All posts by robbrussell

Snow Can Tell a Story

Winter has always been a fascinating season for me. I’m sure most—or at least some—of you agree with me on this. Watching the snow fall, admiring the perfectly white settled snow, and looking at the beautiful patterns of snowflakes on glass windows are some of the things we love about winter.

This season is also a great time to watch winter animals playing around. Anyone who is lucky enough to have witnessed a fox, a rabbit, or any other animal graciously moving through the white sheet of undisturbed snow will tell you that it is indeed a mesmerizing experience. But if that certain animal attempts to break into your home, would it still be as mesmerizing? I don’t think so.

Nuisance animals during the winter

It was a cold winter day when we received a phone call from a customer telling us that some kind of animal attempted to enter their house through their roof. I was intrigued. I headed over to the customer’s house and was instantly greeted by the following:

Raccoon snow tracks 1

Animal tracks! Based on their size and shape, we found out that these tracks were made by raccoons. Thanks to the snow we were able to easily follow the footprints.

Raccoon tracks 2

If you look closely at the photo above you will notice that the raccoon walked around the side of the house, presumably looking for a way inside. The raccoon walked around the bush and went towards the tree.

Raccoon snow tracks 3

The animal climbed up the tree (raccoons are great climbers, thanks to their agile paws) and on to the roof.

Raccoon destroys roof

From there the raccoon tried to break into my customer’s house. Thankfully their chimney is covered. The animal failed and decided to leave, but not before he tears up some shingles. The photo above shows that the raccoon did some significant amount of damage to the roof. The raccoon may have been looking for food or shelter; this happens quite frequently during the winter.

In need of animal removal services?

Are you in need wildlife removal services? The experts here at Illiana Wildlife Services are always ready to help, no matter what the season is. We will perform a thorough inspection of your house or property before performing the nuisance animal exclusion and removal. We will ensure you that your house will be critter-free, and we’ll make sure it stays that way.

Call us now!

  • Chicago – (708) 320-0004
  • Indianapolis – (317) 203-6083
  • Northwest Indiana – (219) 464-7966

 

 

Why Do Opossums Play Dead?

Opossum
Photo credit: Dawn Huczek via Foter.com / CC BY

What Are Opossums?

Opossums (scientific name Didelphimorphia) are small-sized marsupials that can be found in North and Central America. These tiny critters can reach 76 centimeters (29 inches) from its head to the tip of its tail and can weigh anywhere between 4 – 6 kilograms (9-13 pounds). They are omnivores, like humans and their diet mostly consist of the following:

  • nuts
  • fruits
  • leaves
  • seeds

However, as omnivores, they are also seen hunting and eating small animals like snakes, mice, worms, insects, and rats. On some occasions, they have been witnessed killing chickens.

Opossum vs. Possum

“Is it an opossum or a possum?” This is a question that people usually ask. Opossums and possums are both mammals, however, Opossums (scientific name Didelphimorphia) can be found in America while Possums (scientific name Phalangeridae) are found in Australia. They are both marsupials but they are not related in any way. Most people make the mistake of referring to opossums as “possums.”

Opossum “Playing Possum”

You may have heard of the term “playing possum” which basically means to “play dead”. As the term suggest, it came from the odd characteristic of Opossums:  They literally feign death when faced with larger animals like foxes, wolves, and even humans. Opossums will immediately—and involuntarily—lose consciousness due to shock. This temporary comatose can last from several minutes to a few hours.

When threatened, the opossum will fall down to the ground, lying on its side. Its mouth will be left hanging open with drool leaking and its tongue sticking out. Its eyes can either remain open, although unmoving, or it can also be closed. If that isn’t enough to scare off a predator, perhaps the fake smell of “decay” will. When an opossum plays dead, a foul-smelling substance will start oozing out of its anal glands. This green, pungent fluid makes its predators think that the animal has been dead for a long time. Even predators have a sensitive appetite, it seems.

While this defense mechanism may help an opossum against wild animals, it can be ineffective—even fatal—when used against humans. Some opossums have been buried alive because people thought that they were actually dead. Others have been run over by vehicles after suddenly collapsing on a busy road.

How Should I Deal With Opossums?

The best approach would be to leave the animal alone. Opossums are usually mild by nature. They rarely pose any threat against humans and they will usually leave on their own. However, if an opossum gets inside your home, you may want to call a wildlife control company. There is usually no need to harm or kill the animals, which is why humane exclusion techniques work best.

Call Us!

Need to get rid of opossums? Call us now and we will gladly help you out!

