Unless you live in a very urbanized environment chances are that you will encounter some wild animals from time to time, sometimes maybe even too close for comfort. From the very small to the very large, wild animals are a nuisance if they try to invade homes, searching for food or shelter. And people have been very creative in developing ways in which to stop them.
Prevention is key, as once a wild animal gets inside it can be both a lot more complicated to get them out and potentially dangerous for the people living there. From the very obvious – such as a bear or alligator roaming in the backyard to the spooky and unpleasant bat that is hiding in a dark corner – a lot of these problems require a careful and thoughtful approach.
Store Food Appropriately
One of the most common, if not the most common reasons for animals to come where people live is to search for food. The smells, the sight, and overall bountifulness of nutrients humans keep in and around their homes is a great magnet for various feral beasts. After all, sharing an excess of food is how some wild animals became domesticated. Expecting their (still) wild cousins to act differently would be foolish.
It is, therefore, imperative that all food be stored away properly. Perishables should be placed in refrigerators or cellars, while dry foods and similar can go into cabinets or baskets. After cooking and eating everything should be cleaned so as not to leave crumbs or small pieces for insects to eat on. Because once small animals like ants or cockroaches show up – it’s only a matter of time before something bigger gets there.
Watch the Attic
Another general piece of advice is to regularly check out those parts of your property that are otherwise uninhabited. One should look at the attic for uninvited guests because if you want to get rid of bats you first need to locate them. Bats are pretty much silent and will only appear at night so it’s rather difficult to notice them by chance, but they are a health hazard nonetheless and are best kept away from where you live.
Other wild animals may also settle in places such as the attic or roof construction. Owls, various small birds, and especially rodents find it a very pleasant environment for them and their families. A few of them may be cute and harmless in smaller numbers, though get enough of them together and you won’t be able to sleep at night or be able to enjoy your yard.
Securing the Fence
Bigger animals have long been warded off by fences. Wood, stone, or even concrete and steel are all obstacles that keep larger beasts at bay. They are routinely used in securing roads and are a favorite of farmers if they have crops or poultry that needs to be kept safe. They work, there is no going around it.
Though they must also be made properly. Some areas only permit certain materials or a certain height for fences, while at other times it is a question of cost vs effectiveness. Whatever the situation, a fence should be sturdy and dug into the ground at least a few inches to avert anything trying to go under it.
Electric fences are gaining popularity throughout the world, mostly for keeping grazing animals inside a certain area, though they can be used inversely – to keep something out too. A small current is enough to irritate animals, but not harm them.
Ward Off, Don’t Kill
It is best if a wild animal doesn’t even come close to your property, let alone settle on it. And to do this the best approach is to develop a system of warding them off. Traditionally, this was done by having a house pet that doubles as a guard.
Dogs are excellent at keeping away larger animals, or even whole packs or herds, as they are extremely territorial. Cats are much more subtle and harder to control, but they will be able to get into those nooks and crannies where a dog simply cannot.
Giving a flock of wild birds an eviction notice probably won’t do much in terms of getting them off your property, but getting in a specialist who they understand, such as a cat, is probably going to get them moving. Wild animals have their place in nature and are perfectly fine living there, so even if they would appreciate the warmth of your home and the pie on your window – there is no need for them to be around you unless you want to.