even stored dolls and toys, have been destroyed by squirrel gnawing. They really can do a lot of damage.
There are several common signs that you have a squirrel problem. Here are some of the most frequent ones:
These are the most common signs, but they can also be caused by other critters like flying squirrels, rats, or birds. Not to worry. If we're unsure about which animals are living in your attic, we have ways to find out. We even have infrared night-vision cameras that we can set up in your attic to identify the culprits.
The only permanent solution to a squirrel problem is to humanely remove them, and then seal them out so they can't back in. That's what we do, and we do it best.
Rid-A-Critter has the experience, know-how, and equipment to solve any squirrel problem, whether the building is a fishing cabin in the woods or a huge industrial building. Our wildlife management professionals are specialists -- not handymen who do a bit of animal control work as a sideline.
Our teams in the field are supported by a team of field service supervisors who make sure that the technicians have everything they need to do their jobs, and who can deliver it quickly if they don't. They also make sure that every job is completed to Rid-A-Critter's exacting standards.
If you have a problem with squirrels, please call us for a no-obligation inspection and consultation. We look forward to hearing from you. In the meantime, please have a look our some pictures of squirrel removal jobs we've done over the years.
Here are pictures of squirrel removal work we've done in the Greater Atlanta, Georgia area.
Squirrels enlarged a knot hole into an entry hole
Atlanta squirrel-proofing job
Rooftop squirrel removal job in Smyrna, GA
A squirrel gnawed through wire mesh in Atlanta
DIY squirrel-proofing attempt in Marietta
Squirrel nest in an attic fan in Marietta
Squirrel gnaw hole in a house in Avondale Estates
Sandy Springs, Georgia squirrel-trapping job
Sealing squirrels out of a house in Stone Mountain
Friendly squirrel visiting our office for lunch
Roof damage at Atlanta squirrel removal job
Severe squirrel damage to a roof in Decatur
Squirrel damage to the roof of a house in Grayson
DIY squirrel-proofing in Atlanta didn't work out
DIY squirrel-proofing attempt in Marietta
Squirrel hole in the soffit in Powder Springs
Squirrel hole in the chimney of a house in Conyers
Squirrel got stuck in a septic pipe and died
Failed DIY squirrel-proofing attempt in Atlanta
Squirrel damage to a house in Stone Mountain
Atlanta squirrel removal job needs repairs
Squirrel nest removed from rain gutter in Atlanta
Baby squirrels removed from an Atlanta home
Squirrel hole in the shingles of a house in Tucker
Squirrel damage to the roof of an Atlanta house
Squirrel droppings in the attic in Sandy Springs
Squirrel damage to a roof soffit in Fayetteville
Squirrel damage to a soffit vent in Atlanta
These pictures represent only a small sample of the thousands of squirrel-removal and squirrel-proofing jobs we've done in the Metro Atlanta area. We have the tools and personnel to handle any squirrel control job, so please call us today for a no-obligation consultation.