Andy, The Wildlife Trapper

Live Animal Trapping, Dead Animal Removals,
Attic and Crawlspace Clean Outs
Serving Santa Barbara, Goleta, Carpinteria, Montecito, Summerland, and Ojai
Call for a free inspection 805-794-9289
   

Andy, the Wildlife Trapper

I am a wildlife trapper who specializes in the removal of skunks, raccoons, opossums, ground squirrel, woodpile rats, and cottontails. I use only humane havahart traps. I am licensed by the Department of Fish and Wildlife to trap in Santa Barbara County. I trap seven days a week in order to ensure that you get the most efficient service possible.

Services include:

  • Live Animal Trapping and Removal
  • Attic and Crawlspace Clean Outs
  • Dead Animal Removals

For a free inspection, call me at 805-794-9289.

Additional Wildlife Information



In Santa Barbara County, residential and commercial areas are overrun by nuisance wildlife. Although we may not actually see these animals, we do see the damage that they cause. Many people can claim that they have had midnight garbage can raids, damage to personal property, or pets who have been attacked by wild animals. Although these signs of wildlife can be upsetting, the diseases that wild animals can carry are even more serious. Wild animals in Santa Barbara County can be infected with roundworm, rabies, and canine distemper to name just a few.

   Wild animals can be very dangerous and you should not attempt to remove them from your property yourself. I have had extensive experience in catching and removing wildlife from roofs to the crawlspaces underneath houses. I would be happy to talk with you about your wildlife problem. I know that we can get your problem solved quickly and painlessly.


THE RACCOON

Raccoons are nocturnal animals that can cause substantial damage to private property. They frequently damage lawns, gardens, fruit trees, and even attics, roofs, and garages. Unfortunately, pets can be endangered with raccoons around. They are very strong and territorial animals and have been known to attack dogs and cats.

The raccoons in Santa Barbara County can be infected with several types of parasites and diseases. The roundworm known as Baylisascaris procyonis is a parasite that can cause blindness, neurological damage, and even death in infected humans.

Microscopic eggs are passed in raccoon feces and when ingested, the larvae become active in the intestines and pass to other parts of the body via the bloodstream. The central nervous system is a common site of infection.

Raccoons tend to form latrines (sites where feces accumulate). They prefer horizontal surfaces like roofs, decks, attics, and forks in trees. Although most people will not come into direct contact with raccoon feces, small animals and young children who either touch or ingest the feces could become infected. The eggs are highly resistant to the environment and can survive hot and dry weather for years. Unfortunately, there is no known treatment for Baylisascaris procyonis and the only way to prevent infection is to remove the animals and the feces.

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THE STRIPED SKUNK

The striped skunk is a crepuscular (active during twilight hours) animal found all over Santa Barbara County. They have an omnivorous diet which includes mice, eggs, carrion, insects, grubs and berries. The striped skunk makes its home in a burrow, under buildings, boulders, or rock piles.

The skunk is known for its foul odor which is secreted from two anal scent glands. The secretion consists of a mixture of sulfur-containing chemicals that smell like a combination of rotten eggs, garlic, and burnt rubber. Skunks can spray up to 10 feet with a high degree of accuracy. Their secretion not only smells bad, it can cause nausea, can produce severe burning, and even temporary blindness.

The striped skunk is attracted to residential areas due to the availability of food, water, and shelter. They may take up residence under porches, decks, and homes. They may also cause damage to personal property when they dig in gardens to find grubs and other insects. They may also roll back sections of sod in order to find a meal.

Skunks are potential carriers of several diseases including leptospitosis, canine distemper, and canine hepatitis. However, they are the primary carrier of rabies in California. Rabies is a viral disease that causes neurological damage and the breakdown of the central nervous system if not treated. It is transmitted through the bite of an infected animal. Skunks infected by rabies tend to display specific behavioral symptoms including tame and listless behavior and wandering around during the day. They also have a lack of fear for humans and pets and show aggressive behavior. Outside pets have the greatest risk of contracting rabies from infected skunks and are urged to get a rabies vaccine at a local veterinary clinic.

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CALIFORNIA GROUND SQUIRREL

California ground squirrels are diurnal (active during the day) and make their home by digging tunnels beneath the ground.  The tunnels consist of extensive networks that can house up to several dozen individuals. California ground squirrels forage for food above ground near the entrances to their burrow. They are primarily vegetarians and feed on green grasses, herbaceous plants, seeds, and nuts.

Ground squirrels quickly become tame in areas inhabited by humans. They will enter gardens and eat vegetables at the seedling stage and also feed off ornamental plants and trees. The California ground squirrel has also been known to gnaw on plastic sprinkler heads and irrigation lines.

The burrows can also cause serious damage to personal property. These tunnels can destroy lawns and pose as a hazard to pedestrians and livestock. When the ground squirrels burrow around the roots of trees, these roots may become dessicated and eventually cause the tree to topple over. Also, burrows beneath buildings may cause enough damage that repairs are necessary.

Squirrels are also susceptible to and carriers of Yersinia pestis which causes the Bubonic Plague. The disease is carried by the fleas that reside on the squirrels and is transmitted when the infected flea takes a blood meal. Note: if and unusual number of squirrels are dead, notify your public health officials immediately.

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THE PYGMY COTTONTAIL

The pygmy cottontail is the smallest rabbit in North America. They are nocturnal animals that forage for its food. Pygmy cottontails are herbivores that survive on a diet of sagebrush, tulips, flower buds, and vegetables. They are also night-time garden raiders and can destroy residential gardens.

Pygmy cottontails prefer to live in dense, tall stands of sagebrush. They are one of the very few rabbits in North America that dig its own burrows.

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THE OPOSSUM

The opossum is the only marsupial in North America. It is a nocturnal animal that has a very broad diet. They eat mainly carrion, however, they will also eat insects, reptiles, birds, fruit, garbage, and pet food. Their broad diet allows them to take advantage of many sources of food provided by human habitation and can be found in areas inhabited by humans.

Opossums that make their home near areas inhabited by humans can be distressing due to their smelly nesting habits, foul smelling anal discharge, and fights with outside pets over pet food. They are also potential carriers of several diseases including tuberculosis, salmonella, spotted fever, and yellow fever. They are important reservoirs of leptospirosis (hemorrhagic jaundice) in wildlife and humans. Leptospirosis is transmitted through the urine and feces of infected animals. Humans can contract the disease by eating unwashed produce, fallen fruit, of by putting unwashed hands into their mouths. Opossums are also heavily infected with ticks, fleas, mites, and lice whigh are vectors for several diseases.

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THE WOODPILE RAT

The woodpile rat, also known as the dusky footed woodrat, is native to the Santa Barbara area. Woodpile rats make their homes in domed dens in trees, bushes, and shrubs. These "woodpiles" can reach several feet high and are often found in clusters of several dozen forming communities. They are similar in appearance to the common rat species except they have larger ears and eyes, softer coats, furred tails, and can grow much larger in size.

The dens of woodpile rats can damage surrounding areas and are also a big attraction for predators such as snakes, bobcats, and coyotes.

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