Get Ready--They are Back
Well, get ready! This warm spell has started the Caledonia critters roaming around early this year. I have already been busy with the wood chucks and a few skunks this year.
May is the whelping (birthing time) for most warm blooded animals. The woodchucks and skunks are the most troublesome animals that we have in Caledonia. Most of the time the woodchucks are the ones that do the digging under your sheds and porches. Don't underestimate those skunks, they will move into those holes that the woodchucks use or vacate for some reason. Both of these animals are attracted by shelter, food supply and water. Water is something that they can go without for awhile. Shelter and food is needed everyday. Dog and cat food dishes, bird-feeders and garbage cans are readily available at most homes in Caledonia. Check out your sheds, barns, garages etc now, and if there is no sign of homesteaders, you are probably doing the correct thing. If you have signs of intrusion, address it now before the young arrive. One is easier to get rid of than a family!
We haven't talked about the dreaded raccoon as of yet. This guy will move into any where that he can get access to. He loves those garages that have doors that never close. They can find shelter in the warm attics, and usually there is a supply of dog or cat food and water near-by. They will evict the woodchuck out of his home also. A female raccoon with a litter of young is not a pleasant critter to meet when you go to your garage, in the morning, to get your car to go to work!
Our red and gray fox population has become a serious problem also. They are of the canine family, meaning that they favor meat in their diet. Small raccoon pups, household cats, woodchucks etc, are all of their liking. If you have a mouse or rat problem, you will have the fox visit your yard at night.
The guy that is at the top of our food chain here in Caledonia is the Coyote. Don't kid your self, he is here and is growing in numbers. He will take all of the above that we have talked about. He even is a controller of our Deer herd that we have here in Caledonia. Our deer herd is in great health and numbers, so food is there for the Coyote to take. If your house cat, that you let out at night comes up missing, your neighborhood Coyote probably knows something about why.
So, to make a long story short, fill in those holes around your sheds, garages and porches, close the garage doors, empty the bird feeders(the birds get plenty of wild feed in the summer) and don't leave those cat and dog food dishes on the back porches or in the garages.
Wild animals have a lot of protection given by the D.E.C. One just can't go out and buy a live trap and try and trap the critter and then take it for a ride. There are laws against doing this. Check with the D.E.C. before you take the problem in your own hands, or contact a Nuisance Wildlife Control Agent (like myself) and we will give you the best advice to take care of the situation.
With that all said and done, please enjoy our wildlife population that we have in Caledonia. If you come upon a problem critter, see why he is here and correct the problem.
If you can't, let us know about it.
Until next time,