Chipmunk troubles

July 14, 2012

I was just contemplating a ten minute break between articles sitting in the chair on the little deck in the back yard when I discovered it was already occupied by a “close” neighbor.

A Chipmunk that has moved in under the deck out there decided that was a perfectly good spot to get some sun this afternoon.

We have had an abundance of those busy little critters around the house this summer.

Another one who frequents the front yard and regularly visits the feeders looking for extra goodies has engineered a probably very extensive tunnel system under the concrete in our crawl space.  This is not a good thing.

One of his “doors” is right next to our front door unfortunately and our attempts to “evict” him so far haven’t even slowed him down.

We tried filling in the opening. He (or she) had it opened back up within minutes as soon as we came back inside.  I tried pouring a little bit of bleach in his “doorway.” At first I thought that may have done the trick, but as soon as the odor went away the next day, he was back again, and I really didn’t think more of the same would be good for the environment.

When he excavates, he piles the dirt very neatly on the cement patio in front of the entry door. We sweep it away and fill in the hole – he comes back and opens it up again. Doesn’t he realize we are bigger and supposedly smarter than him?

Someone told me to put steel wool in the opening, and I am planning to try that one too, but I think he will probably just move the door over a few inches to circumvent that obstacle.

Jack has suggested the pellet gun as a solution to the problem. So far I haven’t agreed to that one. After all they are very cute creatures and pretty entertaining as well.

The trouble is they can cause a lot of damage to patios, foundations, wiring and are even known to help themselves to the goodies in a garden until they are all gone. A couple of years ago we had one who emptied the bird feeders pretty regularly. He would hide the seeds under the ramp in front of our storage barn. Every so often Jack would lift it up, collect the seeds and put them back in the feeder.

Guess that could be called the “cycle of life”…

I even “googled” humane ways to get rid of chipmunks and came up with some pretty unique solutions including a battery operated movable garden owl, red fox urine (Yuck), a chipmunk trap, an ultrasonic pest repeller, mothballs, hot pepper wax and even used kitty litter in or around the hole.

Now I have to figure out what I will try next. Maybe I will “borrow” some kitty litter from Lisa’s house since we don’t have any here anymore.

I am open to suggestions readers…

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