Do mothballs help repel wild animals?

Basic answer is most of them a simple no, they will not repel them in any way shape or form, in fact there is some evidence to suggest that with certain animals mothballs can actually be used to bait the trap and other animals will seem to use your mothballs as a marker place to dig a hole, usually under a fence. You must also realize that the ingredients used in mothballs, naphthalene, is highly toxic, so anything else that comes in contact with the mothballs, like little children picking them up or your cat playing with them because they roll nicely can result in them being poisoned.

I cannot find a single professional who says mothballs or ammonia will repel the most common pests, squirrels, raccoons, opossums, skunks and rats and mice will ignore both of these things. The problem with most pest animals is that unless you remove the reason they came to your house in the first place then unless you use specifically species targeted repelling methods which do not include mothballs or ammonia in most cases you will not discourage the animal, especially if what they came after is free and easy food.

If raccoons getting into your rubbish and making a hell of a mess in the process is a big problem for you there are a couple of solutions, the first one is you can buy raccoon repellent trash bags, get some and try them on your raccoons because my information suggests some raccoons will ignore them others will leave rather than go through them. The other solution is of course to fence your garbage bins in, and I can hear you ask, what good will that do, a raccoon can climb any fence, and they sure can, if it is an ordinary fence, try electrifying it, that will keep any scrounging critter away from your garbages.

Most animals are looking for food and a warm, dry place to live, the most effective deterrence you can have is to not give them any of these three things at your house, but removing two of the three will also have the same effect. If the animals you want gone cannot get anything they want from you they will leave you alone and go elsewhere for whatever it is they are lacking. Finally the only animals that you can deter with mothballs or ammonia are animals that rely on their sense of smell for finding their food like groundhogs.

Go back to the Denver Wildlife Control Home Page.