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CostHelper > Home and Garden  > Home Maintenance & Moving > Animal Removal

Animal Removal Cost


How Much Does Animal Removal Cost?

 
low costDIY Removal: $5-$350high costProfessional Animal Removal: $200-$1,000+
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An attic, crawlspace, basement or even spaces inside walls can be an attractive shelter for a wide variety of wildlife. Depending on the region, potential uninvited animal houseguests might include squirrels, feral house cats, raccoons, skunks, opossums, armadillos or porcupines. Most city or county agencies do not offer any help removing these unwelcome squatters, so property owners are typically responsible for removing the animals, either themselves or by hiring a wildlife removal specialist. Also see separate articles on the specific costs of bat removal, mice or rat control, mole or gopher control and squirrel removal.

Typical costs:

  • Do-it-yourself removal is possible with animal traps that start at $5-$100 and can increase to $150-$350 for larger humane (catch and release) cages. For example, Havahart makes humane animal traps[1] that sell for $20-$100 or more. A wildlife rehabilitation or rescue organization can help arrange for its release. DoItYourself.com describes DIY squirrel removal[2] options.
  • Some wildlife removal companies offer telephone or internet coaching for $300-$320 an hour, charged in half-hour increments. "Coaching" means the company provides oral or written guidance for the customer's do-it-yourself animal identification and removal efforts. For example, BirdsAndAnimalControl.com offers coaching services for $150 per half hour, and also sells and ships DIY traps and supplies.
  • Professional animal removal can cost $200-$1,000 or more, depending on the type of animal and how hard it is to capture. Some companies charge a flat rate for a specific type of animal including repeated trips for setting and checking the trap, while others charge a minimum inspection or service call fee of $150-$250 for the first 30 minutes plus an hourly fee of $60-$250 after the first 30 minutes, depending on the services provided.. For example, Houston Wildlife Patrol in Texas charges $350 for a raccoon or opossum in the attic regardless of the number of trips required, but the price increases to $450 if a litter of baby raccoons is present, and there may be additional charges if the babies are more than four weeks old because they can be harder to trap.All State Animal Control[3] in Utah charges an evaluation/service fee plus hourly rates and estimates that complete raccoon removal averages $400-$600; skunk removal averages $300-$600; squirrel trapping typically costs $200-$500; feral cat trapping averages $300-$500; and the average beaver removal can be $500-$1,000.
  • Cleanup, repair, sanitizing and decontamination of the affected indoor area may be needed, and usually costs extra. It may also be necessary to make repairs to prevent future entrance by other animals. Repair and cleanup are usually quoted after the animal has been captured and removed. Costs can range from $100-$1,000 or more. For example, Wildlife Patrol in Florida charges a minimum of $300 for a typical attic decontamination.
Related articles: Mice or Rat Control, Bat Removal

What should be included:
  • Usually a wildlife removal company will charge for an initial evaluation to determine how to remove the animal. There might be another visit to bring and set the correct type of trap, and a third to remove the trap and animal after it's caught -- and possibly additional visits if more than one animal is involved. During the initial visit, the technician should explain what kind of animal is trespassing and the best way to remove it.
  • Often the first step is identifying the animal. Since many are nocturnal this often means making deductions based on paw prints, droppings or other clues. The Internet Center for Wildlife Damage Management offers fact sheets on how to identify and deal with armadillos[4] , feral house cats[5] , ground squirrels[6] , opossums[7] , raccoons[8] and skunks[9] . The ICWDM also provides links to sites providing information on different types of wildlife[10] .
Additional costs:
  • Expect to pay additional fees for after-business-hours emergency service calls. For example, Houseton Wildlife Patrol charges $129 for an initial inspection and trap setup and $249 or more after hours.
Shopping for animal removal:
  • Animal removal companies are generally a separate business from pest control services. Some pest control companies have a division that removes wildlife, but typically with a completely separate staff from its pest control services.
  • Search for wildlife removal experts through the National Wildlife Control Operators Association[11] or the National Wildlife Trapper Directory[12] .
  • Ask about training and experience, trapping methods, and whether the company works with wildlife rehabilitation or rescue groups. Check whether the company charges per animal or per visit, and if any other fees apply. The company should do an on-site inspection and provide a firm written estimate. The Humane Society of the United States lists tips for choosing a wildlife removal company[13] .
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External Resources:
  1.  www.havahart.com/store/live-animal-traps
  2.  www.doityourself.com/stry/permanent-squirrel-removal-without-killing-them
  3.  www.allstateanimalcontrol.com/pricing_utah.php
  4.  www.icwdm.org/wildlife/armadillo.asp
  5.  www.icwdm.org/wildlife/housecat.asp
  6.  www.icwdm.org/wildlife/groundsquirrels.asp
  7.  www.icwdm.org/wildlife/opossum.asp
  8.  www.icwdm.org/wildlife/raccoon.asp
  9.  icwdm.org/wildlife/skunk/skunks.asp
  10.  icwdm.org/Publications/WildlifePublications.asp
  11.  www.nwcoa.com/
  12.  www.247wildlife.com/wildlifetrapperdirectory.htm
  13.  www.humanesociety.org/animals/resources/tips/choosing_wildlife_control_company.html
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