First, state and federal laws protect nearly all wildlife. This is an important statement. These laws are designed to monitor how species are harvested, trapped and hunted. These laws are all there to protect wildlife from being harmed or harassed too. This includes birds with the Migratory Bird Treaty Act. When dealing with nuisance wildlife, you need to review the legality of the situation. In Georgia, you would need to contact the Wildlife Resources Division of the Georgia Department of Natural Resources to check on any legal issue with wildlife removal. You may also want to contact a Nuisance Wildlife Control Operator (NWCO) to remove nuisance wildlife. These folks are individuals who are licensed by the state and run a wildlife control business. With any business, they will charge for their services and normally can be found in the phone book and maybe online.
If you wish to try to take care of your own nuisance wildlife issue, remember this simple rule. Wildlife need food, water and shelter. Normally, if you remove one of these needs then the animal will normally move on. For example, if you are seeing a lot of snakes, you probably have a rodent food source. Treat the rodents, then you probably won’t see the snakes. Many citizens will call about deer eating their ornamentals. You may have to start planting items that are less likely to be on the deer food change list. We have publications that can make those suggestions.
Habitat modification is one option for the homeowner. If you know the species of the animal causing the damage then learn about their requirements and remove that from the property. If you are over run with squirrels, you may have a bird feeder you are keeping full that is providing a great attraction for the squirrels. You may have to remove it for a while or research on making it squirrel proof. Modification may mean removing attractive habitat where you know wildlife are hiding. Keep grass mowed to correct heights and remove piles of firewood, bricks, rocks, etc. Move animals like hiding places. Remove that, and you are removing shelter.
Excluding using fencing or other material could be an option. The larger the animals, the taller and stronger the fence may be. Some people have put up fences as tall as 10 feet to keep deer out of a vegetable garden. Chicken wire, and even hardware cloth, can be effective on those smaller animals that like to dig. Again, learn about the animal you are trying to discourage. Electric fencing can help, but make sure you are mindful of pets and children. They can get shocked too.
Repellents may be an option. According to Mengak, many repellents are widely used to discourage wildlife, but keep this in mind. If a product claims some unbelievable success, it may be too good to be true. Many repellents will work in some issues, but not in others. Plus, they may work for a while, but loose intensity. If you want to go the repellent route, you need to read up and follow the label instructions. Remember many of the taste repellents are not to be used on crops or vegetables so read the label. For more information contact Gordon County Extension at 706-629-8685 email@example.com.