Tag Archives: squirrel problems

Neighbor Vs. Neighbor in Squirrel Issue

Squirrel (9)Recently, neighbors in a Lincoln County, Maine area are suing a woman for feeding wildlife.  They have been trying to get her to stop feeding squirrels and chipmunks, because they say the wild animals she attracts to her home are getting into their homes and yards and causing costly damage.  One neighbor is quoted as saying, “The chipmunks and the red squirrels are getting into my house and destroying my furniture every winter.”  Others claim mice, rats and skunks are also attracted to the area, because of her efforts to feed wildlife.

It’s easy to see both sides of this legal issue.  Feeding birds, squirrels and chipmunks seems a perfectly normal and humane thing to do!  It’s fun to watch squirrels chomping on seeds and nuts, or chipmunks stuffing their cheeks full of food.  People like to watch these animals and don’t see the harm in helping them get through the winter.

On the other hand, deliberately attracting wildlife to your yard affects everyone around you.  It can range from simple annoyance at cleaning up dropped seeds or nut shells to having squirrels nesting in your chimney, wall or attic because your neighbor likes to feed the squirrels.  Squirrels can cause a great deal of costly damage to a home, chewing on electrical wiring, soiling and destroying insulation, infesting the area with mites or other bugs, and attracting further wildlife, like mice, rats, raccoons, skunks or snakes.

Most wildlife protection agencies agree that feeding wild animals can actually end up harming them, by making them less capable or willing to seek out their natural food sources. Their diets change, making them weaker or sick.  And, they become less afraid of humans, which endangers both them and people.

Squirrel Problems

Squirrel on a branch
Squirrel on a branch, waiting to come inside.
(Artwork by Sharon Davis. Contact us for her contact info.)

I just moved into my apartment about two months ago, and now I have squirrel problems.

All of a sudden, I have a new roommate who’s just driving me crazy.  He comes and goes whenever he pleases.  He acts like he owns the place.  He takes some of my stuff, and breaks other stuff – he ripped a hole right in the window screen and doesn’t even care.  He’s always loud, especially in the morning, knocking things over, constantly going in and out of my place, feet pounding and waking me up.

My poor cat doesn’t know what to make of it all.  She just sits there watching it, trying to stay out of his way.  He acts like she’s not there and will even step on her from time to time.  Once, he picked up her cat food and walked off with it.  I was gone that morning, so I didn’t notice until I got back from work that night.

Then, one day, he disappeared behind my entertainment center and stripped some of the wires back there.  I don’t know what he intended to do, but he just left the job half-finished, the insulation ripped right off of the wires.  I haven’t been able to get my DVD player to work ever since, but it’s not like he cares.

I’m at my wits end, because the worst part of it is he doesn’t pay rent.  He doesn’t have to.  He’s a squirrel.

My squirrel problems have got to end soon.  This new “roommate” of mine literally leaves his crap all over the place – in my sock drawer, on kitchen counters, on the living room floor.  I found a squirrel hair in my cereal bowl the other day and just gagged and threw away the cereal box.

I thought problem squirrels limited themselves to chewing people’s trees and gardens, or crawling inside their attics.  My parents have a nice place outside the city, on a ½ acre lot with lots of trees, and they’ve had problems with squirrels every now and then.  They have several birdfeeders, so I wasn’t surprised when my mom told me about a squirrel that was performing all kinds of acrobatics to get at the bird seed.  I warned her that they’d end up with a squirrel nest in the attic some day.

But, squirrel problems were the last thing on my mind when I got my apartment in the city.  I’d asked the landlord if he’d had any problems with mice or rats or pigeons, but I failed to ask about squirrels.  Apparently, I’m the only one of his tenants that has this problem with a squirrel walking in and out of the window, making himself at home in my apartment.  I guess I need to just repair the window screen and call a professional wildlife removal service company.  Otherwise, I’ll have to take his share of the rent out of the nut collection he stuck inside my couch.