Wildlife encounters in rural and urban areas are happening more often today for many reasons, including land development, climate change, and invasive species. With over 800 species of wildlife in Arizona, it becomes more difficult for them to find food, water, and shelter. They begin adapting to an environment that includes humans, finding what they need in Sedona neighborhoods.
Everyday wildlife encounters in Sedona include raccoons, skunks, rats and mice, squirrels, opossums, bats, snakes, groundhogs, ferrets, and numerous bird species.
If wildlife is causing problems for you and your family, you must seek help from a wildlife removal company. One reason is that each animal has specific rules and regulations that must be followed. The special status of wildlife is also important. You can face punishments for violating endangered and threatened species laws.
Wildlife can be cute to watch, but they can also become a nuisance. Animals are a nuisance when they behave in the following ways:
- Causing injury or threatening to cause injury to a human.
- Displaying aggressive behavior.
- Exhibiting abnormal behaviors suggests it may have a disease.
- Entering your home, office, or other structure on your property.
- Raiding human food sources such as gardens.
- Harming domestic pets.
- Getting stuck and unable to remove themselves from the property.
- Refusing to leave due to protecting their young.
Below are examples of common wildlife in Sedona and their nuisance behaviors.
Raccoons in Sedona are omnivores, meaning they will eat whatever they can find. Examples include insects, fruits, nuts, human food, pet food, and fish. Raccoons use their human-like hands to unlatch food storage boxes, tip over trash cans, steal garden crops, snatch chickens from a coop, dig holes in sod, grab fish in ponds, and climb trees or chimneys.
Raccoons will travel a few miles each night in search of food. They are nocturnal, but seeing them during the day does not always mean they are diseased. Raccoons have features that make them easy to identify, like their permanent black mask and striped tails. Don’t let their cuteness fool you, though. If raccoons can get into your home, they will cause a lot of destruction.
Raccoons enjoy building nests in your attic. In the process, they scratch flooring, shred insulation, rip drywall, and destroy sentimental items. They may also clog vents and ducts with materials, creating fire hazards.
In Arizona, raccoons are fur-bearing animals that may require permits during trapping seasons. Following the laws is crucial, like using correct traps and releasing them on your property. They cannot be relocated due to the potential for spreading disease. Keeping mamas and babies together is essential if a raccoon has recently given birth.
Raccoons create a space in your home where they leave feces and urine. The area should receive sanitization and ectoparasitic treatments.
Get rid of rats and mice
The Norway rat, brown rat, roof rat, and the house mouse cause the most problems for Sedona homeowners. Like raccoons, rats and mice do much of their work at night or when the home is quiet. Rats and mice cost homeowners a lot of money in contaminated food. They also create fire hazards by building nests under stoves or in vents.
Rats and mice control must occur at the first sign of activity. Having just one rodent problem is rare. Usually, when you see one rat or mouse, many others are nearby. That’s because they multiply many times throughout the year, five or more times a year, delivering five or more babies each time. In less than one year, you can have an infestation.
One rodent can create a lot of damage when chewing wires, drywall, baseboards, cabinets, carpet, and furniture. Think how much damage can occur with an infestation. Can you imagine that many rodents scurrying around your home? Rats only need a space the size of a golf ball, and mice need a hole the size of a quarter to squeeze through to access other spaces.
Effectively pairing the right trap and bait to remove rodents is crucial. Ineffective pairing leads to dead rodents stuck in your walls, decaying, and lingering foul smells. Rats and mice are clever. They investigate everything new in their environment and will avoid something if suspicious. Removal can take days or weeks, depending on the size of the population.
They aren’t the only rodents that can damage your home.
Squirrels are rodents, and multiple species of tree, rock, and ground squirrels exist in Arizona. The one you see daily in your backyard is likely the rock or tree squirrels. They are attracted to easy food sources like bird feeders and open gardens. Squirrels enjoy seeds, grains, fruits, vegetables, bird eggs, nuts, and some flowers. Some may strip bark from your trees to eat or use it as nesting materials.
Squirrels create dens where they hoard their findings. Rock squirrels will burrow underground, making a tunnel system with multiple entrances. Burrows are dangerous when they exist under driveways, foundations, and walkways. Encountering a burrow can cause injury to humans, horses, and farm equipment.
Squirrels will make the attic a den when possible and chew through siding, shingles, wire vents, and wood to get there. Squirrels must constantly gnaw on items to prevent their teeth from overgrowth, which can be painful. This can be bad news for your home and property. We can get rid of squirrels.
Squirrels are usually easy to flush out of spaces, but sometimes a trap is needed. You must obtain proper permitting when necessary. The mating season of squirrels in Arizona is usually March and July. Thirty days later, they give birth to a litter of between five and seven. When removing squirrels, ensure mothers and babies stay together.
The little brown and free-tailed bats are the most prevalent in Sedona. Bats are great for the ecosystem. One bat consumes thousands of insects each night. They also pollinate plants. Bats don’t typically threaten humans, but they can be a nuisance.
