The Grey Squirrel (Sciurus carolinensis)
An adult Grey Squirrel is around 25cm long, with a tail length of 22cm. Both sexes are a similar size. The Grey Squirrels winter coat is grey above with a white underside, whilst the summer coat is sorter and brownish grey above.
“Once inside they can chew woodwork and plasterboard, strip insulation from electrical wiring, tear up fibreglass insulation. They will also nest in loft spaces”.
Grey Squirrels are active in the daytime. They build nests (called dreys) from twigs and leaves in trees and they may also use hollow trees for nesting.
They breed twice a year. The first litters are born in February/March, with the young taking around 10 weeks to wean. Second litters are born in June/July and leave the nest in August/September.
Grey Squirrels eat a wide range of food items ranging from nuts, fruit, birds eggs and nestling birds. In urban gardens much of their diet comes from food put out for birds (or put for squirrels) and they can regularly be seen taking food from bird tables and nut feeders. Surplus food is often stored for use at a later date.
Squirrels as Pests
The most serious damage in urban areas happens when squirrels enter roof spaces of buildings by climbing walls or jumping from nearby trees or fences. Once inside they can chew woodwork and plasterboard, strip insulation from electrical wiring, tear up fibreglass insulation. They will also nest in loft spaces.
In parks and woodland, they damage trees by stripping the bark. This can result in the death of the tree.
In gardens Squirrels will raid bird tables and feeders. This is welcomed by some householders, but causes considerable annoyance to others. Squirrels will also dig holes in borders and lawns to bury food.
Where squirrels are entering loft spaces they can cause damage which means that any access holes need to be blocked off to physically stop the squirrel getting in. For example gaps and entrance holes can be blocked with tightly wedged wire netting. Any missing roof tiles or slates should be replaced and any overhanging tree branches close to you property that could allow squirrels to access onto the building should be removed. Proofing must be strong enough to deter the squirrel, which can chew through even strong materials, and can show considerable determination and ingenuity in order to enter a building. Any proofing work must be carried out whilst the squirrel(s) are not in the roof space.
Call Bromley Pest Control for wasp control, rat control, mouse control, pest control, pigeon control, squirrel control flea control, bee control, fox control, ant control.
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