Wildlife Damage Inspection Process

This decision tree will ask you various questions to help you identify the animal(s) causing damage to your property. While the creators have endeavored to be thorough, they make no claims in that regard. We request that readers see this page as ONLY a guide which contains principles and insights that may prove helpful in identifying the cause of wildlife damage to one's property. Please note that this guide doesn't take into account damage caused by machines, people, or insects. Please read the information carefully.

Where is the problem occurring?

Wildlife damage inside structures Oudoor locations for wildlife damage Wildlife damage to livestock and pets Rodent damage to vehicle. Photo by Stephen M. Vantassel
Indoors Outdoors Livestock/Animals Vehicles

What signs of wildlife are present?

Smells and odors in wildlife damage inspection Wildlife bones for identification Animal feces and wildlife scat. Photo by Richard Chapman. Wildlife tracks. Photo by Stephen Vantassel
Smells/Odors Skull/Bones Scat/Feces Tracks

Inspecting Specific Wildlife Signs

Observation Skills Calendar   Noises Odor

Inspection Techniques & Strategies

Internet Center for Wildlife Damage Management UniversityInspection Principles & Techniques--A free course that guides you through the inspection process.

Taking Good Inspection Photos

Wildlife Identification

freshwater fish identificationFreshwater Fish Guide 25mg

reptile icon Reptile Identification

Identifying reptiles can be quite difficult as coloration can vary greatly even between snakes of the same species. Here are some questions to keep in mind when you see an unfamiliar snake:

  1. Was the snake solid or plain colored?
  2. Did the snake have stripes?
  3. Did the snake have crossbands or blotched coloration?
  4. What kind of habitat or environment did you see the snake? Rocks, wetlands? Woods? Attic, Town and state?

reptile iconReptile Identification-Univ. of Nebraska-Lincoln

reptile iconSnakes of Massachusetts (A Key to Identification)

Skip Navigation LinksHome > Professional > Inspection