Animals That Are a Common Nuisance in the Winter

animals in home during winterThe Chicago area is in the middle of one of the coldest winters to ever hit this area and as a result, people are not the only ones looking indoors for shelter.

Many different types of wildlife throughout the area are looking for shelter from the winter weather and may end up invading your home.  Certain species require homeowners to take extra precautions to keep them out of their homes beyond just simple pest proofing.

Be sure to always look out for signs of an animal intrusion such as bite marks, droppings, and scratching noises, and you can avoid attracting animals to your property by keeping your trash well sealed and your trees and bushes trimmed back from the house.

If you do discover an animal intrusion in your home this winter, please call Attic Solutions immediately to have a wildlife professional remove the animal.

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The following species are the most common nuisances in the winter to watch for with some ideas for preventing them from invading your home.

Common Winter Animal Invaders


These nuisance species are found throughout the United States and generally vary in size from 2 to 7½ inches in length with a wingspan of up to 15 inches.

They can be found roosting in dark, secluded areas which makes them attracted to indoor spaces like attics and eaves.  Bat infestations can be troublesome for a household because their droppings can damage property and they also carry diseases such as rabies which could be spread to humans.

Bats are a protected species in Illinois so it is best to call Attic Solutions to eliminate a bat infestation.


These marsupials are another common winter nuisance that invade homes.  They can grow to be up to 40 inches in length and are usually found throughout the U.S. in swamps, woods, or open fields in abandoned burrows and tree cavities.

Opossums commonly enter homes through the attic or garage and they have also been known to build nests under decks and porches.

The best way to prevent opossums from invading your home is to seal off the area under your deck or porch and locate and seal potential entry points in the garage, attic, or basement.


Raccoons are one of the most difficult nuisance animals to deal with as they can grow to be up to three feet in length as adults.  They typically build dens in secluded spots such as hollow trees, burrows, and rock crevices and may even build dens in an attic or garage.  Food and garbage attract raccoons onto a property and once they get into your home, they can cause significant property damage and spread diseases to humans such as rabies and salmonella.  Raccoon infestations can be prevented by keeping food and garbage well sealed but due to their crafty nature, raccoons should be handled by the professionals at Attic Solutions.

Tree Squirrels:

Tree squirrels are common throughout all regions of the U.S. and depending on the specific species; they can vary in color and size from 6 to 15 inches in length.  They build nests in tree cavities and on tree branches but when the temperature drops, they begin looking for warmth in basements or attics.

The biggest threat that squirrels pose is the threat of significant property damage caused by chewing on drywall, telephone lines, and electrical wires which could be a fire hazard.

Homeowners can help prevent squirrels from invading their homes by locating and sealing entry points in the basement and attic but you should contact Attic Solutions if a squirrel infestation is discovered in your home.

As soon as you suspect you may have a animal infestation, call us immediately at 847-464-1861 for removal.

We are trained professionals and equipped to deal with animal exclusion and removal, including humane live animal trapping (never poisons!). We will remove the animal and fix any property damage they may have caused. Click to read more about animal removal services from Attic Solutions.