Removal and control of chipmunks is easily accomplished by most people. The 102 Tomahawk Live Trap are common traps used to trap chipmunks. We also carry Squirrel Butter Bait and Squirrel Trail Mix both work well for chipmunk trapping. For best results, put the Squirrel Butter Bait on a piece of bread or cracker, fold it over and place behind treadle. Then dribble Squirrel Trail Mix out of the trap door and continue outside of the trap about a foot so the animal will smell it and follow it into the trap. We find most of the body gripping kill type traps are too large to use for chipmunks, however, the Little Killer Squirrel Trap and the A24 have worked very well for trapping chipmunks.
Please note: There are no poisons on the market labeled for chipmunks.
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General Biology, Reproduction and Behavior
Before you start chipmunk removal and control it is important for you to understand a little more about this little critter.
The home range of a chipmunk may be up to 1/2 acre (0.2 ha). Defending this area is done only by the adults. They will defend a territory of about 50 feet (15.2 m) around the burrow entrance. We find most Chipmunks are active during the early morning and late afternoon.
The Chipmunk burrows often are well-hidden near objects or buildings. They use objects like stumps, wood piles or brush piles, basements, and garages. Their burrow entrance is usually about 2 inches (5 cm) in diameter. They leave no obvious mounds of dirt around the entrance. They carry the excess dirt in it’s cheeks and spread it around the burrow. This makes the burrow entrance less conspicuous.
In most cases, the chipmunk’s main tunnel is 20 to 30 feet (6 m to 9 m) in length, but complex burrow systems occur where cover is sparse. Their burrow systems normally include a nesting chamber, and one or two food storage chambers. They will also have various side pockets connected to the main tunnel, and separate escape tunnels.
With the onset of cold weather, the chipmunk enters a restless hibernation and are relatively inactive from late fall through the winter months. Chipmunks do not enter a deep hibernation as do ground squirrels, but rely on the cache of food they have brought to their burrow. Some individuals become active on warm, sunny days during the winter. Most chipmunks emerge from hibernation in early March.
Chipmunk pups appear above ground when they are 4 to 6 weeks old–2/3 the size of an adult. Young will leave the burrow at 6 to 8 weeks.
Chipmunk Damage and Damage Identification
Throughout their North American range, chipmunks are considered minor agricultural pests. Most conflicts with chipmunks are nuisance problems. When chipmunks are present in large numbers they can cause structural damage by burrowing under patios, stairs, retention walls, or foundations. They may also consume flower bulbs, seeds, or seedlings, as well as bird seed. Put bird seed, grass seed, and pet food in rodent-proof storage containers if the problem exists. In parts of the U.S., chipmunks and tree squirrels cause considerable damage to maple sugar tubing systems by gnawing the tubes.
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