How to Trap a Chipmunk in a Mouse Trap

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Chipmunks, while cute, can be extremely destructive to gardens and homes.
Chipmunks, while cute, can be extremely destructive to gardens and homes. (Image: Chipmunk image by Bill from Fotolia.com)

Chipmunks may conjure images of adorable critters; Alvin, Simon and Theodore harmonizing to Christmas tunes or Chip and Dale tormenting other Disney characters with their antics. But unlike their animated counterparts, in the real world these cute creatures can wreak havoc in your lawn and garden; even undermine the foundation of your home. While it may be distasteful to think of terminating these furry guys, if your environment has become overpopulated with chipmunks, it may be necessary. A mousetrap may be the solution if other more humane methods of elimination have failed.

Things You'll Need

  • Mousetraps
  • Bait
  • Gloves
  • Boxes
  • Boards

Bait mousetraps with chipmunk-attracting lure. Chipmunk-friendly bait includes peanut butter, nuts, oatmeal, pumpkin or sunflower seeds, raisins, prune slices and common breakfast cereals.

Place traps along pathways where chipmunks frequently travel. Set out baited, unset traps for two to three days to condition the rodents to the traps. Place small amounts of bait around the traps to further entice the chipmunks. If one bait doesn't appear to be attractive to chipmunks, try another.

Set traps perpendicular to chipmunk’s usual travel path. Traps can also be set in pairs with triggers facing in different directions. Trigger arms should be set to be sensitive so they are easily sprung.

Cover traps with small boxes accessible only to chipmunks to avoid inadvertently trapping songbirds. Allow enough clearance for trap to operate properly. Lean boards over traps set next to structures to cover them. Set small amounts of bait at openings to boxes as an enticement.

Use gloves to remove and dispose of dead rodents.

Tips & Warnings

  • Before resorting to mousetraps, try more humane methods of removal, such as live-catch traps and relocation.
  • Chipmunks may carry diseases. Use gloves when disposing of dead animals.
  • Keep traps out of reach of children and family pets.
  • Consult your local conservation agency for status of chipmunks in your area. Chipmunks are not federally protected, but state and local regulations may apply.

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