Not only do rural homeowners need to contend with the same rodents as city dwellers, such as rats and mice, but they also have to contend with their larger relative—the squirrel. While squirrels are cute rodents and can be fun to watch when they attempt to steal birdseed from your feeders, they can also be destructive to your home if they get into the attic or inside of your walls and start chewing on the electrical wiring. If you've started seeing a lot of squirrels around your home and want to protect it from potentially being damaged, then consider this information about these furry critters.

Not All Squirrel Species Are Created Equal

Rural areas with squirrels tend to have a variety of different species. For example, gray squirrels are the larger gray-colored squirrels you see running around in trees and across aerial power lines. This species of squirrel spends most of its time high up in the trees or running around gathering up food. Typically, gray squirrels will avoid invading homes, and the only damage they do is digging holes in the yard to hide their nuts and acorns.

Alternatively, ground squirrels are the smaller brown variety with thinner hair on their tails. Ground squirrels don't live in trees; instead, they take up shelter in burrows located underground. Unfortunately, this means they tunnel around like gophers and can seriously damage the foundation of your home if they are allowed to do so.

Controlling the Squirrel Population Depends on the Species of Squirrels Present

In order to control the squirrel problem on your property, first, you need to identify the squirrel species that are causing the problem. If you have ground squirrels, then you can exterminate them similarly to how rats and gophers are exterminated. You can set traps and use species-specific rodenticides to kill them. And, if you have ground squirrel problems, then you absolutely need to deal with them because they are very destructive.

Alternatively, if you have gray squirrels, then they may be protected by law, and it may be illegal for you to poison or trap them. A quick call to your local county office of agriculture will answer the question.

Professional Rodent Control Is Sometimes Necessary for Squirrel Problems

Lastly, it's important to note squirrel populations can quickly increase, and once a group of them gets too big, it's better to call in a pest control professional to handle the problem for you. If you have ground squirrels, then they will know exactly what rodenticide or traps work well in your area. If you have gray squirrels, then they will know what can legally be done to remove them from your property.

For more information, call a rodent control team.