Whether you think they’re cute or creepy, raccoons don’t belong inside your home. Yet, like other wild animals, raccoons can end up in the nooks and crannies of a house, and they can cause problems beyond damaging property.
Raccoons are considered a primary carrier of Rabies in the United States, for instance. If you want your house to be free of outdoor critters, pay attention to these signs that might mean you have a raccoon in the attic.
Sounds Like a Raccoon in the Attic
Do you ever wake up in the morning wishing the upstairs neighbors would be a little quieter—only to remember that no one lives above you? No, there likely aren’t any ghosts in your attic. However, a raccoon might be making its nest in your home in preparation for her babies. Raccoons are large animals that move very quickly. Therefore, it’s no surprise that the noise they make is very noticeable.
If a raccoon is making herself at home in your house, it might sound like a toddler running around above you. No other wild animal native to North America is capable of making a similar stomping noise. If you’re still not convinced that your phantom attic noises are that of a raccoon, listen for vocal sounds. A mama raccoon is very vocal during and after her gestation period, and her babies make noise too.
With Spring Come Raccoons
Springtime isn’t only the season of blooming flowers and warmer weather. It’s also raccoon mating season. Raccoons aren’t as likely to invade your home when they’re not busy making a family. However, come springtime, female raccoons seek out warm and dry spaces where they can safely nest. A home’s attic is a perfect nesting space. It’s worth noting that when raccoons get comfortable where they set up home, they’re not willing to leave for months. A female raccoon’s gestation period lasts about 65 days. Typically, she stays nesting with her babies for about three months after their birth, until they are no longer frail and helpless. In total, the nesting process takes about five months. That’s why you should seek out a raccoon removal Baltimore service as soon as you confirm that these creatures did indeed invade your home.
Though they are a nuisance and a safety hazard to people, raccoons are smart. They are resourceful animals who make nests out of whatever materials they find.
If you have a house guest in the form of a raccoon, you’ll eventually notice evidence of a nest. Here are some materials to look out for:
- Leaves and twigs
- Ripped insulation
- Chipped wood
- Torn fabric
Raccoons like to get comfy. Not only do they bring some nesting materials with them, but they can literally gut an area of your home in order to get the materials they need. They can easily rip up your attic’s insulation and get into any clothing or storage bins you may have there.
It doesn’t take long for a raccoon to wreak havoc on your home. In fact, if it is scared and determined, a raccoon can cause structural damage to your attic in a matter of hours. Even if the animal feels safe in its nest, it will do damage to your home. For instance, it might tear up your walls and even rip out your roof shingles. It’s not uncommon for raccoons to rip apart your home’s structural beams.
Finally, what is a sure sign of wildlife in a home? Animal droppings. If you suspect a raccoon is sharing your home, look around for raccoon scat in and around your home. A raccoon’s version of civilization is setting up latrines where they live. That’s right—these animals don’t just poo in random places. They designate a space for a scat pile which is usually in the corner of a structure.
Did Your House Guest Leave?
Once you’re able to successfully kick out your raccoon in the attic, the tough work begins. For tips on renovating your attic and general home improvement, come back frequently to our blog. We promise to make your handyman work less of a headache.