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How to get rid of grey squirrels

Information, facts and resources to help you deal with an infestation of grey squirrels and, if the worst happens, how to destroy the grey squirrels and prevent this household pests return.


Grey Squirrels

What does a grey squirrel look like?

grey squirrels

Grey Squirrels

Grey Squirrel Description

  • The adult grey squirrel weighs 500g and is approximately 25cm long, with a tail of similar length.
  • The winter coat of the grey squirrel is grey with a white underside.
  • The summer coat of the grey squirrel is brownish grey and shorter.

Where do grey squirrels live?

  • Grey squirrels build their nests in the forks or hollows of trees, using twigs, leaves and grass.
  • Grey Squirrels occasionally make their nests in the roof spaces of houses.
  • Grey Squirrels retire to their nests during wet or cold weather, but remain active throughout the year.

What are the signs of grey squirrel infestation?

  • Sightings of Grey Squirrels.
  • Grey Squirrels may be seen running along the tops of fences.
  • Grey Squirrels may be seen crossing open spaces such as lawns.

What do grey squirrels eat?

  • Grey squirrels eat nuts, grain, fruit, vegetables, eggs, tree bark and other plant materiel.
  • Grey squirrels are frequently found in parks and open spaces where they have learned to eat bread fed to them by humans.

Why must grey squirrels be controlled?

  • Damage to buildings:

  • Squirrels usually enter the roof spaces of buildings by climbing or jumping from nearby trees.
  • Once inside Grey Squirrels will tear up insulating material to build their nests.
  • Grey Squirrels will gnaw woodwork, plastic piping and electric wiring, which could lead to floods or fires.
  • Grey Squirrels also contaminate water tanks with their droppings.

  • Damage within gardens:

  • Grey Squirrels will often gnaw on the bark of trees causing considerable damage.
  • Grey Squirrels will also take cultivated fruit and vegetables, dig up plants and bulbs, and dig holes in lawns.
  • Grey Squirrels often raid the nests of small birds to steal eggs and young.

How can I get rid of grey squirrels?

  • The most effective method to control grey squirrels is to physically prevent entry to the roof space by blocking up gaps and entrance holes that are being used or might be used by the squirrels.
  • Loose or damaged soffits should be replaced, and any remaining gaps should be plugged with tightly wedged wire mesh to prevent the squirrels access.
  • All proofing work should be carried out when squirrels are out of the roof space.

How can I prevent grey squirrels from returning?

  • Don't encourage grey squirrels with any form of feeding.
  • The most effective method to control grey squirrels is to physically prevent entry to the roof space by blocking up gaps and entrance holes that are being used or might be used by the squirrels.
  • Loose or damaged soffits should be replaced, and any remaining gaps should be plugged with tightly wedged wire mesh to prevent the squirrels access.
  • All proofing work should be carried out when squirrels are out of the roof space.
  • Reposition bird tables and bird feeders to prevent grey squirrels access to this free source of food.
  • Fit grey squirrel proof tables and feeders.
  • Do not feed the grey squirrels and prevent their access to easy sources of food.

Grey Squirrel Poisons and Grey Squirrel Pesticides

  • Legislation is very specific regarding this subject.
  • Warfarin may be used to poison squirrels in roof spaces, providing the formulation used is approved for this specific purpose.
  • Other poisons and Warfarin formulations for the control of rats and mice must not be used.
  • It should be noted that if poisoned, squirrels may die in inaccessible corners of the roof space. This will make it very difficult to recover the squirrel body and may create a fly nuisance or unpleasant odours.
  • When using pesticides always follow the instructions on the label.
  • Read and follow the instructions on the product label precisely. Use only products that state on the label that it may be used to control grey squirrels.
  • Remember, pesticides can be poisonous to children and pets. After use store container and contents away from children, or dispose of empty container safely.

The "Green Option" - Environmentally friendly control of Grey Squirrels

  • It is possible to trap grey squirrels by using cages.
  • Legislation is very specific regarding this subject.
  • This is to prevent any unnecessary suffering to the squirrel.
  • This method of dealing with squirrels should not be undertaken by inexperienced people.
  • Reposition bird tables and bird feeders to prevent grey squirrels access to this free source of food.
  • Fit grey squirrel proof tables and feeders.
  • Do not feed the grey squirrels and prevent their access to easy sources of food.

Grey Squirrels : Household Pests

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