Project Wildlife is a proud partner of The Humane Society of the United States program, Wild Neighbors. For additional resources on coexisting with wildlife in your neighborhood, please visit the links below:
[ Wild Neighbors ] by The Humane Society of the United States
Humane solutions to wildlife conflicts
Learn how to reunite wildlife
Many unwanted encounters or situations involving wildlife on your property or in your home can be prevented. By following some simple steps, you can help deter wildlife from making their home in yours.
- Make sure garbage is stored properly in a container with a tight fitting lid or use straps to make loose lids secure
- Don't feed your pets outside or if you do remove dish after they have finished
- Clean up your pets feces as this can attract unwanted visitors
- Don't feed wildlife
- Make sure pet doors are secured between dusk and dawn
- If you are feeding birds you can spray seed and feeding structure with a food-grade pepper spray. Birds taste differently than mammals and so will not be harmed or repelled by this. Mammals are irritated by capsaicin, the active ingredient in peppers and will most likely stay away. This must be done frequently to insure success
- Keep clutter in your yard and garage to a minimum to prevent animals from using these areas for cover
- Solve and prevent rodent infestations. Rats and mice will attract other predators who may exploit the same openings in your home's exterior to gain access.
If you see or suspect a skunk or opossum is using an area underneath your house, deck or shed, please perform one or both of the following before closing off any holes or openings:
- Sprinkle a little corn starch or baking flour around the opening before sunset. The following morning observe the powder for any sign of disturbance like scraps or foot prints.
- Alternatively you can wad up some newspaper and fill the opening after sunrise and check the following morning to see if the newspaper is disturbed. If you find that there are tracks or the newspaper has been pushed away from the opening then you most likely have a wild visitor or guest.
The following is a recipe endorsed by the Humane Society of the United States for the eviction of Skunks and Opossums:
Spray a mixture of eight ounces of dish detergent, eight ounces of castor oil, and one gallon of water around the area where the skunk or opossum resides. This may take a few days. Be sure to use either of the methods mentioned above to make certain no one is left behind before blocking up the opening.
All mammals are irritated by pepper spray. Use food-grade capsaicin based products in or around any areas of concern including vegetable gardens as it will not harm them and is non-toxic. This must be performed regularly in order to be effective.
For other solutions and help with a wildlife situation involving your home, visit our Wildlife Extraction Page or contact Wildlife Extraction at 619-692-WILD (9453).
Wildlife Care Center
San Diego, CA 92110
Directions & Map
Open 7 days a week
(except Thanksgiving, Christmas, & New Year's Day)
Staff/Volunteer hours: 8:30a.m. - 5:00p.m.
Drop-off area is open 24/7.
Outside of San Diego County?
If you are outside of our geographical area, please visit the emergency page of Wildlife International or contact your local Department of Animal Control or state Fish and Game office.