Squirrel Problems | How to Catch a Squirrel | Home Made Traps

Squirrel Problems | How to Catch a Squirrel | Home Made Traps

How to identify a squirrel problem?

Following are some signs that you’ve a squirrel problem at your residence:

1. Strange noises around your home

If paying attention, there are fair chances that you’ll hear a squirrel before any visual evidence, especially during the winters or rainy months.

2. Damage around your home

It is difficult to visualize whether squirrels have damaged your home. Take a peek in the outside areas and you may notice the following which confirms the presence of a squirrel:-

  1. Teeth marks in wires, wood, and walls
  2. Nests in your home
  3. Wood chips around the house.

3. Squirrel Droppings in your garage or attic

These are a great indicator of the presence and be sure to check for the same.

4. Squirrel footprints

You will see footprints of squirrels, especially in wet places around your home.

How to catch a squirrel

You could follow the following steps to accomplish the same.

1. Select a suitable live squirrel Trap

A live trap should be large enough so that the entire squirrel can fit inside the trap before. The squirrel traps are available in a variety of sizes. Because of this, it is advisable to know about the squirrel initially.

Once you know the size, set up the trap and wait. Most of the live squirrel traps come in One-door variation or Two-door variation doors.

A brief description of both the variations is mentioned below:

1-Door Variant

This is the traditional trap and is favored by professional trappers. It allows you to place the bait beyond the trigger plate, attracting the squirrel to walk further into the trap.

2-Door Variant

It provides two entry points for better and optimized results. It offers you choices. This could be used as a 1-Door variant as well. The ability to see through the trap provides confidence for more cautious animals.

Therefore, for better results and high chances of trapping the squirrel, it is advisable to use 2-Door Variants.

2. Determine Trap Placement

Trap placement is an important step to accomplish the task. Place the trap on a flat surface along the squirrel’s travel path. Great trap locations include the following:

  1. Along a wall in the shed
  2. In front of an entryway
  3. Tree’s base
  4. A spot on your roof accessible by tree or power lines

Tip: Unlike many animals, squirrels are found in the open areas as they’re comfortable there. Place them away from low-lying bushes or shrubs.

3. Select and Position Bait

One might think that it’s the simplest step. But, follow the below mentioned critical guidelines when baiting your trap to get better results:

Select bait that squirrels can’t steal: Spread the peanut butter directly onto the trigger plate. When using a solid bait, make sure it’s larger than the mesh openings of the trap-unshelled peanuts work well.

Properly position the bait :Position the bait so that there isn’t any possibility for the squirrel to escape.

4. Set your trap

Set the trap at the desired placement spot.

5. Check on your trap often

It is inhumane to leave an animal trapped inside a trap for a long time because it can quickly grow thirsty, anxious, or hungry.

Check the trap frequently so that the squirrel is not trapped for long.

  1. Follow some precautionary steps for your safety. Touch the squirrel inside the trap using gloves to ensure that you’re not in direct contact with the animal. A squirrel bite may lead to an injury.
  2. After the release of the squirrel, disinfect the trap to prevent the spreading of disease. Disinfect is using a bleach solution.

How to Keep Squirrels Out

1. Reduce attractants

Clean up fallen birdseed, nuts, etc. remove garbage; replace all the squirrel-attracting things at once as a preventive step.

2. Limit accessibility

Trim the tree branches within 10 feet of your home or feeders; cover nearby power lines with plastic tubing; install a chimney cap; repair broken vents/screens and holes in your home’s exterior.

3. Use squirrel repellents

Regularly apply squirrel repellents to repel squirrels. Squirrels could also be frightened away with an electronic repellent.

There are no poison baits in the market that squirrel will eat and die, except Ditrac Ground Squirrel Bait which is only made to control the Californian Ground Squirrel. Typical rodent control bait for mice and rats won’t work against squirrels.

Homemade Squirrel Traps

The materials required to prepare these homemade squirrel traps are 

  1. Three pieces of PVC plastic drain pipe
  2. One 45 degrees elbow
  3. One PVC Cleanout plug
  4. Once PVC adapter fitting (threaded from one end for the cleanout plug above)
  5. One PVC coupling fitting
  6. One PVC pipe cap
  7. Two machine screws, zinc or stainless steel
  8. Four nuts to match the screws
  9. Two washers
  10. Two wing nuts
  11. One adjustable 2-foot bungee cord
  12. One can of spray cooking oil 
  13. One small jar of peanut butter

The tool required is just a power drill.


  1. Drill holes in one of the pipes. The drilled pipe will act as the base of the trap.
  1. Assemble the trap base: Attach the PVC adapter fitting to one end of the base pipe and carefully screw the cleanout plug into the threaded section of the adapter fitting.
  1. Assemble the top of the squirrel trap:  On the end of the top pipe with two holes, reach inside the pipe and push one machine screw through each of the holes with their head inside the pipe. Place a washer outside on each of the screws, screw two nuts on each screw, and screw one wing nut on each screw.
  1. Assemble and bait the trap: The remaining pipe is the middle of the trap. Insert one end of the middle pipe into the open end of the PVC coupling fitting on the top pipe and the other end of the PVC 45-degree elbow on the base pipe. The fully assembled trap will resemble a hockey stick. Spray a light coating of cooking oil on the inside of the top and middle pipe which will act as a lubricant. Now put peanut butter inside the top pipe which is your bait.
  1. Select a location and place the trap and wait. Once the squirrel is caught, release it in an open location.


There are several species of squirrel, but tree squirrels are the most common nuisance for homeowners because they inhabit attics and garages and cause damage. They are famous for the shortage of electric power transformers due to their activities around power lines.

They’re usually discovered because they make a lot of noise in the area they inhabit. The large population and decreasing natural habitat is the reason why the squirrels cause to seek shelter in houses. 

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