The grey squirrel population in North West England has boomed over the last 20 years to the degee that they have grown to be a major household pest dealt with by Squirrels in Attic Pest Control
The grey squirrels which we see in our gardens and parks (Sciurus carolinensis) are not native to Britain, having been brought here less than 200 years Canada and America.
Like the other members of the family Sciuridae, the Grey Squirrel is a hoarder; it staches food away in many small caches for subsequent recovery. Some hoards are temporary, particularly those made near the source of a sudden glut of food.
Others are more permanent and are not retrieved until months later. It has been estimated that each squirrel makes several thousand hoards each year. Squirrels have very accurate spatial memory for the locations of these hoards, and use distant and nearby landmarks to locate them. Smell is used once the squirrel is within a short distance of the target.
The nest of the grey squirrel is called a dray (or drey) and it is usual for the female to have two litters per year, each of two to four young..
They are minor problems, digging bulbs and eating food intended for birds but become major pests when they enter our houses.
It is increasingly common for Trafford Pest Control to attend homes where a nest has been placed in a loft or attic space.
Squirrels are true rodents and as such have teeth which never stop growing; the very word rodent comes from the Latin word rodere meaning to gnaw and this they do very successfully.
It is rare to visit an attic space where a dray has been constructed and find that they have not damaged electrical wiring, indeed it is estimated that up to 40 percent of fires without an obviously attributable cause may be started by rodents damaging wiring.
Unfortunately they can also chew through water-pipes, especially with the recent movement towards plastic push-fit piping.
As if that is not enough, most household insurance policies specifically exclude damage by rodents so if a squirrel floods your property by gnawing through a pipe in the attic you may find yourself without cover.
Eradicating Squirrels in Loft requires a professional, often because the law regarding squirrels is complicated and ever changing. You cannot simply obtain a packet of rodent poison from your hardware store and deal with them that way as you would be committing a criminal offence.
Furthermore you cannot trap them and move them some distance from your home, not only would removing a squirrel from the area of its food hoards probably cause it do die of starvation, it is also a criminal offence under the Wildlife & Countryside Act 1981 which makes it illegal to release a grey squirrel in Britain.
That pertains also to rescuing and/or releasing injured squirrels.
In the vast majority of cases trapping is the the only option and this must be done in a specified manner with routine, timed inspections of the traps.
Trapped squirrels should be then despatched humanely.
If you have a squirrel problem in Lancashire, Cheshire or Manchester telephone us on 0161 930 8814