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#1821923 - 02/13/10 07:02 PM Squirrels- " Well, how would YOU do it ? "
LT GREY Offline
trapper

Registered: 04/09/07
Posts: 16058
Loc: Central Ohio
The other day, I posted on a thread and got some feedback from a WCO, who stated he would have done it quite another way.
So, that got me to thinking that we have a lot of brilliant minds here, who don't always think alike, but can still solve the problem, somewhat differently perhaps, than myself.

I came up with the idea to present a problem and see how you, the WCO professional, would solve it, where would you set the traps, etc.

Ok, that said, here's the scenario:

I receive a call about 9 pm one night from a gentleman, who says "You came as a referral"....(Always good to hear.)

He explains that he had a woodpecker peck a hole in his cedar home and now, a squirrel has taken over a woodpecker hole and then made it's way through the drywall in his son's room.
(They are 2 and 4 years of age.)
To make matter's worst, he has to leave on a plane tomorrow morning and can I come, ASAP.

Well tomorrow happens to be ASAP, because we are in a snowstorm! whistle

Well, tomorrow, I drive over to find a huge house in a rather posh neighborhood, over a foot of snow on the ground and the hole where the squirrel has entered, is 40 ft up in the air and a tree in the way. smirk
The stairs to the 2nd story balcony is covered with snow and ice.
Dog tracks everywhere, covering the squirrels tracks and no one home....

Here are a few pictures:
Ok, lets hear it...

How would you go about it?

Hole is on the right side, about 8 planks from the top, along the white trim.
If you see a black dot, that's it!















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#1821997 - 02/13/10 07:36 PM Re: " Well, how would YOU do it ? " [Re: LT GREY]
warrior Offline
trapper

Registered: 01/28/07
Posts: 2664
Loc: Georgia
Ok, barring access to the hole itself (110s are perfect over woodpecker holes) I would look for his travel route. From the pictures my first guess would be the deck rail to the corner board and up along the downspout. I would place one trap backed into the corner board and bungeed or screwed to the deck handrail, first photo to the left of the grill tight to the house. The amount of snow still on the rail makes me question that so I look for other options. While I'm on the deck I will look for other possibles that aren't in the photos (limbs touching or close to deck, possible route up and down deck posts, tell tale scratches or chewing on deack rails, etc). I would probably set a couple more cages on the deck rails for good measure. Possibly the same with the lower deck as well.
The tracks next to the pool filter I assume are directly undet the stair landing at the second level so this are get a cage or two. Possible use of the post as access route so a cage at the base. This does what is obvious from the photos but I also check other areas of the home. The bay roof to the left gets the once over in case the squirrel is going that way. If I could access the roof I would also check directly above the hole in case the squirrel is going up and over. If up and over I look for the limb or power line it is using to access the roof. I set these areas based on what I find.
I would also be trying to figure out how I would get a 110 into position as it is my go to in these cases.
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#1822026 - 02/13/10 07:52 PM Re: " Well, how would YOU do it ? " [Re: warrior]
LT GREY Offline
trapper

Registered: 04/09/07
Posts: 16058
Loc: Central Ohio
Would you really climb a ladder sitting on ice and snow? The ground and roof are covered, mind you. No way you could safely access that hole w/ a 110, IMO.

You've got a tree in the way, to boot.
Are you sure you see the hole correctly?
It's 40 ft in the air!

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#1822048 - 02/13/10 08:01 PM Re: " Well, how would YOU do it ? " [Re: LT GREY]
Bob Jameson Offline



Registered: 12/25/06
Posts: 2316
Loc: SW Pa
Make access with permission into the house and visit the chew in room. Evaluate the situation. Explain the weather conditions dont permit a safe and normal external set up and maintenance routine.

Until the weather breaks allowing safer working conditions you can set up a forced nose cone and trap over the dry wall hole to catch any intruders into the room.Check the attic if accessable to see if that is a possible set up consideration and the basement possibly.

I dont typically set indoors but my safety and my employees is first. If these terms arent suitable he may call another WCO.I have had a few of these types of calls before with the same conditions.Place a drop cloth or a suitable catch material beneath the trap until the job is satisfied.The squirrels will almost always be close to or go for the warm air draft if they remain in the house for a period of time.

