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Since 1983

Why it’s Important to Keep Animals out of Your Chimney

With forests continually being cleared, the animals who typically nest in hollow tree cavities are losing their homes, causing them to seek shelter elsewhere. Mortared brick chimneys are the perfect replica of tree cavities. Unfortunately, animals who gain access inside of your chimney create significant problems. Not only do they bring ticks, fleas, and other parasites into your home, they can cause a blockage, and start a potential fire by carrying flammable materials inside such as grass, twigs, and leaves. Many times animals like birds and squirrels end up dying in the chimney when they can’t get themselves back out.

This is because unlike in the past, where houses were constructed with mortared brick chimneys and clay tile liners, homes today are built with smaller metal flue pipes. The metal is too slippery, preventing the animals from gripping the material and climbing out. The bodies of the animals along with their nesting materials can also prevent carbon monoxide and other lethal gases from escaping the flue properly, causing a dangerous situation for you and your family.

If your chimney has stopped working, it’s very likely that the issue could be caused by critters such as birds, squirrels, or raccoons living in there. Keeping pests out of all parts of your home is necessary, which is why we recommend calling Critter Control® of Orlando for assistance.

How to Keep Animals out of Your Chimney

Whether you’re currently having pest problems or would like to take preventative measures to keep animals from getting into your chimney, we can help you. Installing a stainless steel chimney cap with wire mesh is an easy and effective solution for keeping critters from getting into your chimney, while at the same time allowing the by-products to be released. Another great benefit of having a chimney cap installed is that it helps to prevent water and debris from entering the inside of your home.

What to Do if You Discover Trapped Animals

If you have wild animals living in your chimney, never try and capture and release them yourself. You should also never try and smoke them out. If an animal is stuck, it could die, and then you’ll have an odor problem, on top of having to discard the body and clean up the mess yourself. Also, certain species of animals like the chimney swift bird are protected under the Migratory Bird Treaty Act. Those who hurt the birds or their nests that contain eggs can face legal consequences.

 

Call the Professionals

When it comes to complete wildlife solutions, Critter Control® of Orlando has you covered. We have over 15 years of experience assisting Central Florida residents with their animal control, pest control, and wildlife management needs. For a free estimate or to schedule a consultation for your home or business, give us a call today at 407-295-7194.

 If So, You Should Call a Professional Wildlife Expert to Handle the Repairs.

Animals who get inside human structures can cause extensive damage, resulting in costly repairs. Nuisance pests love to chew on electrical wiring, destroy insulation, tear up gardens and rat in home or businesslandscaping, dig holes in yards and damage heating/cooling ducts. Depending on the animal and the length of time, there could even be structural damage to deal with.

While you may be tempted to try and get rid of the unwanted critters and perform any necessary repairs yourself, there are multiple reasons why you should call a professional wildlife company to correct the situation for you.

One of those reasons is because experts know what to look for. They are knowledgeable about the different species of animals and what their habits are, making it easier for them to target potential problem areas quickly. This not only allows for a more thorough inspection but faster turnaround time for repairs, decreasing the chances of having to deal with an even bigger infestation.

Another reason is that repairs can be both overwhelming and time-consuming for residents, especially for those who may not have experience dealing with wildlife. However, even if an individual does have the proper skills and tools, finding the time to fix the damages can be difficult. Professionals understand that their clients have a lot of daily responsibilities, which is why they offer many different services to ensure the problem gets addressed promptly. This lets clients continue with their lives without the worry of having wildlife still living in their home or workplace.

Lastly, professionals will ensure the damages are correctly taken care of the first time. And, should the animals happen to get inside again, some companies have guarantees for a specific amount of time, which requires them to come back and fix the issue.

Contact Critter Control® for Your Repair Needs

In addition to animal removal and prevention, we offer many other wildlife services including damage repairs. Having nuisance animals infest your home or office is both stressful and a potential health concern.

Let the wildlife control specialists at Critter Control® of Orlando come out and give you a free estimate at a time that’s convenient for you. Once we complete an assessment of the damages, we will provide you with repair options to protect your building from future damages and critter invasions. Call us today at 407-295-7194.

Many animals who find their way inside of buildings, often never make it out. This could be for different reasons such as being injured or sick, or if they’re young, being left by their parents. A lot of times the animal is isolated and trapped in a hard to reach area where they eventually die.

Think you may have a dead animal on your hands? Here are three signs you may be right.

Terrible Odor – The most obvious sign besides actually seeing the dead animal, is the awful odor you begin to smell that comes and goes throughout your home or office.

Excess of Bugs – If you observe an unusual amount of flies throughout the building, especially in one particular area, chances are they are being attracted to a decomposing animal body. Depending on how long the animal goes unnoticed, an even bigger problem can occur if the flies start reproducing, creating a massive infestation.

