Squirrels have a reputation for being adorable and beneficial creatures. Still, they can also be incredibly destructive if they get out of hand and you have too many of them in or around your yard. When they start to take over a space, they can tear up your garden or get inside the walls of your home. Once that happens, they can be very difficult to get rid of, so your best option will be to keep them away as much as possible.
In this article, you’ll learn:
- 5 Ways to Keep Squirrels Away
- Top 3 Natural Solutions
- What Attracts Squirrels
Knowing some of the best prevention methods for squirrels can help you keep your home safe and keep your garden intact.
Ed has been working in the pest control industry for years helping 1,000's of homeowners navigate the world of insect and rodent management. He manages Pest Strategies now helping homeowners around the world!
Table of Contents
5 Ways to Keep Squirrels Away
There are quite a few different DIY ways to keep squirrels out of your yard but not all of them are going to be effective for your particular region or squirrel problem. Knowing all the best methods for deterring squirrels can help you decide which one will be best for your specific circumstances.
Get a Motion-Activated Sprinkler
While squirrels are not necessarily repelled by water, they are not big fans of being startled. They are incredibly skittish creatures and will be less inclined to go in your yard if there are things there that can take them by surprise. Motion-activated sprinklers are a great way to let squirrels know that they will not be able to be comfortable in your yard.
One of the best ways to set up motion-activated sprinklers is to film your backyard and take note of where squirrels are getting in and what their access points are. Then, you can set up the sprinklers in those areas and make sure the squirrels don’t make their way into the yard at all.
Get Squirrel-Proof Bird Feeders
Having bird feeders in your yard can be incredibly relaxing and bring a pleasant atmosphere to the house. However, they can also attract squirrels and other rodents like rats and mice. These intruders will not only eat all the bird food, but they can also potentially spread diseases to the birds and pass on parasites that can be harmful to the bird population.
Luckily, squirrel-proof bird feeders are a very effective way of keeping these pests out of your backyard and away from your home and vegetable garden. Squirrels and other rodents will quickly learn that your backyard is not a good food source and move on to another spot.
Use Ultrasonic Deterrents
Like many other animals, squirrels can hear frequencies that humans can’t detect. You can use this trait to your advantage by installing ultrasonic deterrents in your yard that will help protect the perimeter and keep squirrels and other rodents away from your home.
Ultrasonic deterrents are small devices that can be installed around your yard that emit a sound that is repellent to all kinds of rodents and other wildlife. However, because the human ear only has a specific range of frequencies that it can hear, you and your family won’t be disturbed by the sound. This is an excellent option if you want to use something discreet for your squirrel deterring techniques.
Apply Fox Urine
One of the best ways to keep wildlife out of your yard is to introduce other natural predators. Squirrels aren’t afraid of much, but they are terrified of the other animals in the wild that are solely focused on eating them. One of their most feared predators is the common fox.
While you don’t have to get a pet fox to keep squirrels out of your yard, you can create the illusion of a fox nearby. Fox urine can be purchased at almost any hunting and fishing supply store and is an excellent squirrel deterrent. By spreading the predator urine around your yard, you can be sure that the squirrels will stay away.
Use Live Traps
If you have tried all the above deterrents and none of them have worked, you can always try physically removing the squirrels. This method is beneficial if a squirrel has made its home in a place like your garage or basement. It may be difficult to lure it out with any other methods.
Live traps are cages that will close as soon as a squirrel makes its way inside. Place some food like peanut butter or acorns in the trap and place it near your trash cans or under the eaves of your porch. Keep an eye on it to ensure you don’t leave the squirrel in it for too long. Once you catch one in the squirrel trap, you can relocate it to another area far away from your home where it will be able to live freely and happily.
Top 3 Natural Solutions
While all of the above solutions can be very effective, you might want to find the most natural ways and eco-friendly options available to you. If this is true, you have a few choices that can be both environmentally conscious and work very well. Choosing these methods can help you ensure that the ground squirrels aren’t harmed and that your local ecosystem is left undamaged.
Plant Squirrel-Repellent Vegetation
You can grow many plants in your garden that act as natural squirrel repellents and can help you maintain your garden’s integrity while still keeping varmints away. One of the most repellent plants you can grow is mint. Fresh mint has a very strong smell, and it will travel over a long distance, warning squirrels that they should stay out of your yard.
Several flowers act as very effective squirrel repellents and have a very aesthetically pleasing look. Daffodils and geraniums are crucial to keeping critters out of your garden. Plus, they have the added benefit of being incredibly beautiful and easy to take care of.
Use an Apple Cider Vinegar or Cayenne Pepper Spray
While many people might want to use pesticides to get rid of unwanted intruders in their yard, there are a lot of natural pesticides that work just as well but don’t have the same unnatural effect on the environment. If this is what you’re looking for, it’s very easy to make your own squirrel-repellent spray.
All you have to do is mix a solution of water, apple cider vinegar, and cayenne pepper and put it in a spray bottle. The capsaicin in the hot pepper, as well as the strong scent of the vinegar, will work wonders keeping squirrels and other types of pests out of your yard. Simply spray the solution around your yard and the areas where you think the squirrels are getting in.
Lay Down Mulch or Gravel
One of the biggest annoyances with squirrels is that they like to dig. This can be a big deterrent when it comes to gardening, especially if you want to plant bulbs and need to keep them underground. Luckily, you can do quite a few things to protect your plants and flowers that haven’t bloomed yet.
Lay down mulch or gravel over the areas where you plan to plant your bulbs. Squirrels hate the feel of bark mulch and aren’t strong enough to dig up gravel. This also has the added benefit of giving you an extra landscaping element that can enhance your yard or garden.
What attracts squirrels?
Squirrels are most attracted to areas like backyards and gardens because they have plentiful amounts of food. They are also attracted to areas that have a lot of other wildlife.
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What Attracts Squirrels?
Like many other pests, squirrels are most attracted to areas like backyards and gardens because they have plentiful amounts of food. If you have a vegetable garden, be sure to cover it as much as you can with chicken wire. Squirrels can get on top of it, but they can’t get inside to get to the actual food. Sooner or later, they will figure this out and move onto another area or yard. You can also completely cover your plants with tarps or install a greenhouse that is sealed and impenetrable from the outside. Blocking access to food is one of the best ways to get rid of squirrels. They are relatively smart and won’t bother with a food source that is too difficult to get to.
Squirrels are also attracted to areas that have a lot of other wildlife. If, for example, you have a bird feeder, they will be attracted to the birdseed and the birds themselves. Squirrels have been known to eat small birds if they can’t find food elsewhere, so removing your bird feeder until your squirrel problem has subsided is a good idea.
Getting rid of squirrels can be a difficult undertaking if you don’t know what they look for and what they’re attracted to. Knowing some of the best methods for removing them and keeping them away can help you protect your yard and home. Plus, you can be sure that you are doing it humanely and sustainably.
If you have tried all the above solutions and are still experiencing squirrel issues, a pest control professional can help. They will know how to remove the squirrels you have and help you identify problem areas around your home. Being able to protect your garden and the other wildlife in your backyard is an excellent way to make sure you’re doing the right thing to protect your local ecosystem.