Porcupine Control

Porcupine Control, Trapping & Removal Services

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Shy, solitary porcupines are among the largest rodents in North America, second only to beavers. As nocturnal herbivores, they have poor eyesight and rely strongly on their heightened senses of smell and hearing to locate food and avoid danger. While not typically dangerous to humans, they can be nuisances due to their feeding habits.

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Porcupines are easily recognized by the yellow or white quills that stand out against their brown or black fur. These slow-moving animals have stout, compact bodies with small heads, black eyes, and short ears. About the size of a large house cat, they average around 15 pounds and grow to about 2 to 3 feet in length with a 6 to 11 inch long tail. This specially adapted tail is extremely muscular, which helps porcupines balance in trees. Likewise, the soles of their feet are rough to make climbing easier.

DIET

The diet of porcupines varies seasonally and by region. In the summer, they feast on buds, flowers, leaves and small twigs. Instead of hibernating during winter when these food sources are not available, porcupines simply adapt, eating bark and pine needles. Feeding rates also change according to the weather, with the pests eating more during the fall to store energy for colder months.

HABITAT

Porcupines primarily live in coniferous forests and wooded areas along streams. Dispersed through the western and northern portions of the U.S., they have a home range of approximately 25 to 35 acres. Porcupines typically live in hollow logs or groundcover, though they may also use trees if no other shelter is available. Since they do not sleep in the same trees they feed on, mixed forests are their preferred habitats.

TREATMENT SOLUTIONS

ENTRY INTO HOMES OR BUSINESSES

ENTRY INTO HOMES OR BUSINESSES

Landscaped lawns full of trees and bushes are attractive areas for porcupines to forage for food and rest. Sugar maples, beeches, aspens, and other conifers are their preferred food sources, so homeowners with these varieties of trees may find themselves having frequent run-ins with the pests.

PROBLEMS & DAMAGE

PROBLEMS & DAMAGE

In addition to chewing on trees and wooden structures, porcupines may also cause damage when seeking salt. Because their summer diets are rich in potassium, the pests need sodium for a counterbalance. To consume the salt residue left by commercial de-icing products, porcupines may gnaw on houses, automobiles, and plywood, causing damage. These pests can also be dangerous. When touched, porcupines’ barbed quills become painfully embedded in the skin. Since quills can work their way through muscle, risk of serious injury increases if they are not removed properly.

PREVENTION & EXCLUSION

PREVENTION & EXCLUSION

In order to keep porcupines from damaging property, avoid using nut- or fruit-bearing trees, especially coniferous ones, or excessive ground cover in yard landscaping. Since they are also drawn to salt residue, it is recommended to wash cars frequently.

TRAPPING & REMOVAL

TRAPPING & REMOVAL

There are no effective porcupine repellants commercially available. While trapping is possible, safely removing the pests when captured and attaining the proper trapping licenses can be difficult. Due to these issues, it is best to contact local Trutech wildlife experts for effective, safe, and humane porcupine removal.


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