Wall or Ceiling Stains – Again, depending on how long the animal has been decomposing, along with its size, and the location it ended up in, you could start seeing fluid seepage. Once the rotting animal tissue saturates your walls, ceiling, floors, or ductwork, you will need to make sure the areas are professionally cleaned and sanitized.

If you notice strange smells and have checked and cleaned all the areas where it could be coming from, yet the smell still persists, it’s time to call a professional wildlife management company.

Attempting to remove a dead animal on your own is never recommended. Not only is it challenging to locate if you’re unsure of where to look, but the disposal of a carcass is a messy process, and could put your health at risk when done incorrectly. That’s why it’s necessary you leave the task to a professional. For more information on our home and exterior cleaning services or to schedule your consultation, call us today at 407-295-7194.

The strong winds and heavy rains that frequently occur in Orlando during hurricane season cause pests to seek refuge inside homes and businesses. The rainfall also leaves behind a significant amount of standing water, which is the perfect breeding ground for mosquitos.

Hurricane season takes place from June 1 to November 30. And those who have lived in Florida and experienced past hurricanes such as Andrew, Charley, and Ivan, know all of the problems that come with the storms, including the excessive amount of bugs.

Preparation and Prevention

To lessen the pest’s chances of getting into your home or business, you’ll want to prepare for the storm by taking certain preventative measures. Here are a few suggestions to get you started:

  • Fix cracks or holes around the exterior of the building to keep bugs from sneaking in and help prevent small structural problems from becoming larger ones.
  • Avoid potential damage to your house or office building and eliminate hiding spots for pests by removing debris from the property.
  • Keep mosquitos at bay by dumping any standing water and bringing inside anything that could catch rainfall like toys, pet dishes, and open garbage cans.
  • Repair damaged screens, roofing, eaves, and soffits and check that window and doors are properly sealed. Doing this will help keep pests and excessive water out, while at the same time keep electrical costs down.
  • Skip buying food items that can go bad so that you aren’t faced with rotting food in the case your power goes out for an extended period of time. If your electricity is out for several days after the hurricane hits, it’s best to go ahead and toss any frozen and refrigerated food to avoid attracting bugs.
  • Eliminate excessive moisture by making sure gutters are clear, water is flowing away from the building’s foundation, and pipes are in good repair to avoid termite and ant infestations.

Schedule a Free Inspection

The best way to ensure your property is ready to weather the storm is by having an experienced pest management professional from Critter Control® of Orlando inspect your home or workplace to identify and correct current and future pest problems. We will remove the bugs using a non-invasive, effective, Eco-Wise pest control system and perform any repairs needed to keep unwanted pests and other critters from seeking shelter in your home or business due to the rain. Call us today at 407-295-7194 for a free inspection and to learn more about the pest control, repair, and prevention services we offer.

As rural land is continuously developed, opossums are pushed out of their natural habitat, forced to search for food and shelter in urban areas inhabited by people. And though most individuals have sympathy for wild animals trying to survive, it doesn’t mean they want them living in their home or on their property.

Opossums can create quite a mess and aren’t the cleanest animals, but they are fascinating creatures. Here are 10 facts about the misunderstood marsupial:

  1. Opossums roamed the same land with dinosaurs over 70 million years ago. While dinosaurs are now extinct, there are more than 60 species of opossums.
  2. Naturally high levels of immunity to most diseases mean opossums are more resistant to contracting rabies than any other mammal. They are also partially or entirely immune to snake venom, thanks to the serum protein in their blood that neutralizes it.
  3. Nicknamed “nature’s little sanitation engineers,” the opossums are opportunistic omnivores with a diet consisting of insects, snails, slugs, birds, frogs, rodents, eggs, fruits, plants, grains, and carrion. They also feed on human and pet food, and whatever scraps they can find in garbage cans or compost piles. They have an extremely high need for calcium which provokes them to eat the skeletons of the dead animals they consume.
  4. Though many people refer to opossums as large rats, they are actually marsupials (pouched mammals), like kangaroos and koalas.
  5. The Virginia opossum (Didelphis virginiana) is the only marsupial in North America.
  6. While you don’t want an opossum eating fruit and vegetables growing in your garden, they are great for cleaning up rotten fruit from the ground as well as feasting on pesky snails, slugs, cockroaches, and beetles.
  7. The opposable “thumbs” on the opossum’s rear feet assist them in climbing. In addition to opossums, primates are the only other mammals with opposable first toes.
  8. Opossums use their long, hairless prehensile tails to grasp materials and wrap around objects such as tree limbs. And, while they can hang from their tails for a brief time, they don’t actually sleep upside down like a lot of people may think.
  9. The mouth of an opossum has 50 teeth, more than any other North American land mammal.

