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Home » Blog » How to Remove a Squirrel Nest: Tips and Tricks

How to Remove a Squirrel Nest: Tips and Tricks


Removing a squirrel nest can be a challenging task, especially if you're dealing with a persistent squirrel that keeps coming back to rebuild its home. Squirrels are known to build their nests in trees, attics, and other high places, which can make it difficult to reach and remove the nest. However, it's important to remove a squirrel nest as soon as possible to avoid any potential damage to your property.

One of the first steps to removing a squirrel nest is to identify its location. Squirrels tend to build their nests in warm and protected areas, such as attics, chimneys, and trees. Once you've located the nest, it's important to take precautions to ensure your safety. Squirrels can become aggressive if they feel threatened, so it's best to wear protective clothing and gloves when removing the nest. Furthermore, it's crucial to ensure there are no baby squirrels in the nest prior to extraction, as they will require relocation to a secure habitat.

Explanation of why squirrels build nests

why squirrels build nests

Squirrels are known for building nests, which are also called dreys, in trees and other elevated locations. These nests act as domiciles for squirrels, furnishing them with refuge and defense against weather conditions and predators.

There are several reasons why squirrels build nests. One reason is for breeding purposes. Squirrels build nests to raise their young, which are called kits. The nests provide a safe and secure place for the kits to grow and develop.

Another reason why squirrels build nests is for protection from predators. Squirrels, being prey animals, face susceptibility to an array of predators, encompassing birds of prey, snakes, and various other creatures. By building nests high up in trees, squirrels are able to avoid many predators and keep their kits safe.

Squirrels also build nests to store food. Squirrels are recognized for their tendency to accumulate food, frequently stashing it within their nests. This practice enables them to maintain a food reserve for periods of scarcity.

Overall, squirrels build nests for a variety of reasons, including breeding, protection, and food storage. If you need to get rid of squirrel nest, it's crucial to proceed with care and caution to prevent any harm to the squirrels or disruption to the nearby environment..

Common Locations for Squirrel Nests

Common Locations for Squirrel Nests

Squirrels are renowned for their adeptness in adjusting to diverse environments, leading them to inhabit various locations. They are recognized for constructing their nests in trees, within attics, and in crawl spaces. Here are some prevalent spots where squirrel nests are typically found:


Squirrels are arboreal creatures, and they are known to build their nests in trees. They prefer to build their nests in trees that are close to a food source, such as acorns or nuts. The nests are usually made of leaves, twigs, and other natural materials. They are built in the forks of branches and are often difficult to spot.


Squirrels are known to enter homes through small openings in the roof or attic. Once they gain access, they will build their nests in the insulation or rafters. They prefer attics because they provide a warm and safe environment for their young. However, their presence in attics can cause damage to insulation and electrical wires.

Crawl Spaces

Squirrels are also known to build their nests in crawl spaces. These areas provide a warm and safe environment for their young. They will often enter crawl spaces through small openings in the foundation or vents. Once they gain access, they will build their nests in the insulation or under the floorboards.

In conclusion, squirrels are adaptable creatures and can build their nests in various locations. Identifying the precise location of the nest before initiating removal is paramount. This practice guarantees a safe and efficient removal process.

Importance of Removing Squirrel Nests

Removing Squirrel nest

Squirrels are cute and fuzzy creatures that are often found in many backyards and gardens. Nevertheless, they can also become a nuisance by causing damage to property and homes. One of the most common problems caused by squirrels is the creation of nests in and around homes. While these nests may seem harmless, they can actually cause a lot of damage and pose a serious threat to the safety of homeowners. In this segment, we will delve into the significance of eliminating squirrel nests and the potential hazards linked with leaving them intact.

Damage to Property

Squirrel nests are often built in trees, attics, eaves, and other areas around the home. These nests can cause damage to the property by chewing through wires, insulation, and other materials. This can lead to electrical problems, fires, and other hazards. Additionally, squirrels may also chew through wood, causing structural damage to the home.

Health Risks

Squirrel nests can also pose a health risk to homeowners. Nests have the potential to draw other pests, including fleas and ticks, which may harbor diseases. Additionally, squirrels themselves can carry diseases such as rabies and salmonella. If a squirrel nest is left in place, it can become a breeding ground for these pests, increasing the risk of disease transmission.

Fire Hazards

Squirrel nests can also pose a fire hazard. As mentioned earlier, squirrels can chew through wires and insulation, which can lead to electrical problems. If a squirrel nest is built near electrical wires, it can increase the chances of a fire incident. Additionally, squirrels may also carry flammable materials into their nests, which can increase the risk of a fire even further.

