Removing an animal from the attic

| 15/04/2016

I have an animal in my attic. Who do I call to get it out?

Auntie’s answer: Since you didn’t mention what kind of animal you were trying to evict from your attic, I am guessing you haven’t seen it, only heard the patter (or possibly the thump) of non-human feet. I will go further to say that since you are writing me, and therefore willing to wait for a response instead of calling on all manner of emergency services, you are not worried so much as annoyed.

I will take another leap and suggest that we are probably dealing with a relatively small creature. I suppose it could also be a bat or bird flapping around, but either way, you are not in any imminent danger, except of being driven crazy by the noise above your head.

In general, to get rid of vermin such as rats, mice and the like, there are several companies that specialise in pest control, though the bulk of their jobs probably involve insects of various descriptions, which we don’t need to detail here. In addition, for assorted rodents, you can contact the Department of Environmental Health (DEH) to place baits by calling at 949-6696 or emailing DEH.

The Department of Agriculture (947-3090) can deal with rounding up stray dogs but they are equipped to handle other animals as well. A DoA representative explained that for livestock (for your sake, I hope there is not a cow living above you) or dogs and cats, which are known as “companion animals” under the Animals Law, his department is responsible for dealing with them. The DoA can be called on to seize the offending animal and impound it.

However, there are animals that are protected under the National Conservation Law as native species and these include owls, birds and bats, which are protected at all times. If any of these animals are in your attic, a Department of Environment official said you should not attempt to remove it; the creature needs to leave on its own. In addition, if there is a nest, you must wait until the baby fledges and it and the mother are able to leave before moving in to clear up any debris and close up the hole that enabled entry in the first place.

In case your attic is harbouring a bat, according to the National Trust for the Cayman Islands, they do not damage buildings, invade food or carry diseases, though their droppings cause odour problems. As with other animals, it is important to keep bats out and not trap them inside your roof. For more information about bats, click on this link to the National Trust website or call 949-0121. The folks at the Trust can recommend a company to rid your attic of bats or offer advice on how to do it yourself.

If you determine you are dealing with a protected species, you can also contact the Department of Environment at 949-8469 or by email.


Category: Ask Auntie

Comments (5)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    It was not an animal, it was me conducting covert surveillance of your entire house. Or not so covert. Glad all the cameras and microphones are in place now so I don’t have to go back.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Perhaps it is a bat in her belfry?

  3. Anonymous says:

    Maybe it’s the ghost of your intelligence still trapped in your thick skull. Poor Auntie, she must have the patience of Job and the compassion of Mother Teresa, to waste time answering you. The fact that you posted a comment means you have internet access so not having a phone book is no excuse for ignorance. Ask Google.