Marten in the attic. How to deal with an intruder?

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The house marten is an animal that can win sympathy just by its appearance. In reality, it can be very useful, but unfortunately it can also cause a lot of problems. However, this is no reason to harm this small mammal. What are humane ways to deal with the marten?

House marten: friend or pest?

What kind of animal is the house marten? This mammal grows up to 50 cm, where more than 20 cm is a magnificent tail. Its weight is a maximum of 1.5 kg. It can live up to 10 years, giving birth to 2 to 8 young at a time

What does the marten eat?

The house marten has a very wide range of foods that it feeds on. It does not disdain fruits. Among the prey of this mammal are birds, but also their eggs, frogs, insects, bats. If it lives close to human houses it mercilessly exterminates rats and mice. Unfortunately it can also kill pigeons or hens. The problem is that it can destroy cabling and leaves behind a bad smell. What other damage can a marten do around the house? Thermal insulation can be damaged. Our car may also be in danger. Additionally, you need to be prepared for constant noise at night.

The balance of profits and losses that occur due to the company of martens is not clear. As long as the animal does not cause harm, it can be our ally. When losses occur – at some stage it may become necessary to stop it. How to do it? Remember that marten is a protected animal. Here are some humane ways.

Prevention first: create physical barriers for martens

A good idea, which will only allow the marten to play a useful role in the area, is to secure those areas where the animal can do damage. Sometimes this will be a relatively easy task, other times it will present some difficulties.


The basic element in the fight against marten infestation is to prevent the marten from finding a convenient place, especially for nesting. Nets to protect the attic and gutter outlets are a must. You also need to make sure that the thermal insulation does not have weak spots where the animal will easily bite into

Garage and car

Similarly, we should make sure that the entrances to the garage are sealed. In a situation where we have a concrete screed underneath it, this shouldn’t be difficult. It is worse when our car is “garaged” under a cloud. Then we can find not only food remains under the hood, but also have e.g. chewed wires, which creates a serious danger. Here, a good solution may be to purchase a liquid marten repellent and spray what we have under the hood. Spraying is usually repeated every 4-8 weeks

Dovecote and poultry house

Breeders of fowl and rabbits should protect their poultry houses, dovecotes and aviaries where birds live very well. It is absolutely necessary to make sure that not only the doors but also the windows are tight. Such rooms should of course be closed at night

Deterrence: Ways to discourage martens from entering damage

Scented repellents

On the market we have quite a large selection of substances that are responsible for repelling martens, rats and other rodents. These are usually substances of natural origin, which are indifferent for humans and pets. They should be sprayed around the house, which will create a barrier to discourage these mammals from entering our roof. Repeat the spraying according to the manufacturer’s instructions.

>> See also: The easiest way to mole. Anti-mole net

Electronic repellents

Moles, like rats for example, are also sensitive to low-frequency sounds or those imitating the sounds of moles’ enemies (badgers). These sounds are not a nuisance to humans but they should discourage martens – it is necessary to change the sequence of sounds from time to time so that the martens do not get used to them

Plectranthus (mosquito bite)

Martens also hate the smell of certain plants. One example is the plectranthus, or mosquito plant. Humans find their scent rather pleasant. Other strong scents are sometimes used, such as toilet cube

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