The County of Los Angeles Animal Care and Control has curtailed certain non-main mission services, including the routine response to calls involving “nuisance” wildlife. As such, the Department will no longer respond to calls regarding trapping or attempting to capture wildlife within Lomita including skunks, opossums, raccoons, and squirrels. The Department will continue to respond to such calls if it involves a public safety issue (such as rattlesnakes) or a sick or injured animal that requires humane removal. The standard turnaround time for these requests is within 24 hours, but the target time is within 4 hours.
The California Department of Fish and Game prohibits the Los Angeles County Department of Animal Care and Control from relocating any wild animal. If a resident traps an animal, they must contact a private trapping service to remove and relocate the animal. Some trapping services may also be licensed to euthanize the wild animal in a humane manner. The following tips may be useful in preventing wild animals from foraging for food in your yard or surrounding area:
- Skunks, raccoons and opossums are nocturnal or nighttime active animals and are often attracted to residential areas by the availability of food, water and shelter.
- Removing or eliminating the availability of these elements will often encourage these wild animals to leave.
- Remove unused pet food and water bowls at night.
- Keep tight fitting lids on garbage cans or store garbage inside a secure area. Do not store trash in trash bags.
- Gardens should be harvested frequently and windfall fruit picked up.
- Keep pet access doors locked.
- Seal up entry holes in and under buildings, eaves, air ducts and decks. Slotted metal vent covers are preferable to screen wire in keeping wild animals from entering houses through foundation vents. Backyard decks have proven to be extremely attractive shelters for wild animals. They may be excluded by using ¼” grid screening or solid metal flashing. Trench around the perimeter of the deck a minimum of 12 inches deep, insert screening in trench and backfill. Attach top of screening to facade of deck with nails or fence post staples. This technique may also be used along fence lines to prevent wild animals from entering yards or gardens. Before completing final seal on the last entry point on a building or deck, it is wise to make sure no animals are trapped inside. Sprinkle flour around the entrance holes and check for tracks the following morning. If no tracks are evident for 3 consecutive nights, no animals are likely present.
- Wild animals causing lawn and turf damage may be encouraged to leave by controlling grub worms and other subsoil insects. Chemicals to control these insects may be obtained at hardware or garden supply stores. Remember the safety of your pets when dealing with chemicals.
- Wild animals may be kept away from roof areas by trimming tree branches 10 feet from roof and by keeping climbing plants trimmed away from roof area and eaves.
- Food and water should never be intentionally left out for wild animals.