BJ
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www.wcsbatcontrol.com

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#1822066 - 02/13/10 08:08 PM Re: " Well, how would YOU do it ? " [Re: Bob Jameson]
warrior Offline
trapper

Registered: 01/28/07
Posts: 2664
Loc: Georgia
LT, I doubt I would in those conditions (though I have done crazier and dumber things before) but that would be my wish. I'd probably be mumbling some pretty nasty things while setting cages instead of what I wanted.
The hole is about a foot to the left of the downspout directly behind the top of that birch.
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#1822096 - 02/13/10 08:20 PM Re: " Well, how would YOU do it ? " [Re: warrior]
warrior Offline
trapper

Registered: 01/28/07
Posts: 2664
Loc: Georgia
Okay, if I were crazy enough to try this.
Ladder on upper deck, sweep/scrape away snow and ice maybe put down a ledger board to keep the feet from sliding. Use a lath strip to attach 110 and see if it would be possible to lean around the corner and slide the lath strip between the downspout and house. Like I said, I've been known to do some crazy stuff.
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#1822103 - 02/13/10 08:21 PM Re: " Well, how would YOU do it ? " [Re: warrior]
warrior Offline
trapper

Registered: 01/28/07
Posts: 2664
Loc: Georgia
Of course for down here it would be a moot point because with that much snow nothing would be rolling.
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#1822148 - 02/13/10 08:36 PM Re: " Well, how would YOU do it ? " [Re: Bob Jameson]
Travis Wolford Offline
trapper

Registered: 07/21/09
Posts: 193
Loc: Tipton, IN
I cant see what those soffit vents are but they look like ones I have seen before, are they just window screen? If thats the case then if you put a one way over the hole (if you can access it) and the squirrel happens to be outside when you do it will most likely go on up and sit on the downspout elbow and be back in most likely within seconds. I cant tell from the pic how close that little (looks like a soft maple) tree is to the house but I would suspect its gaining access from either that or the cedar corner (cant say for sure without seeing it). Im afraid I would side with Bob on that one and try the one way inside until the weather is fit (at this rate early April). If those soffit vents are what they look like and if that clap board has much age on it I would want to make sure I had every squirrel around caught before I sealed it up, I have done too many houses just like that to not catch them all. That just looks like a call back waiting to happen if you dont. Also if you can hang a one way when its fit I have taken a squirrel trap and zip tied it on top to catch ones that were outside when I hung the one way. It cuts down on chew ins while the job is going and you have a live squirrel for bait sometimes. Thats the best I can do with the pics. Im sure there are other ways but thats what I would do.
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it is not a stupid question if you do not know the answer

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#1822167 - 02/13/10 08:43 PM Re: " Well, how would YOU do it ? " [Re: Travis Wolford]
Travis Wolford Offline
trapper

Registered: 07/21/09
Posts: 193
Loc: Tipton, IN
If that tree is as close to the house as it looks and it is a soft maple the easiest solution to your problem would be fire up the 029 and make it go away. Then take the forty footer off the truck and go to work, after the basketball court ceases to be a hockey rink of course.
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it is not a stupid question if you do not know the answer

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#1822434 - 02/13/10 10:42 PM Re: " Well, how would YOU do it ? " [Re: Travis Wolford]
Ron Scheller Offline
trapper

Registered: 01/19/07
Posts: 1070
Loc: Mt. Olive, IL
Providing the roads are in good enough condition for towing.... I would back into my storage canopy, hook onto the towable lift, back it onto the BB court, and proceed to install a shelf and traps next to the hole just like any other squirrel job. If it doesn't block the driveway, leave the lift in place for the duration of the job. It would take 10 or 15 minutes a day to SAFELY retrieve the traps, replace, re-bait, and on the road again. After 2 or 3 days of no catches, remove traps, repair hole (or install a squirrel excluder), and schedule for a return visit when conditions are better for a complete, detailed inspection of the structure and possible additional critter-proofing. Don't forget to provide an estimate for tree branch trimming to minimize squirrel activity on the rooftop.

Did I mention the towable lift is BY FAR the best investment I ever made for my business? In the past 2 weeks I have used it for a woodpecker job at a huge auto dealership and for a squirrel job on a 2.5 story home.... both jobs performed during snow/ice conditions. Left the ladders at home..... of course this pic is from summer bat work.

