Eight Critters That Could Be Living in Your Dirty Gutters

Cleaning out gutters is an essential part of homeownership. Neglecting this task can lead to leaks, mold issues, foundation problems, lawn damage and more. But one thing that’s not always brought up is the different critters in gutters you’ll have to deal with if you fail to clean your gutters.

Here are a few of the most common critters you could stumble across:

  • Birds: The most common critters we see in gutters are our feathered friends. Birds love gutters because they provide a bit of a shelter from predators, and it’s easy for them to find materials to make their nests. Be sure to clean gutters before birds lay eggs, or they may become aggressive.
  • Squirrels: A squirrel can easily hop from overhanging trees down onto your roof and eventually your gutters. From there, it’s not that unreasonable to think they can make it inside your attic! Besides keeping gutters clean, reduce the chance of a squirrel infestation by trimming your overhanging tree limbs.
  • Chipmunks: It’s just as easy for chipmunks to make it down into your gutters. Again, they could find their way into your attic if you’re not careful. On top of cleaning your gutters, consider installing gutter guards to make it a bit harder for chipmunks to make a home.
  • Feral cats: Believe it or not, stray cats are some of the other critters in gutters you could encounter. Gutters provide shelter and are a good hunting ground for small rodents. Call the local animal shelter if you find evidence of cats in your gutters—they’ll know how to deal with the cats.
  • Possums: Although they might try to play dead if you find possums in your gutters, they’re still a big problem. Possums can have up to 20 young per litter, which results in a significant infestation rather quickly. Make your gutters a less hospitable home by cleaning them out twice a year.
  • Lizards: Gutter debris is a breeding ground for flies, mosquitoes and other insects. As it happens, these pests are the ideal dinner for many different lizards. Lizards can easily scale the side of your home, where they’ll find an endless buffet of pests in your gutters.
  • Snakes: Some snakes are capable of climbing up a downspout to reach a gutter system, where they hunt for mice and other rodents mentioned above. The best way to prevent a scary snake infestation is to clean out those gutters.
  • Plants: Although they’re not critters, you could have plants growing up in your dirty gutters. The nutrient-rich debris in gutters provides the perfect environment to grow weeds, small plants and even flowers. Although they might not cause damage, plants in your gutters is a sign you need to clean them.

Consider installing seamless gutters

If your gutters are falling apart and have seen better days, consider upgrading to a seamless gutter system. Seamless gutters are custom-fitted for each home and require less maintenance, so you can spend less time keeping gutters clean.

Call J & B Air Conditioning, Heating, & Gutters to get a quote for your new seamless gutter system.

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