Wildlife Problems in Gatlinburg, TN
Surrounded by mountains, Gatlinburg, TN, is home to many forms of wildlife. While some are exciting to watch in their natural habitat, others are a bother for Tennessee residents. Damage and disease are just a few problems associated with local pests.
Openings in siding or roofs give bats the chance to enter Gatlinburg houses. Once a colony roosts indoors, bat droppings build up quickly, resulting in stains and odors. Having the pests' waste in a home increases the risk of histoplasmosis, a respiratory illness spread by airborne fungal spores.
Squirrels in Yards
The eastern gray squirrel is a regular visitor in Tennessee's residential areas. Bird feeders attract them to lawns, where squirrels usually den in tree cavities or among branches.
However, they sometimes choose sheds or attics for their nests. In addition to damage, flea and tick infestations often occur when squirrels invade homes.
Conflicts with Deer
White-tailed deer cause serious issues in residential areas by overgrazing gardens and tearing the leaves from plants and trees. They also put Gatlinburg drivers at risk for motor vehicle collisions when they bound across roads at night.
Raccoons & Skunks in Gatlinburg Yards
Smaller nuisance wildlife, like raccoons and skunks, also thrive in Gatlinburg. These animals often live close to people, stealing food scraps and nesting under porches or in crawl spaces. The striped skunk is the most common species in Tennessee. These smelly pests leave their dens after dark to dig up lawns in search of insects.
Raccoons are also nocturnal. They have small, agile paws and are able to open trashcan lids and dumpsters to access food. While skunks and raccoons usually shy away from people, both pests can carry rabies. People should never approach or handle these animals.
Nuisance pests in Gatlinburg are irritating no matter their size. A tiny chipmunk can find its way inside a home and nest in basements or garages. Chipmunks typically burrow close to houses and consume fallen seeds.
Coyotes are large predators that homeowners may spot on their lawns. These hunters spend time in Tennessee neighborhoods looking for food. Though the pests rarely harm humans, cats and small dogs can fall victim to coyote attacks.