  • Chicago – (708) 320-0004
  • Indianapolis – (317) 203-6083
  • Northwest Indiana – (219) 464-7966

There’s a Dead Animal inside My House

Dead animal removal
Photo credit: Furryscaly via Foter.com / CC BY-SA

After working in the animal control industry for several years, I have received calls that usually start with the following line: “I think there’s a dead animal inside my house.” I have also learned that animals, specifically rodents, are great at doing two things: gnawing and dying. On this blog post we will be talking about the latter.

I always emphasize the importance of catching any type of animal infestation during its early stages. Stopping a small problem is always easier than trying to mitigate a large one. When I conduct an inspection and see an extensive amount of animal damage done inside my customers’ walls and attics, I always wonder how and why they let such problem go out of hand.

But then I realize that not all animal infestations are noticeable. That is, until the animal (or animals, if you’re a bit unlucky) start to die and rot. I am certain that nobody, not even the animal care and control professionals, can get used to the smell of a rotting carcass. It stinks. It really does. So I can totally understand the frustration that my customers experience when dealing with the unbearable smell of a dead animal inside their homes.

Why Are Animals Dying Inside My House?

A sick animal on the verge of death usually crawls inside an area that is partially or completely covered. Your attic, walls, or under-decks fall under this category. Some people may set animal traps and completely forget about it until the horrible stench reminds them again. Other times, the animal simply gets stuck inside the house and starves to death.

How Do You Remove the Animals?

Our methods of removing a dead animal are quite simple but not necessarily easy. All we do is basically follow our nose. We may have to cut some holes in our clients’ walls and we may also find a colony of animals in the process, but we make sure to remove the source of the smell. Once located, we pick up the carcass, seal it in a bag, and properly dispose of it. We can also clean the surrounding area where the dead animal was found.

Can I Prevent This From Happening Again?

Of course! If you want to prevent animals from dying inside your house, then make sure to completely cover up any hole and opening. Stop unintentionally inviting wildlife critters by securing or eliminating their food sources near your homes. This includes trash cans, leftover pet food, and etc.

If a dead animal is keeping your home from smelling fresh, you can always call us. We can definitely remove animals, either dead or alive, from your home.

  • Chicago – (708) 320-0004
  • Indianapolis – (317) 203-6083
  • Northwest Indiana – (219) 464-7966

Health Hazards Caused By Birds

When we think about birds, we usually imagine peaceful, magnificent creatures of flight incapable of causing any kind of trouble to us, humans. While birds are indeed beautiful creatures, the mess they leave behind is not something to be happy about. Birds are great at crafting their nests but unfortunately, they aren’t so great at doing it in a clean and orderly fashion. They will definitely leave behind nest materials (dried leaves, twigs, etc.). Their nests can also block gutters and downpipes. Bird control can be difficult if done by amateurs, as some bird flocks are extremely stubborn.

Bird Flock
Photo credit: 501622731plus1 via Foter.com / CC BY

Diseases Carried by Birds

For business owners though, the nests aren’t the main cause of concern when it comes to bird infestations. Bird droppings and the diseases that they may carry are the main reasons why people want to get rid of birds as soon as possible. Below is the list of some of the diseases carried by birds:

  • E. Coli – this disease is mainly found in cows, but birds can become carriers if they peck on cow feces. Birds spread this disease through their droppings.
  • Avian Pox – birds infected by Avian Pox can be identified by the large “warts” that usually grow on the featherless parts of birds.
  • Salmonella – salmonella is a bacteria found in bird droppings that can cause diarrhea and severe abdominal cramps in humans. Transmission usually happens if someone consumes anything that has been infected by a bird’s fecal matter.
  • Cryptococcosis – this fungus can be found inside a bird’s intestinal tract. Transmission usually happens through inhalation. It initially starts as a lung infection which can eventually travel to the central nervous system.
  • Aspergillosis – Aspergillosis is a respiratory disease that is fatal to birds and can be transmitted to humans. Transmission happens when they inhale large amounts of Aspergillosis spores.
  • Trichomoniasis – this disease causes wounds on the throat of the infected bird, which makes it difficult for them to consume food. During the advanced stages of the disease, the bird will be unable to breathe.

These diseases are transferrable to humans. Business owners who value the health of their customers and employees do everything they can to prevent such diseases from spreading, especially if the business is in the food and health industry.