_________________________
Ron Scheller
www.thebatguy.com

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#1822435 - 02/13/10 10:43 PM Re: " Well, how would YOU do it ? " [Re: Ron Scheller]
warrior Offline
trapper

Registered: 01/28/07
Posts: 2664
Loc: Georgia
No fair, that's cheating. LOL
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#1822448 - 02/13/10 10:51 PM Re: " Well, how would YOU do it ? " [Re: warrior]
Ron Scheller Offline
trapper

Registered: 01/19/07
Posts: 1070
Loc: Mt. Olive, IL
I love that kind of cheating! I have a few guys (WCO's) that work within 50 to 75 miles from me, and they will refer these type of jobs to me as they know I have the ability to "cheat" and be safe. Of course I appreciate the referals, but I am even happier to know they will not put themselves in a dangerous situation just for "a few bucks".
_________________________
Ron Scheller
www.thebatguy.com

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#1822720 - 02/14/10 06:52 AM Re: " Well, how would YOU do it ? " [Re: Ron Scheller]
hvtrapper Offline
trapper

Registered: 03/11/09
Posts: 21
Loc: E. Iowa
Nicely put, Ron. It's just too bad that some customers think their "problem" is more important than our safety.
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Tom Walters

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#1822842 - 02/14/10 08:20 AM Re: " Well, how would YOU do it ? " [Re: hvtrapper]
ccary Offline
trapper

Registered: 03/26/08
Posts: 686
Loc: tennessee
you the man Ron. Wishful thinkin for me at this point.
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LAST STEP TRAPPING SHIRTS AND ACCESSORIES

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#1823125 - 02/14/10 10:02 AM Re: " Well, how would YOU do it ? " [Re: ccary]
BUD25 Offline
trapper

Registered: 12/26/08
Posts: 2747
Loc: southern Minnesota
I would have to refer this job to someone like Ron, I dont get on ladders in the winter or on roof tops. No way am I going to put myself out of commission for $300.00 .
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Bud's Nuisance Wildlife Removal LLC
Bud's Trap Co.
www.trappinmoles.com

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#1823182 - 02/14/10 10:18 AM Re: " Well, how would YOU do it ? " [Re: BUD25]
Trapstar Charlie Offline
trapper

Registered: 11/08/07
Posts: 464
Loc: newark Ohio
Ron, kinda like driving a 8 penny nail with a 10 lb sledge? =) Grey, why cant you put a 12 ft ladder on that deck after you clear a spot? Just reach around.
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#1823243 - 02/14/10 10:40 AM Re: " Well, how would YOU do it ? " [Re: ccary]
LT GREY Offline
trapper

Registered: 04/09/07
Posts: 16058
Loc: Central Ohio
These all were really great advice.
I do appreciate all the input, as it helps others in this field be able to 'rethink' a situation, when they are faced with one that they aren't sure about.
At some point, we all come across something new or different than we are used to.

Warrior's advice to 'go right to the source' was interesting, because that would normally be what I would want to do, except that you notice it is way-y-y up there...(about 35-40 ft. up), perhaps the picture are a bit deceiving. If you note the top of a door at the bottom of the picture, that is about 8ft high. The ground is covered with ice and snow, as is the roof, deck and everything else, which makes this dangerous ladder work for a $50. squirrel.
Not sure you noticed the stone retainer walls that were build, in the left bottom side of the picture, noting this was 'at the bottom' of a hill. The reason the deck is so high up. This home was built into a hillside with the front touching the road side, the back of the house facing downhill. Because of a small fenced in yard, a 'lift' as Ron pointed out, would NOT be accessible.
Great idea on a flat surface though.
Warrior mentioned setting a 110 over a hole and I confess I've tried this trick before with mixed results. more often being the trap fired. I'd like to see your version Warrior, of how you MOUNT a 110 kill trap on a flat wood surface. Shelf w/ bracket?
I mean, I don't know. The one thing I wouldn't want is to have the woodpecker, who originally made the hole return, because then we have a dead, (or worst a wounded screaming) woodpecker dangling high above the ground for the neighbor to see. Because in a high society neighborhood, you're ALWAYS being watched, don't think you're not!
No one mentioned, setting a cage trap by the air conditioning unit, which is where I showed the picture of fresh tracks. Maybe that's fur trapper mentality to set on fresh sign, but it's what I did. I also set a cage trap at the base of the tree, just under the deck, to help with the weather conditions (expecting more snow) because that's where the squirrel was climbing up.

