If you’re a big fan of our animated friends “Alvin and the Chipmunks,” you might be under the impression that chipmunks are cute, harmless creatures. But if you have a backyard garden that has become the target of a chipmunk invasion, you know these small, squirrel-like creatures are anything but harmless to your landscape and home. Chipmunks are natural diggers, and a chipmunk family can do extensive damage to plant roots in your garden.
While chipmunks love to munch on your fruits, bulbs and young plants, it’s their burrowing activities that can cause the most serious issues on your property. Their long-term tunneling can cause significant structural damage to the foundation of your home. You’ll need to learn how to get rid of chipmunks effectively to prevent the need for costly repairs or the reduction in the value of your home.
Chipmunks: How to Get Rid of Them with Homemade Remedies
Methods for how to get rid of chipmunks in your garden or around your home include finding effective ways to repel them. Typical methods include spreading mothballs in and around your garden, as it is a common belief that chipmunks are repelled by the smell of naphthalene, the active ingredient in mothballs. In my experience, however, mothballs only provide a short-term solution for deterring chipmunks, if they even work at all.
Another option is to cover your plants with wire netting or mesh. You could also try spraying a concoction of garlic powder and water on gardens or flower beds with the hope that the pungent odor will deter the pests. These methods are far from foolproof though. Hungry critters can be extremely resourceful, and they often find ways to get through or even under netting. Homemade concoctions tend to lose their aromatic properties quickly and are usually washed away after the first rainfall.
How to Get Rid of Chipmunks with Havahart® Repellents
Over the course of 25 years of gardening, I’ve discovered that Havahart® repellents are a more effective chipmunk deterrent than homemade remedies. Havahart® Spray Away, for example, uses an infrared sensor to detect the presence of a chipmunk and frighten it away with a combination of unexpected noise, motion and a burst of water. All you have to do is connect the unit to a water supply and place it in the chipmunk’s path. When the sensor detects the animal’s motion, the valve automatically opens and the sprinkler produces the sudden jet of water along with a “tic tic tic” sound to startle it.
Another great product is Critter Ridder® Animal Repellent, Ready-To-Use Spray, an all-natural dual-action product that impacts the animal’s keen sense of taste and smell. Spray it on the vegetation that has critter damage, and the capsaicin, oil of black pepper and piperine ingredients create an unpleasant burning sensation on the animal’s tongue, which ensures it won’t want to come back for a second helping! Spray Critter Ridder® in your garden, in trash cans, or wherever you see signs of animal activity. One application can last a few months, so no frequent reapplication is necessary.
How to Get Rid of Chipmunks Using Traps
You can also attempt to trap pesky chipmunks. The line of smaller Havahart® Easy Set® Animal Traps allows you to catch these critters easily and humanely. Simply bait the trap with chipmunk favorites like prune pits, popcorn or grains, and place it in the area where chipmunk activity is present. The trap’s smooth internal edges prevent the frightened trapped animal from injuring itself. The one-hand release feature also makes it easy to release the animal back into the wild after capture.
Knowing how to get rid of chipmunks effectively can help you protect your home and garden from these small but destructive pests.