Dear PoPville – Pest Control


“Dear PoPville,

Does anyone in the DC area have recommendations for a pest control company that can remove squirrels and/ or other wildlife from a DC row house attic? Any best practices to know about? We’ve lived in our Shaw row house for 5 plus years now and this is the first year we seem to have issues (or at least loud scratching coming from the attic).”

11 Comment

  • We were having the same trouble you describe in the rowhouse I rent. The property owners use PestNow for regular bug treatments, and they were very effective in helping us deal with rodents in the house, too (rats in the wall + raccoons in the attic).

  • Adcocks Trapping Service:
    I haven’t used them in about 10 years but they are still around and they were VERY good. They will also advise you when (and how, if needed) to seal the entry points to be sure you don’t seal any critters in instead of out!

  • eeeeeeeeekkkkKK! That picture about gave me a heart attack!

  • PoP – I love that you use the bat picture as your stock photo for all pest control related posts!

  • Anthony at AR1 is fantastic — 703.349.5059

  • Van with Blazin’ Pest Control has done a great job for me in the past. I’ve been in Logan for 10 years and he has been the guy to keep us pest free. Well, almost. One rat that he managed to dispose of in a single day. Great exterminator. Highly recommend him.

  • i had a problem with squirrels in my porch roof. it was fixed by squirting ammonia around the opening and within the cavity. they hate the smell and left within the day. perhaps you could put a bowl of ammonia in your attic and, if possible, squirt some around the suspected entry point to chase them out. just be sure to address how they got in there to begin with.

    also, i’ve mistaken mice for squirrels before. it’s amazing how loud a tiny little mouse can scratch…

  • Second Adcocks. They were very professional an helpful with our raccoons.

  • I work at the HSUS, and would recommend checking out our Humane Wildlife Services.

    Passing along some advice from one of our Humane Wildlife Services staff: Squirrels are in their second baby season (they have one in early spring and late summer/fall). The noise you are hearing is likely mom with her dependent young who are probably around 2-3 months old. The best way to solve the problem effectively and humanely is to use an eviction solution.

    A company should do a site assessment to locate all the entry points and make sure that it is squirrels. Squirrels need but 2-3 inches in diameter to access an attic or roof void and they commonly use roof vents, gable vents, and the roof line behind the gutter if the opportunity presents itself.

    Solving these kinds of intrusions at this time of year requires a comprehensive approach: Identifying all of the entry points, ascertaining whether there are young (and then removing them from the
    void if present- physically or by using a 1-way door if old enough), getting the adult out, closing up the entry point(s) and if there are young: reuniting them with the adult on the outside of the structure so that mom does not think they are still inside. If the mom thinks her young are still inside she can do significant damage to the house trying to get to them- chewing on exclusion material or new work that was just completed to close up the entry hole.

    A good guideline or question to ask is about disposition: what will be done with the squirrel(s) after they are trapped? Euthanized? Translocated? Trapping mom will leave baby squirrels within the wall void to die and studies have shown that animals that are translocated outside of their home range have a very low chance of survivability as they are unfamiliar with food sources, denning and shelter sites, and are in direct competition with the animals already there. Besides being inhumane it is an inappropriate way to manage wildlife as diseases etc. can be introduced into populations that did not previously have them.

    You can find oure more at:

  • I’ll third the Adcock’s recc. Squirrels are really hard to get rid of – good luck. Also, you may want to coordinate with your party wall neighbors. If one of you has an opening they can easily make their way into your roof/attic through the top of the wall. For a serious infestation ammonia and mothballs won’t work and smell horrible.

  • You can refer to Dixon’s Pest Control, they are very good and you can contact them for best services in DC.

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