Grey squirrels build their dreys (nests made of twigs, leaves and grass) in the forks or hollows of trees. They will also breed in roof spaces where they may build their nests from loft insulation or other available materials. Grey squirrels do not hibernate but are less active during periods of cold weather.
Squirrels usually enter the roof spaces of buildings by climbing or jumping from nearby trees. Once inside they will tear up insulating material to build their nests. They will gnaw woodwork, plastic piping and electric wiring, which could lead to floods or fires. They also contaminate water tanks with their droppings.
Squirrels will often gnaw on the bark of trees causing considerable damage. They will also take cultivated fruit and vegetables, dig up plants and bulbs, and dig holes in lawns. Often they raid the nests of small birds to steal eggs and young.
The council provides a service via its in house pest control team for proofing against squirrels and the removal of squirrels inside domestic properties. Fully trained officers will survey the property and then carry out the required measures in the most appropriate locations. Proofing involves blocking up gaps and entrance holes with tightly wedged wire mesh, crushed wire netting, metal sheeting or other suitable materials.
Other forms of controlling squirrels include poison baiting and cage trapping. However these methods should not be undertaken by inexperienced people. Our Pest Control team will be able to advise on the best technique.