How to Get Rid of Ground Squirrels & Prevent their Return


Ground squirrels are gnawing mammals such as the classic tree squirrels, pocket gophers, voles, muskrats, mice, chipmunks and rats. These rodents get the name from spending 90 percent of their lifetime below ground and hibernating up to 250 days per year. Many build burrows under the ground or inside hallow trees while others build water dams and dens to live in during the colder winter months, but it all depends on the species.

Some unlucky homeowners get the horrible pleasure of having ground squirrels as unwanted house guest. This is why so many people are trying to learn new ways to rid these creatures from their home and prevent them from coming back.

If you are one of those unlucky people, trying to get rid of these rodents some of the methods you will learn here are worth trying. After all, some of these ground squirrels can carry diseases that are harmful to human health and can wreak havoc in homes to the potent a construction work will need to be hired to make house repairs.

Why you should get rid of ground squirrels as soon as you see them in your yard

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Where do ground squirrels prefer to live?

Ground squirrels mostly love living in woodland areas deep within the forest or within wetlands and fields. If your home is in forest-like areas or close to wetland areas or tall fields this could be the reason why you are dealing with ground squirrel issues, to begin with. Thankfully, there are methods you can take to keep them out of your home and even away from your yard, but first, you need to know what they mainly feast on to fill their little bellies.

What do ground squirrels eat?

Bountiful amounts of seeds, nuts from nut trees, bushes loaded with berries and areas where the grass is tall and attracts insects and other creatures is where you will find ground squirrels eating. Squirrels love snacking on nuts, seeds, berries and insects. Ground squirrels also love dinning in vegetable and fruit gardens too where produce is plentiful because it is much easier for them to get their little tiny paws on and eat up quickly. If there is a source of food, water and shelter around your yard, you can almost bet they will make their home in your home. The only way to keep them away for sure is to remove the food sources, keep yards well mowed and raked up, bushes well-trimmed and dead trees removed from your property.

What are prevention methods to keep ground squirrels away?

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  • Placing trash bags in sealed up trash containers or bins with locks.
  • Spraying ground squirrel repellent along your property line.
  • Get a few farm cats.
  • Spray bobcat or coyote urine around your yard.
  • Keep dining areas outside clean.
  • Use ground squirrel traps to physically capture the rodents from your property so you can relocate them elsewhere.
  • Install ultrasonic rodent devices within your home and outside in your yard.
  • Place tall fencing or netting around gardens or bushes you don’t want them eating.
  • Use motion sensor water sprinklers to scare them away with water.
  • Use poison rodent bait to kill them off.
  • Seal up cracks and holes around your home along windows, doors, crawl spaces, garages and attics.
  • Plant mint plants around your home to repel the ground squirrels away.
  • Add ground cayenne peppers to bird feeders to prevent ground squirrels from eating the bird seed.
  • Place ground squirrel feeders along your property line to keep them from your home, but feasting at a distance.
  • Spray a cayenne pepper solution around the foundation of your home to keep the squirrels away.
  • Install a sprinkler system outside with motion sensors to deter the rodents.
  • Stalk wood inside woodsheds or garages as soon as it is delivered to prevent the rodents from building homes within it.

What can I do if ground squirrels are building in my home?

The best thing you can do when ground squirrels are building their home inside your home is call the exterminator or a professional who is skilled at removing squirrels properly. Trying to do this job yourself can be daunting and even get you sick since some of these rodents carry harmful bacteria and diseases in their droppings that can cause you to become seriously ill.

However, once the nest is gone it is important to go to that area wearing a mask and some gloves and clean it up properly using bleach and removing any urine or fecal soaked materials left behind. If these creatures have built homes within the walls, you may need to call in some contractors to help you take down the drywall, remove old insulation, and make any repairs to wooden structures that might need repairing due to the rodents chewing away.

You may even discover electrical work needs to be done too since rodents love chewing wiring also, which by the way when left within the walls chewed could potentially start a house fire. There is nothing worse than having a house fire all because rodents chewed electrical work and sparked a flame. This is why it is also important to deal with a ground squirrel situation that is infesting your home as soon as you notice it. Some of the signs you can look for are chewing sounds or sound of rodents running around within your walls, which you will definitely be able to hear if you do have them invading your space.

Some Things to Keep in Mind with Getting Rid of Ground Squirrels

When it comes to ground squirrels, they are typically happy wooden forest creatures that are non-aggressive unless they feel threatened in some way. Typically, ground squirrels will stay away when yards are kept clean, there are no bird feeders are around and homes are well sealed up with no holes, cracks or entrance points to get in through to get into the house.

In fact, it is more common to see ground squirrels getting into old farm homes and building their homes inside of those since farmhouses and even barns are much easier to get into. Making sure crawl spaces are blocked off near their entrance points goes along ways from preventing rodent invasions within your homes too. After all, your home is your home and it needs to be kept safe and rodent free for your health and the tiny ground like creatures.

Now that you know how to get rid of ground squirrels, let us know how what your experience is with the strategies and tips above in the comments below.

Categorized as Squirrels

By David Jackson

I enjoy learning about new pest control strategies and sharing what I learn at I aim to create a reliable resource for people dealing with all sorts of pest issues.