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Homeowner Finds 700 Pounds of Woodpecker Acorns: What We Can Learn

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A California homeowner had quite the surprise when a pest control expert discovered 700 pounds of acorns stashed inside their walls and chimney. The bounty was laid there by woodpeckers over a 2-5 year period and had to be carried out in 8 large garbage bags. 

While this event was certainly extreme and unique, it speaks to the importance of pest control experts when dealing with any type of pest problem. Let’s review the lessons we can learn from this episode and how you can prevent a similar (but hopefully smaller) occurrence in your home or business. 

Why Do Woodpeckers Hoard Acorns?Holes in a tree stuffed with acorns by a woodpecker.

Acorn woodpeckers are a unique species of woodpecker that hoard acorns for food. In the wild, these birds tuck acorns into nooks and holes they make in trees. They can leave 100s of holes while creating a winter food cache and can be a nuisance to ranchers by perforating fence posts and barn walls. 

Acorn woodpeckers live in The Western and Southwestern United States as well as Central America. While they don’t live in New York where we operate, plenty of other pests like rats and mice will build storage caches inside of your walls. 

4 Lessons from The Acorn Woodpecker Call

It’s unlikely that you will have a pest situation like the homeowners in California but you can learn from their misfortune. Here are four takeaways:

1. Pest Problems Can Multiply

Nick Castro of Nick’s extreme pest control was originally called to the home for mealworms. The homeowner reported seeing the worms coming out of their walls. What the pest control team discovered was that the mealworms were feasting on the giant cache of acorns created by the woodpeckers.

Furthermore, the team discovered that the woodpeckers had bore 100s of holes in the home’s interior walls along the chimney. Not only did the homeowner have two different pests to remove, they unknowingly accumulated some hefty home repair expenses.

The lesson learned here is that letting one pest in can lead to more. Chances are, it was only a matter of time before other pests like rodents would eventually discover that massive food stash and take advantage of the bottomless buffet. 

2. The Importance of a Good Pest Professional

A good pest professional doesn’t just solve the surface pest problem. They look at the whole ecosystem to understand what attracts pests, where they get in and how you can prevent them. If the California homeowner hadn’t called Nick’s Extreme Pest Control, they might not have learned how deep their problem went until it became catastrophic. 

If you notice a pest problem in your home or business, there could be a lot more going on beyond the signs you’re seeing. Trust a certified professional to fully diagnose the extent of your infestation. 

3. Pest Proofing for One Pest Can Stop Other Pests

It turns out the homeowner in California didn’t have their chimney properly covered to keep pests out. Upon further examination, the pest control team also found that woodpeckers were getting in through the attic ventilation ducts. 

Fortifying your home against any one pest can significantly reduce the likelihood of other pests. If the homeowner had mesh covering over their vulnerable entry points, the woodpeckers never would have gotten in and there never would have been acorns to attract the mealworms.

Make sure that you follow pest control best practices. Seal cracks and openings in your home. Repair leaks and torn screens. Landscape around your home to ensure pests don’t create nests nearby. 

4. Bird Control is Pest ControlPigeons sit on top of a dirty roof.

We don’t often think of birds as pests but they can definitely be more than a casual nuisance. 700 pounds of acorns is an extreme example but problem birds can be noisy, dirty and a health hazard. Bird control experts can address issues like large groups of birds around your property, nests clogging your drain pipes or gutter and unhealthy amounts of bird waste damaging your home. 

Don’t hesitate to call in an expert. Experienced pros can gently and safely prevent birds from disturbing you and destroying your property.

For New York Pest Problems Big and Small

After serving as New York, New Jersey and Connecticut’s premiere pest control agency for nearly a century, we like to think we’ve seen it all. Every now and then, something like the acorn house comes along to remind you how unpredictable

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