One of the biggest problems is bat guano or feces that contains uric acid, enough to stain and erode woods and metals. Guano also has a foul odor and can grow mold spores that, if inhaled, may cause respiratory issues in humans. An example is Histoplasmosis.
All bats have a special status in Arizona, either endangered or threatened. Diseases like the white-nosed syndrome are impacting bat populations everywhere. Their status prevents you from removing them during the maternity season, which typically runs from May to September in Arizona.
Once out of your home, you must clean areas where there was bat guano. It’s critical to apply ectoparasitic and sanitization treatments.
Thirteen species of rattlesnakes exist in Arizona. According to Poison Control, less than 1% of rattlesnake bites are fatal for humans. If a rattlesnake is in your home or yard, it is searching for food. They like small mammals, birds, eggs, worms, rodents, centipedes, frogs, and other amphibians and reptiles.
Rattlesnakes don’t damage property, but their presence creates fear in humans. Because rattlesnakes are venomous, they can pose a threat to humans. Therefore, they are considered nuisance wildlife.
Snakes enter a home searching for food. During the inspection, we also look for signs of rodent activity. Rattlesnakes will usually leave your property on their own, but if one is stuck or stubborn, you may need to remove it using appropriate safety gear, including snake traps and catch poles.
Skunks and Opossums
Skunks and opossums are different species but almost identical in their nuisance behaviors. They both will take up residency in your home, breaking their way in when necessary. They are best known for the foul-smelling fluid they spray when they feel threatened. If they spray under your home, on your pets, or, worse, on you, the smell can take days or weeks to fade.
Some states have just two species of skunks. Not Arizona. There are four species: striped, spotted, hooded, and hog-nosed. The striped skunk is the one you may find in or under your home.
If you have a nuisance skunk or opossum, you have foods they prefer somewhere on your property. They eat birdseed, sunflower seeds, pet food, garbage, bird eggs, insects, snakes, lizards, frogs, rats, and mice. To get rid of skunks, get rid of these food sources.
Skunks and opossums will dig holes in your North Arizona yard and garden, steal fruits and vegetables, rummage through your trash for leftovers, and help themselves to pet or livestock feed left out in the open. Trapping skunks and opossums are legal, but to release them somewhere other than on your property, you must acquire a permit from the Arizona Game and Fish Commission. You must know the laws before attempting removal.
Skunks and opossums will often leave on their own after a few weeks unless they have given birth, usually in May and June. They will wait until their young are old enough before leaving. If you remove the mother with a trap, manually remove the babies but allow the family to stay together.
How Professional Wildlife Control Services Can Help You
Nuisance wildlife have the potential for carrying disease, are filthy, and if they feel threatened, may become aggressive. Professionals can get the job done while keeping you and the animal safe. They also:
- Have licensure and insurance.
- Have extensive training on wildlife habits and habitats.
- Understand local, state, and federal laws.
Outstanding service. Cooper was very knowledgeable and good to work with. He answered all of our questions and communicated with us on a regular basis throughout the process. He seemed to care just as much about fixing our critter issue as we did. Also learned a few interesting squirrel facts along the way. Our only regret was that we didn't call Critter Control earlier!
First, allow me to say that I've been with Critter Control for a year now and I've been pleased with the service for the most part. Today however was different. Raymond was my service guy and introduced himself as my new technician going forward. He was very thorough and explained to me how the bait stations worked and even showed me the inside of them. Unfortunately, there was a snake in one of the bait stations and because he knew of my fear, he called for backup to have it removed. He takes great pride in his job and worked diligently until all issues were resolved. Thank You Raymond for your excellence service. You are greatly appreciated!
Jack was our Wildlife Damage Control Technician from Critter Control of Dayton. Jack was very professional and explained exactly what he would do and when. He then followed through performing his service for two weeks. Although he did not catch any animals in the two traps he placed on our roof near two holes, he checked them daily, reset them as necessary, verified there were no animals nesting in the holes, and then sealed them with painted steel plates. If anyone has a problem with critters in or around your house, I highly recommend Critter Control as the solution to your problem.
Critter Control came right out and explained what they were going to do, how they would retrieve the squirrel and how they would capture it. I would definitely call on them again!
We had a family of squirrels in our attic. Our technician did an excellent job an over a couple of weeks to eliminate our invasion. He communicated daily including photos to document entry points and his progress. We were very satisfied.
This company has been great. The technician Kensi was very through and checked everywhere to make sure all access points were found. After a skunk was found in the trap on a Saturday morning they came to pick it up very quickly.
Michael was super friendly and knowledgeable. He checked my entire house and recommended and installed the solution within an hour.
We are under contract with your company and so far they are doing a fine job. Many thanks.
Excellent work environment full of presence of God. Professional and dedicated staff. A good place if you want to have your children in a place where Christian values are protected and encouraged.
Great company and amazing service, the staff is extremely knowledgeable and friendly! Thank you to the staff and especially to Bubba for taking care of my property and giving it that "personal touch" to rid and maintain it from pests and bugs! Appreciate you guys and look forward to continuing business together!