What you need to know about chipmunks
Chipmunks are in lots of ways adorable, and harmless. However, they are as likely as any other wildlife creature to invade your home and your property, in which case they might not seem so great, since their presence can cause quite a bit of damage.
In this article, we’ll look at the things you might not know about chipmunks, both cute and not so cute.
1. Chipmunks are just pocket-sized squirrels.
As you might’ve guessed, chipmunks are in fact members of the squirrel family. However, they’re bite-sized squirrels, coming in at just 1 to 5 ounces (or 28 to 142 grams). They’re tiny but agile climbers known for their acorn-gathering habits.
In spite of their small size, chipmunks can actually gather up to 165 acorns a day. While that might not seem like a lot to you, imagine doing it if you were only about 100 grams yourself.
2. They can cause quite a bit of damage.
While chipmunks definitely score high on the cuteness ranking, they are responsible for quite a bit of damage to human properties, which is why it’s best to keep them away, if you can.
They thrive off of digging complex pathways and mazes, which puts their damage on par with that caused by intrusive moles. They create quite impressive burrows, with the main entrance often extending to up to 20 feet. Chipmunks can also be quite destructive for yards and gardens, which is why we generally recommend fencing your garden path. This will also protect it from other intrusive wildlife.
3. Chipmunks sleep for 15 hours a day.
While we tend to think of chipmunks as fast and highly energetic, it’s interesting to note that all that scurrying about is only done in nine hours a day, with the rest being dedicated to snoozing.
4. You should hire a pro, if you’ve got chipmunks.
Since chipmunks can cause quite a bit of damage, our advice would be to hire a pro like Gray Brothers Wildlife LLC for getting rid of chipmunks. We recommend focusing on a wildlife removal company that provides humane chipmunk removal services, and that won’t cause any actual harm to the chipmunks during the removal process.
5. Try a natural repellent.
If you’re worried about chipmunks on your property or in your garden patch, you can always try a chipmunk repellent. While we don’t recommend using a store bought chemical repellent (as this can contain dangerous chemicals), you can try concocting your own natural one.
While there is limited evidence that a natural repellent works efficiently, it might stave off a chipmunk invasion, at least to a certain extent. You can make your own repellent using crushed or pureed garlic, or hot peppers (or both, if you like), and combining them with water, and dishwasher soap.
You can spray this mixture on your garden patch, to keep chipmunks from attacking it. However, if you’re dealing with persistent chipmunks, it would be best to call a professional wildlife removal expert.
6. They have a lot of predators.
Since chipmunks are so tiny, pretty much any other carnivore that’s slightly larger than a chipmunk (which is most of them) will be hunting for them. That means foxes, coyotes, snakes, hawks, weasels, dogs, cats, racoons, bobcats, and pretty much any other wildlife you can think of is out to get the poor chipmunks.
Which is why we think you should always opt for humane chipmunk removal. They’ve got enough to worry about, already. On the other hand, that has made them the clever, resourceful and highly agile creatures they are today, so there’s always a good side.
Story Jessica Loticus