In summary, removing squirrel nests is important to prevent damage to property, reduce health risks, and prevent fire hazards. Homeowners should take steps to identify and remove any squirrel nests on their property to ensure the safety of their home and family.

Legal considerations and the humane aspect of removal

When contemplating the removal of a squirrel nest, it's vital to consider the legal and ethical dimensions of the procedure. In many areas, squirrels are protected wildlife, and it may be illegal to remove their nests without a permit. It is important to take a look at the local regulations before attempting to remove a nest.

In addition to legal considerations, it is also important to approach the removal process from a humane perspective. Squirrels are intelligent and social animals, and removing their nest can cause significant stress and harm to the animals. It is important to take steps to minimize harm and ensure the safety of the squirrels and the people removing the nest.

One way to approach the removal process in a humane way is to wait until the squirrels have vacated the nest before removing it. This can be done by observing the nest for a few days to see if any squirrels are coming and going. Once it is clear that the nest is no longer in use, it can be safely removed.

Another option is to use deterrents to encourage the squirrels to relocate on their own. This can include placing a radio near the nest to create noise and disturbance, or using natural repellents like predator urine or peppermint oil.

If removal is necessary, it is important to use proper safety equipment and techniques to avoid injury to both the squirrels and the person removing the nest. This may include wearing gloves and protective clothing, using a ladder or other equipment to reach the nest.

Overall, when it comes to removing a squirrel nest, it is important to approach the process with care and consideration for both the legal and ethical aspects of the situation. By taking a humane approach and following proper safety procedures, it is possible to remove a nest without causing harm to the squirrels or the person removing it.

Understanding Squirrel Behavior and Nesting Habits

Squirrel Behavior and Nesting Habits

Squirrels exhibit a knack for constructing nests in diverse locations such as trees, attics, and chimneys. Grasping their behavior and nesting tendencies is essential for effectively removing a squirrel nest.

Squirrel species and their preferred nesting sites

Various squirrel species exhibit distinct preferences regarding nesting sites. For example, gray squirrels prefer to build their nests high up in trees, while red squirrels prefer to build their nests in coniferous trees. Flying squirrels, on the other hand, prefer to build their nests in tree cavities or in the attics of buildings.

Breeding seasons and implications for nest removal

Squirrels undergo two breeding seasons annually, occurring in spring and fall. During these periods, they are prone to constructing nests and nurturing their offspring. It's crucial to consider this when removing a squirrel nest, as disturbing it during breeding season can endanger or even result in the demise of young squirrels.

Signs that squirrels are nesting in your vicinity

There are several signs that squirrels are nesting in your vicinity, including:

  • Chewing or scratching noises coming from your attic or walls
  • Fecal matter or urine marks in and around your residence
  • Squirrel sightings near your home, especially during the early morning or late afternoon

If you suspect that squirrels are nesting in your vicinity, it is important to take action to remove the nest safely and effectively.

By understanding squirrel behavior and nesting habits, you can take the necessary steps to remove a squirrel nest without causing harm to the squirrels or damaging your property.

Pre-Removal Preparations

Before removing a squirrel nest, it is important to take certain precautions to ensure a safe and effective removal process. This section outlines the necessary pre-removal preparations that should be taken.

Determining the right time for nest removal

It is important to choose the right time for removing a squirrel nest. The optimal time for nest removal is during the winter months when squirrel activity is reduced, and the likelihood of nest occupancy is diminished. It is also important to ensure that all the squirrels have left the nest before attempting removal.

Local laws and regulations regarding squirrel removal

Prior to endeavoring to remove a squirrel nest, it is imperative to verify local laws and regulations pertaining to squirrel removal. Certain regions may necessitate a permit or enforce specific guidelines for the removal process.It is important to follow these regulations to avoid legal issues.

Preparing necessary tools and protective gear

To safely remove a squirrel nest, it is important to have the necessary tools and protective gear. This may include gloves, a ladder, pruning shears, and a trash bag. It is important to wear protective gear, such as gloves, to avoid contact with squirrel feces, which may contain harmful bacteria.

Considering professional help vs. DIY methods

Removing a squirrel nest can be a challenging and potentially dangerous task. It is important to evaluate whether it is best to seek professional help or attempt removal as a DIY project. Professional help may be necessary if the nest is located in a hard-to-reach area or if the nest is occupied by adult squirrels or babies.

By taking the necessary pre-removal preparations, individuals can safely and effectively remove a squirrel nest from their property.

