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When wildlife invades your space, avoid potential conflict situations

The Georgia DNR's Wildlife Resources Division says that in most cases, wildlife invades our space because of access to a food source. Learn how to prevent unwanted visitors with these tips.

While most Georgians treasure seeing backyard wildlife like songbirds and squirrels, the sentiment might fade if you find wildlife digging through your trash can or tearing open bags of pet food on your carport. Let’s look for ways to avoid the conflict. In most cases, wildlife invades our space because of access to a food source and that is something we can easily prevent, according to the Georgia Department of Natural Resources’ Wildlife Resources Division.

“Most wildlife species will take advantage of easy-to-get food source opportunities, but that is not what is best for wildlife,” says Kaitlin Goode, Urban Wildlife Program Manager for the Wildlife Resources Division. “When we make efforts around our home to ensure that we are keeping unnatural foods inaccessible, we are protecting our safety, our homes and our pets, and also protecting wildlife.”

Coyote. . GADNR WRD Steve Kyles

Following are some basic tips:

  • Keep items such as grills and pet food off-limits. Clean and store grills when not in use, keep pet food indoors and feed pets indoors.
  • Refill bird feeders less frequently and in small amounts.
  • Make trash cans inaccessible. Keep lids securely fastened or store trash cans in a secured location until the morning of trash pick-up.

Resources for resolving human-wildlife conflicts, including fact sheets, tips on managing land for wildlife, a list of professional nuisance trappers, wildlife rehabilitator information, and much more can be found at