Virginian Red Squirrel

Squirrel Trapping in Southwestern Virginia

Why Squirrel Trapping?

Squirrel trapping in southwestern Virginia can be a bit different than in other areas. The squirrel population may be different, and the local laws and regulations regarding trapping should be checked before attempting to trap squirrels in southwestern Virginia.

Different Types of Traps

There are a variety of different types of traps available for trapping squirrels. Some popular options include

  • Live traps: These traps capture the squirrel alive, allowing you to release them into the wild elsewhere. These traps come in a variety of shapes and sizes, from small box traps to large cage traps.
  • Kill traps: These traps are designed to kill the squirrel quickly and humanely. These traps can be triggered by the squirrel stepping on a pedal or by a spring-loaded mechanism.
  • Snares: Snares are loops of wire or cable that are placed around the squirrel’s neck or body, causing the animal to be caught. Snares can be baited or unbaited.
  • Glue traps: These traps use a strong adhesive to keep the squirrel in place. These traps are not recommended as they can cause injury to the squirrel and can be inhumane.
Squirrel Trap made to catch squirrels in the attic here in SWVA

Bait Selection

The type of bait you use can greatly affect your chances of catching a squirrel. Some popular baits include:

  • Peanuts: Squirrels love peanuts and they can be a very effective bait. They are also easy to find and relatively inexpensive.
  • Sunflower seeds: Sunflower seeds are another popular bait for squirrels. They are high in fat and protein, making them a great choice for baiting squirrel traps.
  • Corn: Squirrels love corn, and it can be a great bait for trapping squirrels. It is also readily available and inexpensive.
  • Apple slices: Squirrels also enjoy eating apples. Fresh apple slices can be used as a bait to trap squirrels.
Corn used as bait for squirrel trapping here in Southwest Virginia

Setting the Trap

Once you have selected your trap and bait, it’s time to set the trap. Here are a few tips for setting your trap:

  • Place the trap near a food source or a known squirrel activity area.
  • Make sure the trap is stable and will not tip over.
  • Cover the trap with foliage or other materials to make it less visible.
  • Check the trap regularly to ensure it is in good working order and to remove any trapped squirrels.
Squirrel Trap set up near the entrance to the roof

Squirrel Trapping Safety Precautions

When trapping squirrels, it’s important to take safety precautions. Here are a few tips to keep in mind:

  • Always wear gloves when handling traps or bait.
  • Keep children and pets away from the traps.
  • Be cautious when releasing trapped squirrels, as they may be scared and aggressive.
  • Follow all local laws and regulations regarding trapping squirrels.
Safety gear for safely trapping squirrels

Relocating Trapped Squirrels in Southern Virginia

If you are using a live trap, it’s important to consider where you will release the trapped squirrel. Here are a few tips for relocating squirrels:

  • Release the squirrel at least five miles away from where it was captured.
  • Release the squirrel in a wooded area with plenty of food and shelter.
  • Release the squirrel during the daylight hours.
  • Do not release the squirrel in an area with a high population of squirrels, as it may compete for resources.

Frequently Asked Squirrel Trapping Questions

The answer is yes, they can. Squirrels are intelligent creatures and have quickly learned the dangers associated with traps and other pest control strategies. Over time, they can develop an instinctual wariness or even an aversion to certain types of traps. Additionally, squirrels are very good at recognizing danger and will often run away after a few encounters with traps.

The amount of time it takes to trap a squirrel depends on the type of trap being used. A baited snare, for example, may take just a few moments for a squirrel to step into. However, box-type traps that feature a one-way opening require more patience and skill, as the squirrel must attempt to be lured inside before the door shuts behind them. Generally speaking, box-type traps can take up to 30 minutes or more to catch a squirrel.

Fortunately, there are many different strategies for trapping squirrels that can reduce the chances of them avoiding the trap. For instance, using a bait that is a natural part of the squirrel’s diet, such as nuts or seeds, can increase the effectiveness of the trap. Also, using multiple traps in the same area can create the illusion that none of them pose any real danger, thus increasing the likelihood of a successful capture.

Tips for Successful Trapping

When attempting to trap squirrels, it’s important to consider the size of the trap. Using a trap that is too large can make it difficult for the squirrel to get inside, while a trap that is too small may make it easy for them to escape. Furthermore, traps with a one-way door should always be placed in an area that allows them to lastly reach their destination. Additionally, it’s important to check the traps regularly for signs of tampering or damage, and to cover the trap with foliage or other materials to make it less visible.

Hiring a Professional

If you are unable to trap the squirrels yourself or get the proper permits, you may want to consider hiring us at Blue Ridge Wildlife Removal & Pest Management. Our Professional trappers are experienced in trapping squirrels and can often do so more quickly and efficiently than homeowners. They also have the necessary equipment and knowledge to safely and humanely trap and relocate the squirrels. Give us a Call at (540) 776-1769

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