Steps for Removing a Squirrel Nest

Removing a squirrel nest can be a tricky task, but it is necessary to prevent damage to your property and potential health hazards. Here are the steps to follow:

Inspection and confirmation of a squirrel nest presence

Before taking any action, it's crucial to confirm the presence of a squirrel nest on your property. Look for indicators such as chewed-up insulation, droppings, and scattered debris. Additionally, identifying the type of squirrel nest is important, as different types may necessitate varying removal methods.

Identifying if the nest is active (with babies) or abandoned

Determining if the nest is currently occupied by squirrels, especially babies, is crucial. If the nest is active, it's crucial to wait until the babies are sufficiently mature to leave the nest before initiating removal. This can take up to 8 weeks, so it is important to be patient.

Humanely evicting squirrels using approved methods

Once you have confirmed that the nest is abandoned or the babies have left, it is time to evict any remaining squirrels. This should be done humanely using approved methods such as one-way doors or exclusion devices. Natural deterrents and repellents can also be used to discourage squirrels from returning to the area.

Using one-way doors or exclusion devices

One-way doors and exclusion devices are designed to allow squirrels to leave the nest but prevent them from re-entering. These installations should be carried out by a professional to ensure proper placement and effectiveness.

Natural deterrents and repellents

Natural deterrents and repellents such as predator urine, hot pepper flakes, and mothballs can be used to discourage squirrels from returning to the area. Nevertheless, these techniques might not be as efficient as one-way doors or exclusion devices.

Removing the nest and cleaning the area

Once all squirrels have been evicted, it is safe to remove the nest and clean the area. It is important to take safety precautions to avoid disease transmission, such as wearing gloves and a mask. The nest material should be disposed of properly to prevent the spread of disease.

Safety precautions to avoid disease transmission

When removing the nest, it is important to wear gloves and a mask to avoid direct contact with the nest material and any potential diseases. It is also important to dispose of the nest material properly.

Disposing of the nest material properly

The nest material should be disposed of in a plastic bag and thrown away in a trash can with a secure lid. Do not compost or burn the nest material.

Repairing entry points to prevent re-entry

To prevent squirrels from returning, it is important to repair any entry points they may have used to access the nest.

Securing roof vents, eaves, and other access points

Roof vents, eaves, and other entry points should be fortified with robust materials like wire mesh or metal flashing to deter squirrels from gnawing through.

Using sturdy materials to cover holes and gaps

Holes and gaps should be covered with sturdy materials such as metal or concrete to prevent squirrels from entering.

By adhering to these steps, you can safely and efficiently eliminate a squirrel nest and thwart future infestations.

Post-Removal Actions

After successfully removing a squirrel nest, there are a few post-removal actions that homeowners should take to prevent future infestations and ensure the ethical treatment of wildlife.

Monitoring for signs of squirrel activity

It is important to monitor the area where the nest was located for signs of squirrel activity, such as droppings or chew marks. If any signs are detected, it may indicate that there are still squirrels in the area or that new ones have moved in. Homeowners should take action to prevent further infestations.

Maintenance tips to avoid future nesting

To prevent future squirrel nesting, homeowners should take steps to seal any openings or gaps in their home's exterior. This can be done by using materials such as mesh, steel wool, or foam insulation. It is also important to keep trees and branches trimmed away from the house to prevent squirrels from accessing the roof.

Landscaping and home improvements to discourage squirrels

Homeowners can also make landscaping and home improvements to discourage squirrels from nesting. This includes removing bird feeders, which can attract squirrels, and replacing them with squirrel-proof feeders. Additionally, homeowners can install motion-activated sprinklers or use natural deterrents like peppermint oil or predator urine.

Ethical considerations for rehoming or releasing squirrels

If squirrels are still present in the area after the nest removal, homeowners may consider rehoming or releasing them. However, it is important to note that squirrels are territorial animals and may have difficulty adjusting to a new environment. Homeowners should consult with a wildlife rehabilitation center or a licensed wildlife removal specialist for guidance on the best course of action. It is never recommended to relocate wildlife without proper knowledge and training.


Eliminating a squirrel nest can indeed seem daunting, but it's crucial to approach it in a safe and humane manner. Throughout this article, we've explored different approaches for removing squirrel nests, encompassing exclusion, trapping, and deterrent methods.

Recap of the humane and safe methods of squirrel nest removal

It's paramount to consistently prioritize the safety and welfare of both the squirrels and the humans involved. Exclusion techniques, such as sealing off entry points and installing one-way doors, stand out as the most humane and efficient approaches for removing squirrel nests. Trapping should be reserved as a last resort and should always be executed with humane traps, adhering to local wildlife regulations.

Encouragement to maintain a squirrel-free environment

Once the squirrel nest has been safely removed, it is important to take steps to prevent future infestations. This includes keeping trees trimmed away from the house, sealing off any potential entry points, and using squirrel-proof bird feeders.

