While pets offer people companionship and love, unwelcome critters bring wildlife damage and offer people headaches and expensive repairs. Birds, mice, squirrels, raccoons, snakes, bats, opossums, and even bees can wreak havoc on your building and its resale value.
In fact, Georgia law requires that before a tenant puts a security deposit down and moves in to a rental, the landlord must give the tenant a complete list of all existing damages: including mice and other wildlife infestations. The tenant has thirty days to terminate the lease. If this is the case, the landlord is required to return the deposit. Anyone selling a house or commercial building is required to report all wildlife damages as well, and this law can make it very difficult to sell a house or building with a history of wildlife intrusion.
Just a few ways wildlife can damage your building:
- Gnaw through building materials and contents such as wires, wood, walls, and cloth such as curtains and clothing.
- Feces and urine (which can make you very sick) accumulate and saturate your insulation, plaster, and wood. This causes moisture damage and permeates the air with foul odors. Wildlife such as bats and birds have very sticky and somewhat runny feces, which can become difficult to remove when dry.
- Roof damage can occur if your wildlife problem involves intrusion by raccoons and squirrels. Raccoons can actually gain access to your building by literally ripping off old shingles until they create an entryway. Squirrels often follow raccoons as they now have easy access to the upper levels of your home. They will burrow through the ceiling in the harder to reach areas, tearing up the inner parts of your ceiling or roof as they dig, scratch, and gnaw.
Treat raccoons with caution. While these ring-tailed mammals are considered “cute”, they can actually be quite vicious if they feel threatened.
- Bees can cause structural damage to the exterior walls of buildings. They are also capable of building massive hives inside walls. This results in sticky honey buildup, constant annoying buzzing, and a justifiable fear of being stung.
Prevention and Control of Wildlife Damage
The best way to deal with wildlife damage is to prevent it from happening in the first place. Keep them out before they can come in. Some helpful ways to prevent and control wildlife damage are:
- Keep access areas of your home blocked off and sealed. Seal all cracks, holes, and other entry ways for wildlife such as mice, rats, snakes, bats, raccoons, and insects with something strong like cement, mortar, or caulk. A mixture of steel wool and caulk is a temporary fix. Plugging up entryways with materials like cloth will not help you. In fact, rodents will probably use it for bedding.
- Keep your garbage to a minimum with “smart” garbage bins that are complicated enough to keep clever raccoons out. Keep all food carefully stored away in a safe place.
- Inspect the roof to ensure it is secure and has no easy access entryways for wildlife.
- Check the sides of your home for holes or evidence of insects coming and going as they please.
- Set traps in vulnerable areas of your building to keep control of the population of any pesky wildlife that may venture inside.
If you need help with prevention and control of wildlife damage or want advice on how to treat an infestation in your home or commercial building, contact North Fulton Pest Solutions. Just call (770) 475-7419 to get help right away.