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Flying Squirrel Removal

Athens-Clarke County, Georgia Regional Office of Rid-A-Critter

Sealing flying squirrels out of a house in Athens

Sealing flying squirrels out of a house in Athens

Flying squirrels are one of the two squirrels in Georgia and South Carolina (the other is the gray squirrel) that account for most of our squirrel-removal work.

First of all, let's clarify something: Flying squirrels like to think that they can fly, but they really can't. They can't take off, climb, or gain altitude; nor can they perform complex maneuvers in the air. What they can do is glide from a high place to a lower place and land with great accuracy exactly where they want to, enabling them to get into houses even when there's no easy way to climb up.

Flying squirrels have this ability because of a part of their bodies called the patagium, which is a membrane between their front and rear legs. It provides a rudimentary "wing" that enables them to glide. Their tails are also adapted to flying, being shaped in such a way as to form a "rudder" that helps them to steer in flight. Their feet are also adapted to landing on vertical surfaces -- something even most birds can't do.

On average, flying squirrels can achieve glide ratios of almost two to one, meaning that the average flying squirrel can travel almost twice as far horizontally as it loses altitude vertically. But because they don't have real wings nor the ability to flap them rapidly enough to generate enough lift to overcome their relatively heavy body mass, they can't take off from the ground nor gain altitude.

Nonetheless, the ability to glide gracefully and accurately gives flying squirrels a big advantage. It enables them to travel from high places like tree tops without having to worry about cats and other predators who might consider them a tasty snack if they had to scamper along on the ground. Instead, flying squirrels can spend most of their lives aloft, easily evading both terrestrial and arboreal predators.

Another thing that flying squirrels can do is fly onto buildings and enter them through very small holes or openings. Once they're inside, flying squirrels cause similar sorts of problems as their earthbound cousins. They poop and pee all over the place, tear up and damage stored products, damage insulation and HVAC ducts, and create fire hazards by gnawing through the insulation on electrical wiring. They also carry parasites, some of which can transmit diseases; and their droppings can serve as a breeding medium for disease-causing fungi. Obviously they're not the kind of guests you want living in your home.

Flying Squirrel Biology

Flying squirrels got into roof through narrow construction gap

Flying squirrels got into this home through this small gap

Flying squirrels are rodents in the squirrel family, Sciuridae. There actually are are two species of flying squirrels in the United States: the Northern Flying Squirrel and the Southern flying squirrels. The two species are very similar, and some scientists wonder whether they should be considered two different species at all rather than strains of the same specie.

In any event, the flying squirrels we get in Athens and most of the South are, appropriately enough, Southern flying squirrels, Glaucomys volans. Southern flying squirrels in the wild live in any kind of trees, unlike their Northern cousins who only live in conifer forests. In nature, flying squirrels nest in tree cavities; but as human development has reduced the size of forests, they have adapted to living in buildings, usually in attics and soffits.

A flying squirrel's diet is a lot like that of mice. Most of their diet consists of nuts, seeds, fruits, and fungi. On occasion, however, they'll also eat meat such as insects, slugs, snails, and small birds, as well as eggs. Like rodents in general, they hoard food (mainly nuts and seeds) during the warm season and store it away for the winter.

Baby flying squirrels are born in the spring. Their litters range from one to six individuals. Like rodents in general, they are born pink and hairless, with their eyes closed, and are totally dependent on their mothers. Their eyes open in two to three weeks, they start venturing out of the nest at about five or six weeks, are weaned in about two months, and are fully independent at six months. They usually spend their first winters as bachelors sharing a pad with others their own age, and then start their new lives as adults the following spring.

Flying Squirrel Removal

Flying squirrel control can be quite a challenge. Because flying squirrels can glide impressively, they can get into any house that's within range of a higher perch like a tree or a taller building. They can also climb very well when needed, have excellent balance (enabling them to walk along utility wires like other squirrels), and can squeeze through very small openings.

What all this means is that sealing up a house against flying squirrels is much more difficult that sealing out gray squirrels. Making a house flying squirrel-proof is more similar to a bat-proofing job. That means it requires a very skilled, knowledgeable technician with just enough of a tendency toward OCD to find and seal even the tiniest cracks, holes, and other entry points.

Flying squirrel control also requires specialized equipment, most of it of the elevation sort, such as ladders, scaffolding, and cherry pickers. This is one of the reasons why DIY flying squirrel control almost never works. Without the ability to safely inspect and seal every part of a home, a flying squirrel exclusion job is almost certainly doomed to fail.

By the way: There's no such thing as a "flying squirrel exterminator." Flying squirrels are classified as "nuisance animals," not "pests," and it is illegal to set poison or lethal traps for flying squirrels. They must be humanely removed and sealed out of a home, not killed. Anyone who offers to set poisons or lethal traps for flying squirrels is breaking both federal and Georgia law.

Luckily for us, at Rid-A-Critter, we've always used humane, non-chemical control methods. Our flying squirrel control methods rely on humane removal and exclusion for long-lasting, environmentally-friendly control.

Flying Squirrel Control Gallery

Here are some pictures of flying squirrel removal jobs we've done in the Athens area.

Rid-A-Critter has the tools and personnel to handle any flying squirrel control job, so please call us today.

 

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In Columbus Ga today meeting new clients.
by Jason Arruda
Mar 14, 2019 12:45:31 pm.