By following these humane and safe methods for squirrel nest removal, homeowners can effectively and responsibly manage squirrel infestations and maintain a safe and healthy environment for both humans and wildlife. If dealing with nest is complicated for you, at Critter Stop we are ready to remove it for you!

When we have provided our squirrel removal services, we have found that commercial and residential owners struggle with this situation. Getting professional support is always the best choice. With our background in the Dallas - Fort Worth area, we understand the necessity of our customers and provide a quick and efficient service. Contact us at (214) 234-2616 and let us remove that nest for you!

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the safest method for removing a squirrel nest from a tree?

The safest method for removing a squirrel nest from a tree is to hire a professional wildlife removal service. They have the experience, tools, and knowledge needed to safely remove the nest without harming the squirrels or damaging the tree.

How to remove a squirrel nest?

If you must remove a squirrel nest yourself, it is important to wear protective clothing and gloves. Use a long pole or stick to gently lower the nest to the ground, being careful not to drop it. Once the nest is on the ground, you can dispose of it properly.

What are the legal considerations when attempting to remove a squirrel nest?

In some areas, it is illegal to remove a squirrel nest without a permit. It is important to check with your local wildlife agency to determine the laws and regulations in your area before attempting to remove a nest.

What are effective humane strategies for preventing squirrels from nesting?

One effective strategy for preventing squirrels from nesting is to install a squirrel-proof bird feeder. This will prevent squirrels from accessing the food source and discourage them from nesting in the area. Another strategy is to trim branches and trees near your home to eliminate potential nesting sites.

How to knock down a squirrel nest?

Knocking down a squirrel nest is not recommended as it can harm the squirrels and damage the tree. If you must remove a nest, it is best to do so with a long pole or stick and gently lower it to the ground.

What should be done if a squirrel nest is disturbed or damaged during removal?

If a squirrel nest is disturbed or damaged during removal, it is important to leave the area and allow the squirrels to return to the nest. If the nest is damaged beyond repair, contact a professional wildlife removal service for assistance.

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Lee Gorman
Lee Gorman
13:50 21 Nov 22
I’d give a 10 star review if I could! We had a great experience with Critter Stop. Everyone I dealt was friendly, professional, and reassuring. Phillip was very helpful and knowledgeable about the work he was doing. He walked me around the entire house to make sure I saw and understood the services he provided. He was also really nice and answered all my questions — he is exactly the type of person that should be interacting with customers.I love the fact that they will come back for up to 1 year after installation if any problems occur — this shows me they stand behind their work.The owner was great too, he personally came to my house and walked me through their offering. I recommend critter stop to anyone and everyone!
Susan Casey
Susan Casey
14:53 15 Nov 22
Critter Stop is a fantastic business! Everyone involved is extremely professional and very easy to communicate with. Chisam, the owner, did a great job of explaining the process to get the squirrels out of my attic during the initial free estimate. The exclusion crew who did all of the initial work was fabulous. The crew consisted of Phillip, Nick and Corey who arrived promptly when they said they would. They are happy, positive employees. Everyone is very polite and patient in explaining their work and answering questions. They came back several times to check the traps and finish it off with the fogging. Lester was very good about following up to schedule each trap check with me, and the office staff who took care of the billing was very efficient. Critter Stop is a well run company with honest, trustworthy employees! Thank you to all of you who worked hard to make my attic critter free and for the peace of mind that you guarantee your work. Great to know I can call them if for some reason a squirrel figures out a way to get back in!
Karen Eckholdt
Karen Eckholdt
14:54 22 Sep 22
Critter Stop has made this project easy and extremely professional from start to finish! They are very detailed and competent from start to finish and know so much about their business. They made a problem easy for us and at a reasonable cost. We would be happy to recommend this company and their owners and staff to anyone.
Aaron Echols
Aaron Echols
13:51 03 Aug 22
The guys at Critter Stop responded quickly, were very friendly, and gave us an honest estimate of what we might need. They explained why some items on other quotes were or were not necessary. They communicated well to get us scheduled, and did the work well and quickly. Great service at a fair and competitive price.
Jacob Scribner
Jacob Scribner
19:23 27 Jul 22
Brandon and his other coworker Gavin came to install insulation in my attic. I am very grateful for the hard work and professionalism. My house feels a lot better with the insulation installed. 5 star review. Cory Leach was also very nice and helpful. He came to my house to do another job and was very attentive and professional. Thank you Corey and thank you Critter Stop for helping me.The owner very polite and helpful, I’m glad I found this company to help me.
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