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Catching critters taking cover in your attic

News 12 First at Five, October 21, 2009

AUGUSTA---It happens every year. When the temperatures drop, wild animals look for warmth--sometimes in your attic. When the great outdoors comes indoors, Gino Theobald of Advanced Services for Pest Control goes to work. News 12 went along with Gino as he repaired critter damage to a home damaged by woodpeckers, bats, and squirrels.

"It's getting cold out, and the animals want in your home," Gino said. "Squirrels do a lot of damage. Bats are about the worst. Bats are great to have, but they're not great to have in your house. They carry a lot of disease, and the guano's just so toxic, it's--especially if you have kids--it's terrible."

With some special foam insulation and some good old fashioned carpentry work, Gino sealed up gaps left by animals and returned the habitat to the humans.

You might feel uneasy at the thought of critters in the house, but it's something pest control companies like Advanced Services see every day.

"On a daily basis I'm dealing with bats, squirrels, opossums, raccoons...occasionally we get snake calls," Gino said. "We haven't gotten any bear calls. I was hoping when they were over in Evans that somebody'd call me, but no," he laughed.

The key, Gino says, is to act quickly.

"It doesn't take long for a squirrel to do damage in your house," Gino said. "They love to chew wires. Squirrels have to chew. That's how they keep their front teeth down."

Pest control specialists don't recommend using poison because of health hazards to you or your pets.

If you think your attic is home to more than storage, or if you find bite and chew marks around your home, it's probably time to talk to an expert.

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