J.B. Pritzker, Governor |

Solve a Wildlife Problem

Scratching Noises

Scratching coming from your attic, walls, or chimney is most likely caused by mice, rats, bats, squirrels, opossums, or raccoons.

If you hear:

  • loud vocalizations, thumping, or scratching noises in the attic or walls, mainly during the day, you may have a raccoon.
  • small scratching sounds, or the sound of a small animal running (especially at night), you may have mice or rats.
  • high-pitched “chirps” or small rustling movements in the attic or walls, you may have bats. The insulation in buildings typically muffles the sounds of bats, so often you won’t know you have bats unless you see them.
  • scurrying, bumps, or muffled movement in the attic or walls, mainly at night, you may have a tree squirrel.
  • scratching or chewing noises coming from the base of walls, you may have mice or rats, chipmunks, or ground squirrels. Small scratching or chewing noises along walls or ceiling tend to be mice or rats. Small holes outside the home near foundations or under sidewalks are often used by chipmunks and ground squirrels.

The species pages linked in the text above have information about Damage Prevention and Control measures specific to each species.