- Wildlife trapping, removal and relocation are the best choice as it is less traumatic for the animal. Live traps with release of animal on property with property owner permission, seems to be the best humane way of dealing with nuisance animals such as opossums, bats, and other small animals.
- Animal exclusions consist of creating an unfriendly environment and once the animal(s) is driven out, sealing the building to prevent re-entry.
- Animal control by repelling is a short term solution that does not always work; and when it does, it only works on snakes and some rodents. Most hardware stores carry the sonic emitters that are used for this purpose. Please keep in mind that if you have pets, it will affect them as well.
- For larger animals, tranquilizer darts are a possible way of relocating animals to more suitable habitats without the need to kill any animal.
Most of these animals are opportunistic feeders, and if they can get out of the weather, courtesy of you, they will settle in to enjoy the good life. The biggest problem with this situation is that rodents and other small animals carry diseases such as the bubonic plague, rabies, and transport insects such as ticks which can carry Lyme disease and Rocky Mountain spotted fever which can be transmitted to humans. At the very least, you can count on them to ravage the insulation, drywall, and bring in debris such as bird feathers (which can have parasites on them) to use in the building of their colonies. It is rare that a rodent remains single. Most often it is a pregnant female looking for a good birthing space that takes up residence in your home.
What to do if you are surprised by a wild animal:
- Never approach a wounded animal – contact the Department of Wildlife
- Do not feed wild animals – if they figure out people mean food, it just makes the problem worse.
- If the animal is aggressive move to safety immediately and call Animal Control or the Department of Wildlife for your area. Keep in mind that sick and/or animals can be very unpredictable, and someone trained in dealing with the may be required.
- Do not handle wildlife as they often carry diseases.
- In Illinois, It is illegal to care for sick, orphaned, or injured wildlife without a permit to do so. Follow the link to learn how to solve a problem with wildlife at your home http://web.extension.illinois.edu/.