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How to Deal with Nuisance Wild Animals

May 6, 2013


  05/07/13 Nuisance wild animals are a common problem in the spring, and Hoosiers have several options for dealing with them.

People can always call a licensed wild animal control company. For the name of a licensed company, visit

Hoosier landownersor tenants also can trap and release or kill raccoons, skunks, opossums, squirrels, beavers, muskrats, minks, long-tailed weasels, and foxes on their own property without a permit if these animals are damaging that property.

 Live traps for capturing animals can be purchased from garden-supply or home improvement stores. Be careful when live-trapping wild animals in the spring because they may have young.

If the animal is to be released after capture, it must be released in the county of capture and cannot be kept as a pet, sold, traded or given to another person. Releasing wild animals on a city, county or state property may be illegal or require written permission; contact proper officials before releasing wild animals on public property. 

To keep wild animals from becoming a nuisance, DNR wildlife officials recommend the following:

            — Pick up dog and cat food at night and keep birdfeeders out of the reach of wild animals or bring in birdfeeders at night.

— Install a commercial chimney cap made of sheet metal and heavy screen. Repair soffits to prevent access to attics, and install strong, metal vent covers.

            — Prune tree limbs at least 10 feet away from the roof.

— Buy heavy metal garbage cans with lockable lids; otherwise, keep garbage cans indoors as much as possible.

— Install metal skirting around the bottoms of decks.

— Provide shelter structures for fish in ornamental ponds and water gardens; cover the pond during the night with metal screening.

Nuisance Canada geese also can create problems in the spring when nesting. You can oil the eggs of Canada geese or remove their nests after registering with the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service. A link to the USFWS goose egg and nest destruction registration page is available at

A list of licensed nuisance waterfowl control operators that are trained to remove adult geese is at

Pond owners experiencing problems with otters should contact their district wildlife biologist for more information or to request a special control permit.


One Response to “ How to Deal with Nuisance Wild Animals ”

  1. Thor on May 7, 2013 at 5:05 am

    Why not just let the property owners defend their property from destructive critters?

    How about a Castle Law against animals? Wild animals should not be moving into residential areas. As the article notes they do pose a hazard to the people who live there both through physical confrontation and spreading of diseases.

    The ‘solutions’ they post tend to be of the ‘no cost is too great for someone else’ variety. And most people who oppose property owners rights of defense are usually in the nature is Disney camp of awww, aint it cute, and I don’t care if it eats YOUR landscaping, destroys YOUR garden, lives in YOUR attic. Just like those cost is no object solutions, no amount of pain someone else endures is too much for them.