Alvin, Simon, and Theodore are simply adorable on our television screen. Many homeowners have a different opinion. Most gardeners consider them little more than cute but plant damaging rodents, that they need to get rid of. Consequentially, chipmunk control is a gardening necessity.
Hence the conundrum: How to control and get rid of chipmunks, without letting the kids or the grandkids know what you are doing?
Homeowners and home gardeners struggle to get rid of chipmunks. If they are in your area, it may be a constant struggle to both control their population, and to keep them away from plants, vegetables, and the bulbs you so carefully planted for next spring. Like their cousin, the squirrel, they gnaw and chew through wood and plastic, and anything not made of metal. You may also find them in your bird feeder, selectively going after the seeds.
So, without telling the kids, here are some methods you can try for controlling chipmunks:
1. Trapping: Use Hav-a-hart traps. Chipmunks can’t resist peanut butter or a small handful of peanuts as bait.
Important: Before you trap chipmunks or other animals, check your local laws. Sometimes, localities allow you to trap animal pests but do not allow you to transfer or release an animal into another area. In these cases, the local animal control office must be notified for removal from your property
2. Pepper Sprays and other sprays discourage them. One taste or smell and they scamper off to your neighbor’s garden. You can use most sprays on vegetable plants and fruit. A lingering “pepper” taste may be detectable at harvest. Apply every one to two weeks and after every rain.
Find an easy Pepper spray recipe
3. Fences and screens: These have limited effectiveness. If the plant can be completely screened, you can keep chipmunks out. In most cases this is impractical, and it is also not aesthetically pleasing. The fencing must also be metal. Chipmunks will effortlessly chew through wood and plastic netting.
4. Cats: Cats are natural predators, helping to control the local chipmunk population in your area.