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The kind of equipment you will need to trap a wild animal will vary from animal to animal, and also from situation to situation. Let’s say you have an animal trapped in a wall cavity. You can only reach that wall cavity from the top — from within the attic — unless you want to cut a square patch of the wall out, remove the creature, and then repair the hole you just made. In some cases, the hole-cutting scenario is the only option, such as when small animals get caught in wall cavities that are not accessible from the attic or anywhere else.
In cases where you CAN reach the animal from above, a snare pole tap can come in handy. This kind of trap and equipment will also prove useful when you have an animal caught in the chimney that you can't reach from the bottom. A snare pole will not be useful if you have rats, however, or slightly larger animals. You also need to ensure that you know how to use a snare pole properly. Wild animals should be capture around the neck and under one arm, not just around the neck. By not ensuring the snare loop has gone underneath one arm, you run the risk of the trap tightening too much around the animals neck and killing it. At the very least, you could severely injure it.
Other animals will need different types of equipment. Rats and mice are better suited to rat and mouse traps, and we would never recommend that you buy or use poison to get the job done. Not unless you want to spend the next few months cutting out random sections of the dry wall in your home to try and locate the source of a rather bad dead-rodent smell. Rodenticide isn't fast-acting. The rodent has plenty of time to get back to its nest, curl up, go to sleep and then die. And that's exactly what it will do. If you don't know where that nest or bedding space is, you're going to have one hell of a job trying to find it using your nose just to guide you.
One-way doors and exclusion devices are great pieces of equipment to use when you want to encourage the critters to move along naturally. These styles of traps work rather well for bats in the attic. All holes and entry points are sealed, with the exception of one — the main one. This final hole / entry point will have a one-way exclusion door on it. The bats can fly out, but they can't get back in again. Once you can be sure that all bats are gone, you are then free to seal up the remaining hole and remove the one-way exclusion device.
With traps attached to them, usually on the side of your home or roof, these one-way exclusion traps can also work rather well for bother small animals, including squirrels in the attic or on the roof.
You will need a great deal more equipment if you want to trap a wild animal than just a trap too. If you are working in the attic or on the roof, you will need a ladder, a flashlight, and a second person to make sure the ladder doesn't fall down, or worse than that, you.
You will need protective clothing too, and this includes eye protection, thick gloves, disposable gloves, coveralls, food protection, and more. This may sound like a bit of an overreaction, but when you start to learn about the biological hazards associated with these rogue, invading wild animals, you certainly won’t want to take any chances. We are talking about animals that carry and transmit diseases such as the plague, rabies and roundworm. It takes a long time for humans to recover from these diseases, and to eradicate them. As well as being a good enough reason not to trap an animal, it should also be the reason you choose not to get too close, and also why you treat wildlife with a little more respect. We're sure you wouldn't be encouraging your kids to feed the raccoons if you knew that raccoons could have the rabies virus without you even knowing it. It's a disease that can lie seemingly dormant for many months before it rears its ugly head. If the treatment hasn't been received by then, death is almost certain. Treatment must be received BEFORE the symptoms of the disease start to show.
Alongside protective clothing, you will also need cleanup equipment. Just as the animals themselves are incredibly dangerous, the waste and biological material that the animals leave behind is also incredibly dangerous. You’ll find roundworm eggs in raccoon scat (droppings). Histoplasmosis in bat guano. Opossums can bring salmonellosis to the party. You will need an army of cleaning products to fight back against these threats, and that includes antibacterial agents, bleach, disinfectants and biological enzyme cleaners. You can't even sweep the mess up either, especially in the case of bats. The disease spores found in bat guano can be sent airborne as you sweep them up, and this can lead to inhalation.
The tools you will need to successfully trap a wild animal are extensive, and we still haven’t covered everything. You’ll need to make sure you've bought the right trap, and if you don’t know what animal you're up against, you may need to track it for a while, which may require further equipment. And then, once everything is done, you may need to repair the damage that these animals leave behind. Rodents can chew through wires and cables, and you may need to replace or repair all or part of the electrical system of your building. Personal possessions could have been chewed through, or peed on. All of this stuff will need to be disposed of in the right way too.
And don't even get us started on what to do with the animal AFTER you've captured it …
For more information, you may want to click on one of these guides that I wrote:
How To Guide: Who should I hire? - What questions to ask, to look for, who NOT to hire.
How To Guide: do it yourself! - Advice on saving money by doing wildlife removal yourself.
Guide: How much does wildlife removal cost? - Analysis of wildlife control prices.
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