Visiting clients in Albany Ga. on this Presidents Day. Be safe!
by Jason Arruda
Feb 18, 2019 11:52:47 am.

Wow, this warm weather has these bat calls on the rise. Bats are gonna be out early with this warm weather and early spring.
by Jason Arruda
Feb 06, 2019 11:57:56 am.

Well it was a good Monday seeing clients in Carrollton, Dallas, Rockmart and Bremen Ga. today. Time to head home. Be safe everyone.
by Jason Arruda
Jan 28, 2019 04:25:42 pm.

Here's How How Flying Squirrels were Getting Into a House in Jefferson, Georgia
by Webmaster
Jan 22, 2019 10:06:42 am.

As always it’s nice to visit with our clients in the Albany Ga area. Thanks to all companies and people who refer us to your friends and family for wildlife needs.
by Jason Arruda
Jan 21, 2019 02:47:07 pm.

News Flash: Our new company blog is live!
by Webmaster
Jan 18, 2019 05:52:35 pm.

Had a good day visiting some of my clients in the Gainesville Ga. area today.
by Jason Arruda
Jan 17, 2019 02:38:57 pm.

Squirrels, squirrels, and rats. Just left a house in Vestavia Hills. We are sealing that one today for squirrels and rats. On my way to pehlam for gray squirrels. Then back up to Birmingham for more gray squirrels. Then to Irondale.
by Chris Scott
Jan 17, 2019 11:14:15 am.

Check Out this Flying Squirrel Entry Point into a House in Jefferson
by Webmaster
Jan 11, 2019 10:48:00 am.

Safety training in Jasper Georgia today. Couldn’t ask for a better view.
by Dean Scott
Jan 11, 2019 10:33:18 am.

Customers report hearing what sounds like critters bowling in their attic at night. Thats the sound of flying squirrels or rats dropping acorns as they move about in the attic. Call Ridacritter and we will stop the bowling tournament fast.
by Richard Adcock
Jan 11, 2019 10:17:08 am.

It’s was a great day in Birmingham Alabama today. I got to see a lot of friendly faces again. Our relationship with the pest control industry has been and is amazing. Thanks to all the Pest Control companies that refer us for wildlife.
by Jason Arruda
Jan 10, 2019 03:08:08 pm.

Good morning team. I’m headed to Albany Ga. today to see some clients. Hope you all have a great day.
by Jason Arruda
Jan 09, 2019 08:05:26 am.

Its finally a beautiful day in the south! The sun is shining and the temperatures are nice. Our techs are out in the filed removing attic critters and excluding them from homes. If you have rats, mice or other varmints in your home call us.
by Richard Adcock
Jan 05, 2019 12:02:27 pm.

New Google+ Post: Happy New Year!
by Webmaster
Dec 31, 2018 11:26:02 am.

Seeing clients in and around Griffin Ga today.
by Jason Arruda
Dec 28, 2018 01:07:45 pm.

New Google+ Post: Merry Christmas!
by Webmaster
Dec 24, 2018 10:43:21 am.

Spent the day with clients in South Georgia from Albany to Valdosta. Time to head back to Pike county.
by Jason Arruda
Dec 17, 2018 05:06:48 pm.

Good luck 🍀 to all students taking their midterm exams this week.
by Jason Arruda
Dec 17, 2018 04:25:14 pm.

Video of Carl Correcting Another Animal-Removal Company's Work
by Webmaster
Dec 11, 2018 09:55:45 am.

Wow, it’s been a lot of wet and cold weather here in Ga. and has the phones ringing. Make sure your home is secured against all the wildlife looking for warmth and shelter.
by Jason Arruda
Dec 10, 2018 04:42:47 pm.

Getting lots of calls for removal of flying squirrels from attics all over Georgia and Alabama today.
by Richard Adcock
Dec 10, 2018 12:26:02 pm.

In McDonough Ga seeing some of our clients that referred us last month to say Thank You!!
by Jason Arruda
Dec 07, 2018 11:40:58 am.

Interesting Flying Squirrel Hole in a House in Athens
by Webmaster
Dec 05, 2018 10:58:20 am.

This Video Shows How Poor Home Upkeep can Lead to Animal Problems
by Webmaster
Nov 23, 2018 05:19:58 am.

New Google+ Post: Happy Thanksgiving!
by Webmaster
Nov 21, 2018 11:11:26 am.

This is What Flying Squirrel Footprints Look Like
by Webmaster
Nov 14, 2018 09:40:59 am.

Our Heartfelt Thanks to All Our Veterans and Service Members, Past and Present
by Webmaster
Nov 09, 2018 06:10:15 am.

Picture of Tim Removing a Dead Animal from a Chimney
by Webmaster
Oct 31, 2018 12:39:47 pm.

Keith Found Flying Squirrel Droppings in a Rain Gutter
by Webmaster
Oct 09, 2018 10:49:07 am.

Tim Found a Surprise in the Attic of the Kramden Home
by Webmaster
Oct 05, 2018 10:34:32 am.

The Athens, Georgia office of Rid-A-Critter provides flying squirrel removal in Athens-Clarke, Greene, and parts of Barrow, Gwinnett, Hall, Banks, Jackson, and Oconee Counties in Georgia, including Athens, Auburn, Bogart, Commerce, Good Hope, Greensboro, Jefferson, Madison, Monroe, Watkinsville, and Winder. Your town not listed? Contact us.

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