Raccoons raid garbage cans and use structures such as chimneys, attics, and decks for their dens. They mate in January and February, which leads to a litter of three to six young raccoons that becomes active outside of the den in May or June. The family stays together for about a year. These nocturnal pests can be a real nuisance.
When removing or excluding raccoons in the spring and summer, remember that young might also be present and no exclusion should be done until all of them have been removed.
Skunks are part of the weasel family, and their digging behaviors can cause serious damage, especially to lawns. The obvious odor they spray in self-defense also makes them a major nuisance. These nocturnal animals mate in late winter and usually have one litter per year containing as many as 10 young.
Typically, skunks don’t tip over garbage cans foraging for food, like racoons, but they may still need to be removed because of their nesting habits or damage caused by digging. Skunks can be trapped and excluded similarly to raccoons.
The most common pest we encounter is the gray squirrel. They commonly enter attics and garages to store food and find shelter. Along with other rodents, they can gnaw on structural elements, are noisy when inside the structure, harbor pathogens, and cause damage.
These pests have two litters per year and are most active in the morning and late afternoon. Determining squirrel entry points is key to elimination and prevention.