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Needing to relocate Alvin & his family

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  • Needing to relocate Alvin & his family

    I've got a chipmunk (and his family, I'm thinking) that need to be removed from under my house. He was cute for the first oh, 10 minutes while he chowed down on my bird seed but now, game is on.

    In addition to eating all the bird seed (BOSS, nonetheless), he has destroyed some of our landscaping (digging tunnels underneath everything) and I just noticed tonight that he ATE my tomatoes. A ripe tomato too. Uggh. And there is some tunneling going on in the pots (all my tomatoes are potted).

    I desperately need to remove Mr. Alvin and he's family. While he's absolutely adorable, he's wrecking havoc on my landscape and tomatoes. And I'm proud of my tomatoes - I started them from seed back in January.

    Any suggestions? My DH thinks the BB gun/pellet gun is the way to go, but we live inside the city limits. Shooting off guns is a big no-no. I do have a dog, but he's leashed at all times. So for the most part, any "poison"-type bait should be okay. The cats are indoors only. My dad's method doesn't jive with me (SSS but no shooting) and well, I can't do that. I can live with baiting though.
    Proud owner of Gus & Gringo.
    See G2's blog

  • #2
    I tolerate a lot of chipmunks around my garden and where my horses are kept. I notice their presence by holes and caches (usually between my saddle and saddle pad, sigh) but I've never found myself so aggravated that I sought to bugger them off. I have heard many stories of chipmunks taming easily too and becoming downright precious, though I don't advocate taming wildlife.

    I'm not in your shoes though, and they can be very zealous diggers.

    If I had one going after my tomatoes, I'd probably just spray fish fertilizer or Safer soap on them to make them unpalatable. And if I had one tunneling where I really didn't want it, I'd probably just put fertilizer or rosemary or garlic down the hole to discourage him coming back, or flush his tunnels with water a few times until he moves off. They are sensitive creatures and hang their little hats where they feel safe. Continually disturb their home and they will almost always move off.

    If I felt the need to remove him from the premises, my suggestion would be to just trap him and relocate. The simple cardboard box, stick on a yank string and pile of bait will work just fine, especially if he's on your deck you can stay comfortably inside your home while you trap him. A stiff piece of cardboard to slide under the box after you've caught him would work out just fine, then you can walk him a few hundred yards away in the woods, or drive him to a park to release him. Just the simple act of rousting him from his home should make him uncomfortable enough to seek other digs.

    Chipmunks do not fall under the same game laws as squirrels, they sometimes have no rules, sometimes are protected, so do at least check your state rules to be familiar with them before you do anything.

    If you feel he must die, shooting at that small of a target is NOT the way to go, more likely to wound him than kill him, even close they are a tough target. Save the bbs for clay and paper targets. A rat sized snap trap is a fast clean death.
    Being terrible at something is the first step to being truly great at it. Struggle is the evidence of progress.