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Live Animal Traps

Posted on March 31, 2021
animal live traps

We share our yards and gardens with many different critters, but they can quickly become a pest when they make a home in your yard. There are many different ways to deal with pest infestations, including humane pest control methods, organic methods, and even putting up fences to protect your garden.

One great humane pest control method is using live animal traps. You can DIY this pest control solution. Alternatively, you can purchase live animal traps from your local hardware store, rent them, or find a pest control professional to help you set up and monitor your traps.

Animal Traps For Pests In Calgary

In Calgary, you can use live animal traps for catching mice, squirrels, skunks, gophers, rabbits and birds. Depending on which type of pest you're trying to handle in your yard, you'll need different types of bait. We'll go over different bait types further in this blog.

There are certain things to keep in mind when you're using your animal traps, including the frequency of checking your traps, bait and where you're releasing these pests.

Checking Your Traps

If you use live animal traps, you must regularly check your traps. Animals caught in these traps can seriously injure themselves trying to escape. You should check them frequently and be prepared to release them far away from your yard immediately.

When the weather conditions are extreme, it's also essential to check your traps. If an animal is trapped and your location is experiencing severe weather conditions, the animal can die from exposure to the elements. Live traps are only a humane form of pest control if you stay on top of monitoring them and releasing the animal back into the wild in good health.

Traps can catch all kinds of animals, not just the pests you're trying to target. Keep an eye on your traps in case neighbourhood dogs and cats get stuck in them. You'll want to release them quickly so they can get back to their owners.

You should be checking your traps a minimum of once every couple of hours. We recommend that the maximum amount of time you go without checking the traps is four hours. If you're unable to check your traps this frequently, it might be a good idea to contact a pest control company to help you monitor them. Alternatively, you can choose not to set your traps out on days you won't be home to watch them.


Depending on what kind of pest you're dealing with in your yard, you'll want to bait your animal traps differently. There are many different options for bait for each pest type, and we encourage you to do your research and try out different kinds of bait. Here are some of our favourites for Calgary pests.

animal live traps

Pest TypeBait Type
BirdsSunflower Seeds Or Other Bird Seeds
GophersPeanut Butter & Molasses Spread On Bread
RabbitsFresh Vegetables Or Fruit
MicePeanut Butter Or Sunflower Seeds
SquirrelsNuts, Grains, Cereals Or Peanut Butter

When placing the bait in the trap, make sure to put a small amount of the bait at the mouth of the trap, but the majority inside of the trap. You want the animal actually to go into the trap and activate the spring.

Catch & Release

Once you've caught your pest, it's crucial that you have a spot to release them. You want to pick a place that is far away from your home. Otherwise, you may find that the pest makes its way back to your yard before long. Because traps provide easy access to food, if you don't release your pest far enough away from your home, they might come by your yard more frequently looking for easy food sources.

Make Sure To Clean Your Animal Traps

Are you reusing your live animal traps? Make sure that you're cleaning them properly between uses. The wild animals you're trapping may carry diseases that can be passed on to whichever animal comes through the trap next, and you want to avoid situations where they can infect each other. Wipe each trap down with disinfectant between use. This will also help you clean out old bait.

Trap Placement

The best place to put your live animal traps largely depends on where you notice the pests in your yard. It can be good to put your trap against a fence or wall fence so that when pests are running along the perimeter of your property, they'll run through the trap.

Not sure where to start with your live animal traps? Give us a call at Martin's Pest Control for professional pest control services, including advice on whether or not live animal traps are the right option for you.