How to Get Rid of Nuisance Birds

If you notice nuisance birds near your area, notify bird control experts immediately. Some species are protected by the law so avoid harming unidentified birds that come along. Wildlife control workers can identify the birds and employ the most effective bird control methods for the situation. The experts here at Illiana Wildlife Services have years of experience in humane animal control. If your family or business is experiencing any bird-related problem, call us today!

Woodpecker Damage and What to Do About It

Imagine this: You’re lying in bed one Sunday morning, quietly enjoying your well-deserved rest after a stressful work week. Everything is nice and peaceful. You hear your wind chimes quietly tinkle in the light morning breeze. “I love Sundays,” you think to yourself as you slowly drift back into sleep.

Then BAM!

You’re suddenly jolted into consciousness by a loud drumming sound coming from your roof. Now you’re annoyed. Your once tranquil environment is now plagued by this irritating noise.

The above scenario can happen to you if you let woodpeckers visit your home. These birds are members of the Picidae family, of which are known for their powerful beaks. As their name suggests, woodpeckers use their beaks to drum and drill on wood. Woodpecker damage can be a huge problem if left unattended.

Why Do Woodpeckers Drill Holes in Wood?

Woodpeckers drill holes in wood for the following reasons:

  • To search for food, usually insects
  • To create nests for their young
  • To make their own shelter

It should be noted, however, that woodpeckers drum on hollow wood and other hollow objects (e.g. pipes, trash cans, poles) to either inform other woodpeckers of their territory or to attract a mate.

We Offer Woodpecker Control Services

We have received phone calls from distressed home owners asking us if we can solve their woodpecker problems, and we can! Our woodpecker control methods are non-lethal, which means that we will not be killing or harming the birds. We are a humane wildlife control company, after all.

Now, there are several ways to perform woodpecker control, and what works for one client might not work for another. We will first do an initial survey to identify the cause of the problem. These birds do not like shiny materials, so we sometimes use metal or aluminium to scare them away. Other times, we may use other exclusion methods to deter the woodpeckers.

 

Repairing Woodpecker Damage

Normally, our customers will also ask us to fix the damage the animal has done.  Fortunately, woodpecker holes are generally shallow and easy to cover. Unfortunately though, a single woodpecker can create several clusters of these holes. The sizes of the holes vary. Some are mildly unnoticeable while others are of significant sizes. Below, you can see woodpecker damage pictures on one of our customer’s house:

Wood pecker repair

As you can see, the holes are quite large. This can be a problem because openings like these can attract other animals into your home. So we fixed it:

after

Our skilled workers were able to completely cover the holes, almost as if they were never there. Not only do we prevent woodpecker damage from happening again, we can also patch up the damage that has already been done.

 

Call Us!

If you value your home and your time, then woodpeckers should be the least of your concerns. Call us now and we will take care of the problems for you!

Chicago – (708) 320-0004

Indianapolis – (317) 203-6083

Northwest Indiana – (219) 464-7966

What to Do When You See a Skunk

Skunks, although calm and non-threatening animals, are one of the most avoided animals in America. These animals live in all of the 50 American states and once in a while, they may be seen wandering around public and residential areas. These small, furry animals may not be as dangerous as bears or snakes but they have the ability to make your entire home smell horrendous for weeks. Here, we will list down tips on what to do when you (unfortunately) run into a skunk:

  1. Do your best to avoid the animal – skunks are nocturnal animals, which simply mean that they are more active at night. If you think that a skunk is lurking around, just try to avoid doing outdoor activities after dark so you can minimize the risk of running into one. Skunk removal experts recommend that you walk your dog before the sun comes down to avoid any encounters.
  2. Do not threaten the skunk – skunks only spray when they feel threatened. If you run into a skunk, do not try to go near it nor should you attempt to kill it. The best course of action when you find yourself in this situation is to simply back away as slowly and as quietly as possible. Any sudden movements and loud noises can easily startle the skunk. Skunks may occasionally approach people simply because they can’t see them. These critters are extremely near-sighted so they may not see you when you’re far away. If a skunk is approaching you, try talking in a low voice, this makes the skunk aware of your presence and may actually make it walk away.
  3. Notice the signs of a threatened skunk – before spraying, skunks will usually prepare by raising its tail, exposing its spraying glands. It will stomp its front legs on the ground while facing away from you. If you see these signs, again, try to back away slowly and quietly.
  4. Call wildlife removal experts – If a skunk has entered you property, do everything you can to avoid it until wild animal removal services Do not attempt to scare it off or you may increase the risk of getting sprayed.
Skunk Removal
Photo credit: NDomer73 via Foter.com / CC BY

As with all kinds of wild animal encounters, it is always best to consult wildlife exclusion and removal professionals. DIY skunk repellents and other methods of skunk removal may be ineffective if done without using the proper equipment.

