Knowing is half the battle.
Learn about Kansas City Critters
Kansas City and surrounding area is home to plenty of wild animals, acclimated to our weather and thriving in our natural habitats. Once the animals have made themselves comfortable in your home or on your property, they can be immensely destructive, carry diseases, and generally wreak havoc. While our technicians are experts you can depend on, this guide is for the wildlife novice to gain a better understanding of what we do and why.
You might be surprised to learn that bat removal and exclusion is a large amount of our workload through the spring and fall months. While helpful for the environment and super-useful at getting rid of mosquitos, moths, and other bugs, they can also carry disease in their saliva and their feces is toxic and corrosive. They are generally not aggressive, but will bite when threatened or distressed. Out of doors, bats aren't anything to be afraid of, although their nocturnal swooping habits can feel intimidating (thanks to all the vampire movies out there).
We believe in removing bats from inside the home for the safety of the occupants but we don't recommend removing them from the property... less insects are a great benefit of housing a bat family! One of our favorite ways to encourage bats to live somewhere other than your house is to install a bat box at the rear of a property. You get to keep the natural insect repellent and avoid all the pesky disease and toxicity!
Our process is simple but pretty interesting, too. Using a product made specifically for bat removal, we install basically a one-way door that allows the bats to exit (which happens most every evening at dusk) but doesn't allow them back in. Additionally, we need to seal every hole we can find to keep them from gaining access back into your home. With all chimney caps secured or replaced, small holes sealed, and repairs completed at all of the intersections of the roof and exterior walls, the bat problem should be gone!
A few simple steps like removing any standing water from close to the home and limiting the use of outdoor lights will reduce the attraction of bugs, and therefore keep the bug hunters away from your house! We also offer pest control spray services, which can drastically reduce the bug population around and in your home, so don't hesitate to call us. We can take care of one problem and keep it from turning into another.
We aren't allowed to exclude bats from a home (except in cases where they have entered the living space) during the months of June & July. They are a protected species, and because there are babies in nests during those months we are legally bound to allow the mother to return to her nest with the food she finds at night. So we are allowed to do exclusions prior to the nesting period and after the juveniles are large enough to leave on their own (at around two months of age). We work overtime during Spring and Fall to complete as many bat exclusions and repairs as possible!
Let's face it - mice are adorable. But they are more adorable in a cage or outside! The domestication of our little rodent friends makes it easy to forget they are wild critters that can literally survive almost anywhere. Those cute little feet carry bacteria, disease, and parasites, and they can cause plenty of damage to our homes trying to house and feed their large families. They especially love to come into a warm home during the winter months or a cool home to escape the heat of summer. A tiny opening or space will quickly become a cozy place to live.
Maintaining your indoor and outdoor spaces will help tremendously - be sure to sweep up or remove any food in an outdoor eating space and keep indoor food on upper shelves. Crumbs, trash, and food left easily acceptable are essentially an invitation for mice to join your family! Additionally, keeping
clutter and large landscaping (untrimmed hedges, climbing vines, etc) away from the house will keep mice from finding a dark spot to hide and look for a way to get inside.
We offer a great service called an exclusion, which can help tremendously to keep mice out of your house. An exclusion involves one of our technicians going around the foundation of the building and sealing up holes where mice can gain access to the interior.
Additionally, our technicians can place rodent traps and bait boxes around your property in inconspicuous places. This significantly reduces the population of various types of rodents and deters them from entering!
Mice can squeeze through a hole the size of a dime!
Cridder Ridder is a family-owned operation, and the Cridder boss' small children think squirrels are the cutest animals around. Our technicians, however, are immune to their charm because they've seen the damage those tiny little furballs can cause.
Most of the squirrels we see in the Kansas City area are tree dwellers, which is why wooded properties are most likely to have an infestation. Your garden, oak trees, and compost piles have likely provided a decent amount of food to the pre-winter buffet squirrels depend on to get them through the cold season, and your attic looks pretty enticing to a freezing cold squirrel looking for warmth. Once they enter, they are somewhat difficult to remove due to their sneaky nature... and then they love to dig in insulation, scratch drywall, and chew through wiring.
To reduce their potential access, we suggest trimming back trees from the house (at least 6 feet, as you've probably seen how far a squirrel can jump and stick a landing) and keeping shrubs and bushes away from your siding and exterior walls. Additionally, insuring that your chimney caps are snug, all intersections of the rooflines and exterior walls are hole-free, and any roof damage is repaired will go a long way toward deterring their entry! Lastly, keep bird feeders away from the house or make sure they are equipped with a squirrel baffle to keep them from a guaranteed steady diet of delicious nuts and seeds.
Squirrels can find food buried beneath a foot of snow, and their front teeth never stop growing!
Trash Panda. Dumpster Shark. Ring-tailed Bandit. All names for raccoons, and very telling about the species' general respect for your personal property... they have none. While they can range from the size of a housecat to a medium-sized dog (have you ever encountered a fat, sassy raccoon in the middle of your driveway? Pretty intimidating, honestly.) and come with a cute little face, the damage they can deliver is pretty incredible. We've seen raccoons destroy homes and attics to the point of complete devastation, and removing them quickly and efficiently is critical.
We've removed more raccoon families from inside chimneys and wall voids than we care to remember, and if they get inside an attic or a living space, it's pretty bad news. They have excellent dexterity and their tiny hands can easily manipulate locks and openings until they gain access... not to mention they have tenacity and can-do attitude! Add all of that to the fact that they carry disease, bacteria, and parasites, and also turn aggressive when cornered or threatened, and it makes these little critters a pretty undesirable houseguest.
We always advise letting the professionals - that's us! - handle your raccoon problem. We understand their behavior, nesting patterns, and lifestyle, and we know how to remove them from your property and keep them from returning.
In general, we recommend keeping all trash bags in metal or plastic trash cans, and keeping any outdoor cans locked. Garden maintenance is helpful, as well, as they love to forage for any fruits or vegetables that are ripe on the vine or have recently fallen to the ground. If possible, we don't advise feeding pets outside (including leaving out food for feral cats), but if you must we suggest removing any uneaten or spilled food each evening. Window screens should fit well, as tiny little claws can reach into gaps and pull them free. The same goes for chimney caps, damaged areas of the roof, loose shingles, loose siding, places where gutters have torn free, intersections of the roofline and exterior walls, etc. Our last tip is to place lattice or fencing around decks, elevated sheds, or any structures that offer a place to burrow.
President Calvin Coolidge had a pet raccoon named Rebecca in the White House (along with a bobcat, goose, donkey, two lion cubs, an antelope, and a wallaby!)
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While these animals are the most prevalent in the Kansas City area, there are plenty of other critters that need ridding. Every day, we handle a variety of wildlife issues including groundhogs, skunks, opossums, snakes, birds, and even small dead animal removal. We also provide recurring pest control spray and one-time treatments for pest infestations... trust us to keep your home and property pest and critter free!