When threatened, opossums pretend they are dead by rolling over, closing their eyes, becoming stiff, and forming a foul-smelling fluid from their glands. The

Though many find raccoons to be cute and harmless, having these masked bandits create a large mess in your home or yard is a situation you don’t want to deal with. Raccoons have gotten extremely comfortable with living in close proximity to humans, which makes keeping them away from your home that much more challenging.

To keep raccoons from targeting your property, try some of these following suggestions:

  • Close all potential entry points that lead into your house and attic, including pet doors
  • Keep pet food inside
  • Set up an exclusion barrier around your shed and porch
  • Install a fence as tall and slick as possible
  • Secure the lids to your garbage cans or leave them in the garage until the day of pickup
  • Trim back tree branches that are close to your roof
  • Remove bird feeders or make sure to set them up so they are difficult for raccoons to get a hold of
  • Clean any fallen fruit beneath fruit trees
  • Ensure your home is in good repair

Because raccoons are fantastic climbers, it’s hard to control them from accessing your property. Many people suggest using things like sprays, powders, sprinklers, lights, sounds machines, etc., but there are no devices or products that will keep them away. If you notice that animals are continually getting into your trash, killing the fish in your small pond, and stealing your pet food or bird seed, then until you make the areas less accessible or eliminate the tempting source, the raccoons will keep showing up.

The most effective way to handle your raccoon problems is with preventative repairs in addition to raccoon trapping and removal. With over 30 years of experience in wildlife management, Critter Control® of Orlando knows the behaviors of these wild animals and can assist you with both safely and humanely removing them from your property as well as help you to prevent them from coming back. For more information about the services we provide, please call us today at 407-295-7194 to schedule your free consultation.

Rats cause many issues for homeowners, especially with their constant chewing. Because rats have incisors that never stop growing, they must constantly gnaw on things to help wear down their teeth. If rats are unable to keep the growth under control, they would never be able to close their mouth, much less eat, which would result in them dying.

Materials Rats Love to Chew

Rats will pretty much chew on any kind of material that make up the interior and exterior of homes including:

  • Plastic
  • Brick
  • Lead
  • Aluminum
  • Wood
  • Cement
  • Asbestos
  • Cinder Blocks

Damages That Occur from Chewing

Some issues that can happen from rats frequent chewing are:

  • Water Damage – Soft, polyethylene tubing used for water lines can easily be chewed through by rats and other rodents, resulting in significant water damage.
  • House Fire – Though rats prefer to gnaw on wood, they are known to chew on the plastic covering of electrical wires, causing millions of dollars in structural damage in the United States each year. Another concern is that rats can electrocute themselves while chewing on the wires, killing themselves, which can not only cause a fire but a massive odor problem when the animal begins to decompose.
  • Torn Insulation – Rats tear and shred apart attic insulation to use for their nests. This can cause significant increases in your homes cooling and heating costs. Even worse is the urine and droppings rats leave behind, contaminating your attic, and putting your health at risk.
  • Damaged HVAC System – Rats often build their nests inside of heating and cooling ducts, which not only makes your HVAC system less efficient but also exposes everyone in your house to harmful germs and bacteria.

As you can see, rats chewing habits cause many issues for homeowners and therefore needs to be addressed as soon as possible to avoid further health risks and extensive structural damage.

If you are having rat problems in your home, let Critter Control® of Orlando help you get rid of them. We will perform a free home inspection to see what improvements can be made to keep rats from getting in, such as installing metal vent screens and repairing any roof soffits that have been chewed through. Our experienced technicians know precisely where to look for damage, which means your home can get the protection it needs a lot sooner. For more information on the residential services we provide, call us today at 407-295-7194.

Florida, like the rest of the states, is no stranger to its share of bugs. But, unfortunately, the nice break we get from seeing fewer pests during the winter doesn’t last long, as they come back full pest control orlandoforce when the climate gets warm and humid again.

The National Pest Management Association (NPMA) released its annual bug barometer, which shows what we can expect from specific bugs this year due to the extra moisture and unusually cold weather from La Nina during the winter. Sadly for us, mosquitos will have no problem quickly becoming a nuisance again thanks to the buildup of moisture in the region. Also, you can expect cockroaches and termites to thrive in the hot Florida weather just as well.

Though we can’t control Mother Nature and the increased bug population that happens as a result of the changes in weather, Critter Control® of Orlando can help you control and prevent the bugs that end up invading your yard and infesting your home or business.