For any problems regarding skunks and other wild animals, feel free to call us and we will gladly help.

What to Do When You See a Skunk
Illiana Wildlife Services – Northwest Indiana
(219) 464 – 7966

Flying Squirrels in Northwest IN

Flying squirrels in Northwest IN are not something that we deal with on a regular basis. They just don’t seem to be very common. So imagine our surprise when we got 3 calls that ended up being flying squirrels in one week!

Flying squirrels are rodents and have ever growing incisors as they love to chew. They are also nocturnal. When we get a phone call with a description of night time activity, it is going to be raccoons, bats, mice, or flyers. Usually, we can determine if it is or isn’t raccoons by a few more questions. They are large animals and their entry hole into your home is usually visible from the ground. That leaves us to determine if bats, mice or flying squirrels are the source of the noise.

Flying squirrels in Northwest IN

The only way to correctly determine at that point is with a visual inspection. Bats have a very distinctive dropping, unlike rodents. Mice and flying squirrels dropping size is very similar but flying squirrels tend to use toilets (one distinct area to use as a bathroom), as opposed to mice, which defecate everywhere.

Once the animal is identified, we can remove and prevent reentry. Flyers can be excluded from a home with the use of one way doors similar to the same way we do with bats. While we can and do trap a lot of animals a year, it always makes me feel good when we can come up with a humane solution that works for people and animals alike.

If you are getting a scratching noise in the middle of the night, give us a call. We would love to help!

Dealing with Bats in the Winter

Just got a call where a customer in Porter County Indiana was hearing something in their attic at night. Typically, that ends up being raccoons or mice, but they suspected bats because they had bat guano on their porch during the summer.

Bats have very unique time sensitive regulations guiding when they can be removed from attics in Indiana, which are laid out by the DNR. The first one is that between May 15 and August 15, we can’t exclude the bats from your homes due to the fact that a possible maternal colony may have non flight babies that may be trapped in the attic when the adults are excluded, leaving a environmentally beneficial animal with a low reproductive rate at risk. (It can also save you from having dead bats in your attic or walls, potentially saving you from an odor problem.)

They have some ecological pressures due to the White Nose Syndrome. The second time of the year when we can’t do bat exclusions is when the nighttime temps are below 50 degrees. Bats hibernate when it is cold and they are unlikely to use the one way doors used to facilitate the bat exclusion. The other reason is that when a bat that does fly out through a one way door, it is at risk of not making it through the winter. The stress of finding a new place to hibernate and finding food sources would be fatal.

Dealing with Bats in Wintertime

So how did we handle our customer’s situation? Well, first of all, she wasn’t happy to hear that she has to live with bats for another six months or so, but she understood. What we ended up doing, was to give her an estimate for the bat exclusion, take 50% down, and then spent half a day going around and making as much of her home as bat proof as we could. All we left was the two entry points that the bats were currently using. We will then monitor the weather and when conditions are right, we will return in the Spring and hang the one way doors.

 The reason for this is because bat jobs can take many hours. With the small window of time in the Spring to remove bats (roughly around the beginning of April to May 15), we wouldn’t have the time to get to our back log of customers and all the springtime mother raccoons with baby calls that we get that time of the year. Therefore, we have to give ourselves a head start.

The system works well, and we are good at what we do. If you hear scratching in your attic this winter, especially after a drastic temperature change, either up or down, you may have bats and may want to give us a call and get an inspection. We would love to help.

Cook County Illinois Wildlife Removal

Wildlife Removal Near Tinley Park, Cook County  Illinois

service locations from google maps

Wildlife Removed near Tinley Park,  Homewood Crete Chicago Heights Wildlife Removal Bats, Birds, Beaver, Moles, Raccoon, Skunk, Squirrels , Flying Squirrels and Ground Hogs.

Squirrel Removal Tinley Park Illinois

Flying Squirrel Removal Tinley Park Illinois

We have caught the gray squirrel in attics and flying squirrels in attics. Ground squirrels and chipmunks each have their own distinctive damage traits based on their burrowing activities. Squirrels can chew through any exposed wooden surfaces to gain entry into your home or attic. We squirrel proof homes. We  also remove  squirrels near Homewood Illinois, Crete Illinois, Chicago Heights Illinois. We also service other Illinois and Indiana Locations check our service map below Including Calumet City Illinois, Matteson Illinois, and Roseland Illinois and other parts of Southern Cook County and Eastern Will County IL.

