Defending The Perimeter

As I mentioned in my last post, coming home to find a random chipmunk tail in the middle of your kitchen floor is something that will give you a moment’s pause.


Something else that will stop you in your tracks? Seeing a tail-less chipmunk sitting on your patio the next morning. Mocking you.


I mean, really?

Clearly the cat had something to do with this, but I still decided it was time to defend the perimeter of the house with the two best tools I had on hand…


Steel wool and spray foam.

I identified about three places around the foundation that were clearly rodent-related B&E points. The main one was here, on the patio:


I started by shoving a bunch of steel wool in the hole.


I’ve heard this is a good mouse-deterrent when mixed with caulk, and that copper wool is even better. I’m hoping the combination of steel wool and foam insulation will at least slow them down long enough for the cat to give them a piece of his mind.


This, of course, is a temporary solution. I’m planning to mortar in around the foundation, and patch or replace the siding next summer when I re-do the siding on the addition. In the interim, however, I’d like to be able to walk into my house without finding random chipmunk parts lying around.

I also found this gaping hole in one of the basement windows.


Clearly replacing the wood is going to be necessary here as well. But for the moment, more steel wool and a completely improper use of spray foam.


I’ve also recently noticed the cat staring fixedly at one of the radiators in the kitchen, and sure enough when I got down there to examine…


That looks suspiciously like it was done with rodent teeth and not a jigsaw. So… more spray foam.

Since I was working from home yesterday and didn’t need to spend the hour between 7:30 and 8:30 AM driving into the office, I did the only reasonable thing for a person in her pajamas with half a can of spray foam left could do at 8:00 AM…


Climbed onto the roof.

I used the rest of the can to fill in this hole on the side of the house, which has clearly housed a couple of birds this spring.


I have a piece of metal flashing to cover the hole as well, but I need the proper caulk to fix it into place for now.

This weekend I’m also planning to spray around the foundation with some bug repellant, even though that hasn’t been quite the problem it was earlier this spring.

For now, I’m going to set up the chipmunk trap, yet again, and hope that one day soon the house becomes more of a place habitable by humans, and less of an indoor wildlife preserve. Hey, one can hope.

10 Responses

  1. I spent last summer slightly unhinged by the stealthy, random, unannounced appearance of bats in my living room, bedroom, etc. I’m not one of those scream-y freaked out girls about critters in general, but I don’t care to share living quarters with them. Soldier on, spray foam warrior!

    1. And bats! I feel you there… All the sudden you start ducking and running around your house for no reason.

  2. A friend’s grandmother used to sprinkle Borax around the perimeter of her house to thwart bugs and it worked. I just googled and a mixture of borax and sugar water left out in a bowl ( I prefer outside) will attract ants and they will imbibe and return to nests to share the “kool-aid” and die. It may repel zombies…still researching!

  3. I think I’d rather see the whole chipmunk cavorting(sp?) than chipmunk parts!

  4. If it makes you feel any better I spent the weekend at my cabin battling mice and carpenter ants!!

  5. Ok, the tail-less chipmunk still has me laughing! Poor thing is going to be an embarrassment to his chipmunk friends.

  6. Man, I can just hear the story that chipmunk is telling its friends about the close call with death and escaping the cat… with everything but its tail. And then mocking you. What a ballsy chipmunk.

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