Here are some of the reasons why prevention should regularly be incorporated into your pest control defense strategy:

  • Helps protect you and your family or employees from bothersome pests, which can pose problems to your health including mosquitos, fleas, bed bugs, rodents, etc.
  • The benefits of prevention far exceed the cost of having it. Being able to have peace of mind that your home is free from nuisance pests is priceless.
  • Regular pest control maintenance lets you avoid even bigger costly repairs, especially if the infestation is caught early.
  • Appointments can be conveniently scheduled around the days and times that work for you, with most routine visits not requiring you to be home at the time of service.
  • Helps to reduce the risk of potential health hazards such as severe reactions to bites and stings as well as specific diseases often carried by pests.
  • Pest issues will be resolved using the safest and most effective practices possible by trained technicians with years of experience.

Taking advantage of the pest control and prevention services provided by Critter Control® of Orlando helps you save time, money, and unnecessary aggravation. By calling us today at 407-295-7194, you can begin protecting your home and property before the start of summer when the bugs become an even bigger problem. We have over 30 years of experience eliminating unwanted pests and look forward to addressing any concerns you may have.

Have you been listening to strange noises coming from inside of your walls recently? Perhaps you’ve heard scratching sounds or what seems to be the pitter-patter of little feet running up and Orlando Ratsdown. If so, you could have rats living in the walls.

Fortunately, Critter Control® of Orlando has you covered. With over three decades of wildlife removal experience, we know what it takes to remove rats from the inside of walls and keep them out.

How Did the Rats Get Inside?

Rats find lots of ways to gain access into homes from outside, whether it’s through opened vents on the roof, gaps in roof edges or eaves, unprotected A/C chases, or gaps beneath siding or outer walls. While many rats find refuge inside of attics, oftentimes they create nests and birth their young inside the walls of homes or businesses.

What Dangers do Rats Pose?

Rats prefer the inside of homes, such as attics or walls, because it’s a safe place to live away from outside predators. If you think you have a rat problem, call Critter Control® of Orlando to avoid further damage such as:

  • The destruction caused by the rats constant chewing
  • Chewed-through electrical wires, which can create fire hazards
  • An abundance of urine and droppings, which are unsanitary and attract new rats
  • Contaminated food
  • A bigger infestation due to how quickly rats can reproduce
  • Messes caused by the rats building their nests
  • Dead rats who get trapped inside your walls

How Do I Solve My Rat Problem?

The first thing that needs to be addressed is how the rats are getting inside your home. A thorough inspection needs to be completed to find every possible place the rats are using as an entry point, including plumbing pipes. While you may think this task is an easy one, without the proper knowledge of building architecture and the understanding of rat behavior, many homeowners miss entry points, leaving them susceptible to reoccurring infestations.

 

The Critter Control® Difference

The professionals at Critter Control® of Orlando have the tools and skills needed to get rid of the invasive critters living inside of your home or business. Once we detect all entry points, we will cover them using proper techniques, such as installing stainless steel screens to keep rats from chewing their way back in. After all the areas are sealed, we can begin trapping and removing the remaining rodents.

Because it’s nearly impossible to set traps inside walls, the best way to catch the rats is by setting the traps inside of your attic near primary runways. After our trained technicians have captured all of the rats, we can then fix the damage left behind. For more information on how we can rid the rats from your walls, please call us at 407.295.7194.

Though they are one of the world’s misunderstood creatures, there is no denying that bats play a critical role in our natural ecosystem. And, while they benefit us in a variety of ways outdoors by eating bugs, pollinating flowers, and dispersing seeds, they wreak havoc on the inside of homes, primarily when roosting in large colonies.

If you come across a single bat somewhere in your home, chances are it may have gotten in through an open window or door. But if you see bats more frequently, they could be unwanted house guests. To discover how the bats are gaining access into your home, you will need to complete a thorough inspection, or better yet, hire a wildlife removal company who has the proper tools and experience to safely remove them.

How Bats Get In 

Bats never make holes to get inside of buildings; they only use entry points that are left open such as:

  • Cracks and gaps as small as half an inch around windows, conduits, and utility vents
  • Loose or missing shingles or tiles
  • Gaps in the bricks of walls
  • Openings in the attic
  • Barns or warehouses with large doors
  • Loose-fitting doors
  • An unprotected chimney
  • Broken or poorly-fitted screens

What to do When You Find Openings

While your first instinct may be to close all of the entry points you find around your home during your inspection, you cannot begin bat proofing until you are absolutely sure there are no bats still living inside. If you block all of their entry and exit points, the bats will get trapped and end up flapping around the home looking for a way to escape. As the bats begin to panic, they will become agitated and cause even more damage to your home.

Let the Professionals Help

Before the holes can be closed, a live bat exclusion must be performed. This will ensure all the bats are safely removed by allowing them to exit but keep them from being able to return. At Critter Control® of Orlando, we have over three decades of experience in removing bats from the inside of homes. For more information on how we can help you get your home restored to its previous condition, call us today at 407.295.7194.