Raccoon Removal Tinley Park Illinois

Cook County Illinois Wildlife Removal
Photo credit: vladeb / Foter / CC BY-ND


Raccoons are always trouble and always a big menace  when they are a nuisance. We provide pest control and animal trapping for all raccoons damaging your property or raccoon living in your attic. We raccoon proof homes using widely accepted animal damage repair techniques. We even clean up raccoon feces and raccoon urine. We do attic cleanups with attic restoration equipment and even replace damaged and soiled attic insulation.

Ground Hog Removal Tinley Park Illinois

Ground hogs are also known as woodchucks. They are a member of the marmot family and love to chew vegetation and are an unwanted guest near any lawn or garden. Missing some of the flower bulbs you planted its a good chance a ground hog or wood chuck from near Tinley Park Illinois ate it.

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Skunk Removal Tinley Park Illinois

We get rid of skunks and keep skunks and their skunk smells away from your home. We also remove dead skunks. We capture skunks, and remove all skunk odors. Please call for skunk prevention and skunk exclusion using skunk proofing techniques.

Mole Trapper Tinley Park Illinois

The best way to get rid of pests in the yard digging tunnels is to hire a mole trapper. We don’t use poisons and when you hire us we will show you the moles we capture and get your mole problem in your lawn under control. We offer year round mole trapping services when needed.

Illinois Raccoon Squirrel Wildlife Removal Crete Chicago Heights Homewood Tinley Park
Illiana Wildlife Services – Indianapolis
(317) 203 – 6083

 

Valparaiso Dyer Munster Schererville Gary East Chicago Wildlife Removal

ILLIANA WILDLIFE SERVICES

Valparaiso Dyer Munster Schererville Gary East Chicago Wildlife Removal
Photo credit: Foter / CC BY-SA

Serving  All of Greater Valparaiso Indiana including all of Lake,  Porter,  Laporte, Jasper and  Newton Counties

219-464-7966

Valparaiso Dyer  Munster Schererville Gary Hammond and many more Indiana communities.

Indiana Wildlife Removal : Bats, Beaver, Birds, Chipmunks, Ground Hogs, Ground Squirrels, Opossum, Raccoon, Skunks, Snakes, Squirrels.  Dead Animal Removal .

ILLIANA Service Locations

Affordable , Humane Wildlife Removal

 219-464-7966

Lake County IN, Porter County IN, Laporte County IN, Jasper County IN, Newton County IN

Bats, Beaver, Birds, Chipmunks, Ground Hogs, Ground Squirrels, Opossum, Raccoon, Skunks, Snakes, Squirrels

Dead Animal Removal . Call us for any dead animal concern that you may have on Private property NOT PUBLIC ! 

 Any dead animal, bat or bird in your home, attic, fireplace, chimney or some where inside of a  wall or ceiling.

 We use humane methods &  trap, catch and remove nuisance  Bats, Beaver, Birds, Chipmunks, Ground Hogs, 
Ground Squirrels, Opossum, Raccoon, Skunks, Snakes, Squirrels

Click To Call

219-464-7966illiana logo

ILLIANA WILDLIFE SERVICES  is licensed in the State Of Indiana. We Service The Following Indiana Counties

Lake County IN, Porter County IN, Laporte County IN, Jasper County IN, Newton County IN

Cities We Service  

Beverly Shores Boone Grove Cedar Lake Chesterton Crown Point Dyer East Chicago Gary Griffith Hammond Hebron Highland Hobart Kouts Lake Station Leroy Lowell Merrillville Munster Portage Saint John Schererville Schneider Shelby Valparaiso Wheeler Whiting

Service Locations By Zip Codes
46303 46304 46307 46311 46312 46319 46320 46321 46322 46323 46324 46327 46341 46342 46347 46348 46356 46360 46368 46373 46375 46382 46383 46385 46390 46391 46394 46402 46403 46404 46405 46406 46407 46408 46409 46410
What professional services does your company provide?
Animal Removal, Animal Damage Repair, Attic Cleanup, Bat Removal, Bird Control, Beaver Trapping, Chipmunk Removal, Coyote Trapping, Ground Hog Removal, Mole Trapper, Raccoon Removal, Rodent Removal [Rats, Mice, Squirrels, Flying Squirrels], Skunk Removal, Snake Removal, Wildlife Removal, Dead Animal Removal

Valparaiso Dyer Munster Schererville Gary East Chicago Wildlife Removal
Illiana Wildlife Services – Indianapolis
(317) 203 – 6083