Monday, August 12, 2013

Keep the raccoons away

OK, so it’s bad enough trying to keep up with the honey-do list but add to it going head-to-head with the animal kingdom, and I’m at my limit. The raccoon, feisty and persistent nighttime renegade has to be outsmarted with some good old common sense. We have raccoons in our area that continually look for food and shelter by way of our roof and any food left out.

We’ve had our roof fixed twice in the last three years because of these raccoons who have torn away shingles and dug into the wood, and we are starting to outsmart them.

Here are some preventative measures.

1. Keep trees such as evergreens and bushes that are right next to the house trimmed below the roof line. Yes they can crawl up the wall but it’s not as easy as climbing the tree and it’s an easy fix. (Well, as easy as can be expected with a two-story house.)

 2. Place a light in the location they are trying to use as a pathway or trying to inhabit. (I'm not sure this helps all that much, but something is better than nothing.)

3. Place mothballs in the attic. (In my research online, some people have said the mothballs are too strong a smell and they had to retrieve them one by one in the attic to get rid of the smell.) We put them in a couple large cloth bags with a rope tied to the bag so we could easily retrieve them if the smell was too strong.

4. Check the roof for damage. I couldn’t see the one side of our roof without getting on a ladder and I didn’t have a long enough ladder and, I really don’t like heights. So I attached a small video camera to a tripod and then attached that to an extension poll. (See video below.)

By all means call a professional if they keep coming back or if they are getting into the house. Keep in mind they can be dangerous, so don't go out and confront them. Good luck and I will keep you posted on our progress with the critters.