Squirrels have been pilfering holiday decorations with increasing frequency from local homes, with everything from candy canes to inflatable snowmen taken by the animals. The reasons for the phenomenon are unclear, but experts suggest that squirrels are attracted to the colors and scents of the decorations, as well as shiny objects and anything that looks like food. Homeowners can deter squirrels from stealing their decorations by using string or wire to secure them, using plastic or inflatable decorations, or hanging them higher up on trees or buildings, and can recover stolen items by using humane traps baited with nuts or seeds.
Furry Bandits Strike Again: Squirrels Steal Decorations from Local Homes
As the holiday season approaches, many homeowners are excitedly decorating their houses with festive ornaments, lights, and wreaths. However, some sticky-fingered creatures are spoiling the fun for some residents. Squirrels, those cute, bushy-tailed animals that scurry along power lines and tree branches, are becoming notorious for stealing holiday decorations from local homes.
The Spike in Squirrel Thievery
According to homeowners in several regions across the country, squirrels have been pilfering their decorations with increasing frequency. These critters are targeting everything from candy canes lining driveways to glittering ornaments adorning trees. In some cases, they are even going after inflatable snowmen perched on front lawns.
While the exact reasons for the sudden rise in squirrel thievery are unknown, experts suggest that the creatures may be attracted by the colors and scents of the decorations. Additionally, squirrels are known to be attracted to shiny objects and anything that looks like food – even inedible ornaments that merely resemble nuts or seeds can tempt them to steal.
What Homeowners Can Do to Prevent Squirrel Theft
While observing the squirrels from a distance can be entertaining, nobody wants to wake up to find that their favorite holiday decorations have vanished. Fortunately, there are several steps homeowners can take to deter the furry thieves from stealing their décor:
- Switch out shiny or inedible ornaments for decorations that are duller and more natural-looking
- Secure decorations with strong strings or wire that squirrels can’t easily chew through
- Use plastic or inflatable decorations that won’t attract squirrels looking for food
- Hang decorations higher up on trees or on buildings where squirrels can’t reach them
What to Do If a Squirrel Steals Your Decorations
While it can be frustrating to lose your holiday décor to a pesky squirrel, there are some steps you can take to recover your stolen items:
- Check the area surrounding your home to see if you can spot the thief.
- Retrieve any decorations that have simply been knocked to the ground. Squirrels often misjudge the weight of an object and may let it drop as they try to carry it away.
- Borrow a humane trap from your local animal control agency and set it up around your home, baited with some nuts or seeds. With any luck, you’ll catch the culprit and can return your décor to its rightful place.
- Consider investing in motion-activated cameras or lights that will deter squirrels from approaching your home.
What do squirrels do with the decorations they steal?
Squirrels are known to horde food and other items that they find, so it’s possible that they are simply stockpiling your decorations for future use. It’s also possible that they are gnawing on or playing with the decorations as a form of entertainment.
Are there any decorations that squirrels won’t touch?
Squirrels tend to avoid decorations that are dull or natural-looking, as they are looking for bright or shiny things that resemble food or toys. Additionally, inflatable decorations and plastic items may not be as tempting to squirrels, as they won’t have the texture or smell of a natural food source.
Will squirrels always come back for more decorations?
It’s possible that a particularly persistent squirrel will keep returning to your yard for more decorations, but it’s also possible that they will move on to other sources of food or entertainment if they are deterred from your yard.
Is it illegal to trap or harm squirrels?
Squirrels are typically considered a nuisance animal and can be trapped with a permit from your local animal control agency. However, it is illegal to harm or kill squirrels without a permit, and homeowners should always take measures to trap them humanely.