It is baby time in nature. Spring is a time of birth as the world around us blooms. Mother nature is active as animals come out of hibernation and begin to reproduce. From April to June you may see more nuisance wildlife active at dusk and dawn, foraging for food to nourish themselves or feed their new offspring.
What animals are having their young right now?
Skunks, opossum, raccoons, and squirrels are having their young during these late spring and early summer months. The Indiana Department of Natural Resources shares some tips for dealing with baby wildlife:
- Adult animals rarely abandon their young. Parents often leave young unattended for long periods to gather food and may only return a few times a day. A nest or den without a parent present does not necessarily mean that the young have been abandoned.
- Do not hover to see if a parent has come back to its young. An adult animal will not return if people or pets are close to the nest or den. Give the young space and only check back periodically. If you can’t tell if a parent has checked on a nest, place straw or grass over the nest and return later to see if it has been disturbed.
- Young wildlife should not be handled. Human scent is unlikely to cause parents to abandon their young; however, handling young wildlife and disturbance of a nest can alert predators to the young animal’s presence. Young may also carry disease or parasites they can transfer to people or pets and are capable of biting or scratching.
When wildlife young are left to their own devices, and the mother has not been located, we cannot leave the young orphaned or abandoned. We contact local rehabilitators who assess the situation and determine the best course of action.
What are wildlife rehabilitators?
According to the National Wildlife Rehabilitators Association,
Wildlife rehabilitation aims to provide professional care to sick, injured, and orphaned wild animals so, ultimately, they can be returned to their natural habitat. Wild animals that sustain injuries or illnesses preventing them from living successfully in the wild usually are euthanized (have their suffering ended humanely). Occasionally, individual animals that have recovered from their injuries but cannot survive in the wild are placed in educational facilities.
Wildlife rehabilitation is not an attempt to turn wild animals into pets. Patients are held in captivity only until able to live independently in the wild. Fear of humans is a necessary survival trait for wild animals, and every effort is made to minimize human contact and prevent the taming of rehabilitation patients. Often wildlife rehabilitation is an elaborate and time-consuming process.
The article continues to say,
Because of their training, wildlife rehabilitators can help concerned people decide whether an animal truly needs help. Young birds and mammals should be returned to their families if possible; even well-trained rehabilitators are not equivalent replacements for biological parents. Rehabilitators can provide instructions on how to reunite wildlife families, keeping the safety of the animals and the rescuers in mind, and suggest humane, long-term solutions when conflicts arise between humans and their wild neighbors.
What can I do to prevent wildlife from nesting in or around my home?
As with most pests or nuisance wildlife interactions, prevention and exclusion are the best methods. Here are a few tips from the Indiana Department of Natural Resources:
- Pick up dog and cat food at night and keep bird feeders out of the reach of wild animals or bring in birdfeeders at night.
- Install a commercial chimney cap made of sheet metal and a heavy screen. Repair soffits to prevent access to attics and install strong, metal vent covers.
- Prune tree limbs at least 10 feet away from the roof.
- Buy heavy metal garbage cans with lockable lids; otherwise, keep garbage cans indoors as much as possible.
- Install metal skirting around the bottoms of decks.
- Provide shelter structures for fish in ornamental ponds and water gardens; cover the pond during the night with metal screening.
Removing unwanted pests and wildlife in your home or business is only a temporary solution. We want to provide you with a permanent solution. Sealing up all entry points is key to successful eradication.
Accurate Pest Control and Nuisance Wildlife have kept residential and commercial structures pest-free and healthy throughout the Capital Region. We have developed AccuShield, and a series of exclusion systems based on your pest or wildlife problems. Contact us for a free inspection and estimate.
Do not attempt to handle wildlife.
When we are called to a site and either find a pregnant animal or a newborn baby, we know that removal and care are tricky. We prefer not to eradicate pregnant wildlife or newborn babies, but if it is necessary given the situation, we will release the animals to the care of a wildlife Rehabilitator.
Please do not attempt to remove the wildlife yourself. Our technicians are highly trained and licensed by New York State. We never want our customers putting themselves in harm’s way to climb a ladder or squeeze through an attic hatch.
Contact us for an inspection of your home and property. We don’t charge for the inspection, and when we are done, you will have an understanding of what is going on with the wildlife and a game plan to correct the situation.