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How to Trap a Squirrel - Trapping Tips

First of all, here are the three types of squirrel traps:
Cage Traps: This is the most common. The best size is 16x4x4 inches. If the trap is too small, the squirrel won't fit inside. If it's too big, the trip pan might not work, or the trapped squirrel will be able to gather enough running speed inside to injure itself. Plus, smaller traps fit better into and onto the places with higher trap success rate.
Repeater Traps: This is my favorite. Mount a trap right on the entry/exit hole a squirrel is using to get into a house, and this trap will catch all of them, one-by-one, as they go through the one-way door into the trap. Guaranteed to get them all, and to get the correct target squirrels you want to trap.
Lethal Body-Grip Traps: Some trappers use these - not a rat trap (that won't work, believe it or not), but a connibear style trap that you can mount over the entry/exit hole. These are dangerous, they only trap one squirrel at a time, they are very hard to set properly, and I see no reason to use one unless you really want to kill squirrels.
One-Way Exclusion Doors: These are great. Like a repeater trap, but with an open end. The squirrels can exit the building, but not get back in.

Under-soffit mount repeater - one-way exclusion door on hole - me and several caged squirrels - repeater trap on attic vent.

What bait do you put in the trap? It's pretty simple: use peanut butter. You can also use whole peanuts in the shell. You can use other things, like sunflower seeds, but it really doesn't matter. Bait is pointless compared to using the right trap, set in the right place.

Location: As stated, if it's squirrels in a building, set the traps right at, or on, the entry hole. If it's just squirrels out and about that you want to trap, you might consider preventative methods if possible, but nothing really replaces the effectiveness of trapping. Set traps in areas of shade and cover - you'll get higher catch rates, and the trapped squirrels need shade, or they'll quickly succumb to heat stroke and dehydration. Bolt traps into trees, on roofs, etc. That helps a lot.

If you don't live in Florida click my Nationwide Directory of Wildlife Professionals serving almost every town, in all 50 states.

Click the below photographs for examples of how to properly trap squirrels:

Cage traps in attic - not the right way to do it

Under soffit mount with nose cones traps every one

Repeater trap set on wall pipe gap leading into attic

Repeater trap set on gable vent, with blockade screen

How To Trap A Squirrel
Squirrels are excellent climbers, and seeing one bounding through the trees can be a majestic sight, but when these creatures are in an urban area they can cause some major problems. Squirrels will naturally nest in the upper branches of a tree, and their adaptability has meant that they will often be found in a domestic roof cavity or a barn. Although there are many products promising to repel squirrels from your property, they are rarely effective and the best option for those with an infestation will usually be to trap the animals.

Choosing Your Trap
The two main options for those considering a squirrel trap will be the cage trap that will catch the squirrel alive, and a lethal trap that will kill the squirrel. The lethal traps will be spring loaded and will close quickly around the head, neck or body of the animal, and will usually have to meet regulations about killing the animal quickly and humanely. The other option will be the live trap, which can be placed anywhere that squirrels are likely to scamper along. These can be particularly effective in a roof cavity where the squirrels will generally traverse the area using the roof beams.

Finding The Best Bait For The Trap
Choosing bait for a squirrel trap will often be more about finding things that will only attract a squirrel, rather than about choosing bait that will attract squirrels and many other animals. The fondness that squirrels have for nuts has been well documented in many movies and TV shows, and this is certainly accurate, but sweetened nut products prove to be especially successful. Some people will use peanut butter or a small piece of a Snickers candy bar to bait the traps, which will usually be enough to attract the squirrel.

Getting The Right Location For Placing Your Squirrel Trap
One of the most difficult things that many amateur trappers will have a problem with is finding the right location for the trap. If the squirrel infestation is in your roof space, then placing it on a regularly used beam near to the hole through which the animal accesses the space can be especially effective, and these can be identified by the volume of feces to be found on and around it. Otherwise, it can often require a significant amount of observation to see the habits of the animals and to find where it will go on a regular basis.

Handling Any Squirrels That You Catch
The most important thing when handling any squirrels in your trap is to ensure that the contact between the squirrel and yourself is minimal. For those using live traps, make sure you wear gloves and don’t put your fingers too close to the cage where the squirrel can bite or scratch them. Squirrels do carry diseases, and it is still important to take the right precautions. For those using fatal traps, make sure you handle the carcass wearing rubber gloves, and try and make sure that any contact is kept to a minimum. It is also best to wash your hands or use an alcohol gel as soon as possible afterwards to prevent contamination from the squirrel carcass.

Removing The Squirrel
In some states there will be regulations about the release of squirrels, and there will be specific officials that any animals should be taken to. It is possible that the local laws will mean any trapped squirrels will have to be euthanized. In other cases, most people will simply return the animal to a rural wooded area at least ten miles from property to ensure the animal cannot find its way back.

PHOTOS: For great pictures of squirrel trapping and removal, click on my: Squirrel Photographs gallery.

Here is a complete list of my squirrel control pages:
Baby Squirrels in the Wall
Squirrel in the Chimney
How to Get Squirrels Out of Your Attic
How to Get Rid of Squirrels in the Attic
Squirrels Chew on Your Home
Squirrel Control
How to Get a Squirrel Out of the Wall
How to Get Rid of Squirrels
How to Keep Squirrels Away from House
How to Kill Squirrels
How to Catch a Squirrel

How To Trap Squirrels Out Of The Attic - If you take a look at all the rooms in your home you will soon see why the attic is seen by squirrels as the perfect hiding place. It is dry, dark and in the winter it keeps squirrels warm from the weather outside. It probably has an entry point where the squirrel came in from and there are no predators there to harm it. Even if the house is full of people, not too many people frequent the attic every day. So as you can see there are not many negatives about the attic for a squirrel, and that means that you have to learn to get squirrels out of the attic so that they do not damage the wires and the insulation in your home.

This is how to get squirrels out of the attic with traps: The best way, by far, is to mount a repeater trap or a one-way exclusion door right on the entry/exit hole. That guarantees that you get all the squirrels, and all the target squirrels. Problem solved.

If that's not an option, use 16x4x4 size cage traps, and mount them on the roof, fascia boards, or even access trees. You should use a trap with the right bait, and the right bait is peanut butter, with whole peanuts in the shell. The reason why peanut butter is better than using nuts is that the smell is stronger than the one other bait may emit and that means that it is more likely to attract the squirrel. It is also a sticky kind of bait so the squirrel cannot take it without actually getting trapped inside. The squirrel will try to get the peanut butter and because of its consistency it will get trapped.

How Much Damage Can A Squirrel Trap Do To Fingers? - When handling any sort of trap you should be careful because traps can cause some damage to your fingers and other body parts. If you want to know how much damage can a squirrel trap do to fingers, then you first have to check the type of trap you are talking about. Traps that are lethal usually will cause a lot more damage if they are triggered and your fingers are caught. The reason for that is that they are meant to kill the squirrel in a fast manner; some people have even broken fingers because they have triggered the trap. How much damage can a squirrel trap do to fingers if it is a non-lethal one or otherwise called a live trap? Surprisingly the answer is still a good amount of damage. The trigger will pop a door close and it has to do it fast otherwise the squirrel could escape. If you have your finger anywhere near that door there is a chance that they can get really hurt. It is true that the damage will probably be a lot less than that of traps that are designed to kill the squirrel right away, but that does not mean it does not hurt.

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