There were two ideas that I liked, one the consideration of the deck railing closest to the hole, I believe by Warrior, accessible with some slow, slippery conditions up the icy and snow covered stairs, but doable.
The best one I thought was by Bob Jameson and not to 'jump on the Bobby J band wagon' but it was I thought. Considering the ice and snow conditions, and the height of the hole from the outside, IN THESE CONDITIONS a doable option!



After setting a few traps outside, the homeowner arrived and I was able to see things from the inside.
The hole in the boys bedroom was about the size of a baseball, covered by the homeowner with layers of DUCT TAPE, what else! smile
When I peeled it off, well, there sat the squirrel, at least, I could see part of it. You know , somehow I was figuring just how to reach in there and grab that squirrel that was only inches away...only the hole wasn't big enough, but being a creature of habit, I tried it anyway...Man, that squirrel shot out of that hole, lickety split and was gone in a flash, this almost right at dark. I re-taped the hole shut. Bob's idea to place a nose cone trap there, would have been a good choice!



The next morning, I had the squirrel, a pregnant female on top of the railing.




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#1823252 - 02/14/10 10:44 AM Re: " Well, how would YOU do it ? " [Re: LT GREY]
LT GREY Offline
trapper

Registered: 04/09/07
Posts: 16058
Loc: Central Ohio
I hope others will follow suit and post another situation for others to add input to. I feel it would be a great learning tool for those newcomers in this business.

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#1823329 - 02/14/10 11:17 AM Re: " Well, how would YOU do it ? " [Re: LT GREY]
warrior Offline
trapper

Registered: 01/28/07
Posts: 2664
Loc: Georgia
LT, here's my standard 110 over a hole set. I don't have photo's so I'll try to talk you through it.
First, verify that is is squirrel only. I agree that woody woopecker in a conibear without permit is bad.
Set 110 and position it over the hole. Note where the bottom corners of the jaws rest, especially the inside bends. You may even take a pencil and mark the outline of the lower jaw. Set 110 aside, now install a screw (I use 1 1/4" drywall but you can use whatever the situation requires) at each inside corner of the lower jaw (the lines you drew helps). You want to run the screws in just far enough that the lower jaw just hooks in behind the screw head. In some cases a small washer helps. Now put the 110 on the two screws and note the top jaw position and repeat the process for the top. I usually hold the trap in position while installing the top screws so that I get a solid hold with the screws. Once done the trap can not move off of the wall or slide side to side (if you set the secrews at the inside of the corner bends (this is for traps with corner bends and not square ones). Be sure the screws are on the OUTSIDE of the jaws. Screws on the inside prevent it from firing.
Once the trap is secure I secure the ring on the chain by either wiring it to something solid or using two screws to hold by "pinching" it between the heads. For out of sight sets I may even attach cable or wire so that the fired trap falls out of sight or behind something. (you could even position a bucket in the appropriate spot)
With modifaction I use this same set at the gutter line. Two screws into the fascia for the trap to sit on and 3" screws into the roof decking for the top. Sometimes the top screws caqn't be secured solid enough so a screw threaded between the coils of the spring and into the fascia or decking adds stability. A screw through the coils though will not allow the trap to fall clear.
In the case in the photo I may not be able to reach around to do this so I would use a lath strip. To do this I position the set trap on the end of the strip where I want it positioned (strip at the BOTTOM of the trap) and note where the INSIDE of the jaws are positioned (draw lines in need be). Now install four screws so that the trap can be set over them so that the jaws pinch the screw heads. What your doing is creating a home made coni bracket. Set the trap on it and secure the chain. You can now slide the whole set into position and secure the lath strip from the other end. I have used variations of this set on many different substrates where screws at the trap don't work including rotten wood, stucco and brick with tapcons.
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#1823337 - 02/14/10 11:20 AM Re: " Well, how would YOU do it ? " [Re: warrior]
warrior Offline
trapper

Registered: 01/28/07
Posts: 2664
Loc: Georgia
BTW, you also want to position the dog so that it faces out from the structure so that it will fire and not be caught by shingle or other obstructions.
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