Flying squirrels, known for their gliding abilities, are fascinating creatures that inhabit various regions worldwide. While they are admired for their graceful aerial movements and endearing appearance, these creatures can pose unique challenges when they decide to take up residence in human dwellings. At KP Wildlife Control, we’ve removed more than our fair share of flying squirrels over the years and wanted to talk about some of the unique challenges associated with doing so.
Adaptations and Behavior
Flying squirrels possess several adaptations that enable them to glide effortlessly through the air. With the help of a patagium, a loose fold of skin between their front and hind legs, they can extend their gliding range significantly. However, this adaptation also allows them to access small openings in buildings, making them adept climbers and nimble intruders. Their nocturnal habits and ability to remain silent while moving can make it difficult to detect their presence until a noticeable infestation occurs.
One of the primary concerns with flying squirrels is the structural damage they can cause to buildings. Like other squirrels, they tend to chew on various materials, including wood, insulation, electrical wiring, and pipes. These destructive behaviors not only compromise the integrity of the structure but also create fire hazards and increase the risk of water damage. Additionally, their droppings and urine can soil attics and ceiling spaces, leading to unpleasant odors and potential health issues.
Noise and Disturbance
Flying squirrels may become a nuisance due to the noise they create. Their activities in attics and wall voids can result in scratching, scurrying, and vocalizations during the night, causing sleep disruptions for homeowners. The constant noise can be particularly distressing when they establish communal nests and breed, leading to an increase in their population within the residence.
While the risk of disease transmission from flying squirrels to humans is relatively low, these animals can still carry parasites like fleas, ticks, and mites. In rare cases, they may also carry diseases like typhus and Lyme disease, which can be transmitted to humans through the bites of infected parasites. Therefore, it is essential to address flying squirrel infestations promptly to minimize any potential health risks.
Humane and Effective Removal Methods
Given the challenges associated with flying squirrel infestations, it is crucial to employ humane and effective removal methods. Exclusion techniques, such as sealing entry points and installing one-way exclusion devices, can prevent their access to buildings while allowing them to exit safely. Trapping can be another option, but it should be carried out by professionals who prioritize the well-being of the squirrels. Once the infestation is resolved, it is vital to clean and sanitize the affected areas to eliminate any remaining odors and potential health hazards.
Get Help from an Experienced Wildlife Specialist
While flying squirrels may be enchanting creatures in their natural habitats, their presence in residential buildings can lead to a range of unique challenges. By understanding the distinctive challenges associated with flying squirrels and implementing appropriate solutions, homeowners can ensure a safe and harmonious living environment for themselves and the squirrels. If you’re having problems with flying squirrels on your property, reach out to our team of wildlife removal experts at KP Wildlife. We can be reached at (443-282-5035), or you can send us a message online.