small animals on roof at night

08/16/2009 - 18:03

We have recently had a couple of strange experiences, we firstly woken up in the middle of the night with quite loud and solid 'bumps' (oo-err!), going to investigate, we saw nothing.................Next morning, I noticed a couple of our roof tiles slightly out of position, so assumed it was a cat on the roof after something........Just now (22.59), sitting watching TV................we heard the same, armed with a torch, I raced outside and shone the torch on the roof..........................and......(oo-err)...........................saw two wide eyed, small animals (difficult to describe fully, possibly ferrets?), which quickly ran off..........................But the nearest likeness I can think of is a sort of 'meerkat' look about them (they were not cats as we know them)...............we live in Le Marche........................any ideas oh wise ones?


these can be a devastating menace they will remove or disjoint coppi on your roof they're generally looking for nests of small birds to eat them or eggs or both they can cause a lot of problems even worse if they actually get into your roof.unfortunately one can't buy class A poison anymore but class B is freely sold,remove some of the albumin from a normal chicken egg with a syringe and inject into the egg the poison and if you're able to get up to your roof leave a couple of these between the coppi you'll get them .i'm sure this reply will induce the ire of animalists in here but thats what i do .

Poison! Surely there must be a better way to discourage these critters. Apart from it being pretty cruel, can you imagine the sort of stench you'll get if 2 or 3 die under your roof space where you couldn't gain access. You'd end up having to remove your roof tiles to find their rotting carcasses.Alternatively, you could get a bait trap and move them somewhere very remote.What is the real difference between a weasel and a stoat? Well that's easy - 'cos a weasel is ‘weasily’ identified and a stoat is ‘stotally’ different.

Folks,Thanks for the comments, I now have found out that they are apparently 'European Pine Martens'. I probably need to persuade them to go 'somewhere else', as they are indeed dislodging the cotti tiles, only the odd two or three, but my gosh they sound VERY loud when they tweak these tiles in the middle of the night !I assume they are looking for insects?At this stage poison seems a little more than I want to do, any other ideas?Cheers,S

If they are indeed Pine Martens, you may well find they are a Protected Species (I know they are in th UK) and harming them in any way or destroying their habitat may well result in a hefty fine, or even Imprisonment (worst case scenario).

Thanks Gromit................I'm actually not interested in poison or anything like this, I am not sure which organisation I speak to about them(if any!)Thanks again,S

What sort of idiot would try to poison an already threatened animal- would you suggest that in the UK ? Sometimes I despair of some people here!! If you want to live apart from nature and wildlife please don't move to an old rural house in Italy!OTOH there will be other ways to deter the pine martens and I suspect that it will happen only at certain times of the year - we've had one or two on our roof but in 5 years its not been much of a problem.    

Whilst I agree with your sentiments I find them (slightly!) harsh............we are all trying to enjoy our lives here and I for one will try to administer a more acceptable deterrent, Gromit has had some very good ideas!I dearly want to embrace the habitat here, I love to see the deer, cinghiale, golden orioles, redstarts, buzzards, swallows dipping in the poll etc etc..................but I have to sleep to help me help to them (if you know what I mean?)S

If they are looking for food, as it sounds, then Birds eggs are not available in the wild at this time of year anyway. They may be foraging for food so if you want to stop them on your roof put some Food (small Chickens Eggs or similar) in a nearby tree or somewhere away from the house. To deter most aminals I find that strips of Tin Foil tied together to blow in the wind frightens away most small mamals/birds. Hang some on a stick and stuff it in a gap in your roof tiles........!!

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

Great ideas Gromit..................seems a good line of 'defence'.................I'll let you know over the next week or so,CheersS

Ironic that I should just come on the board and read this thread!I am at my gallery in the UK and have just looked out of the window and seen damage done to my extension roof by "animals" and would gladly poison them if I get my hands on them. They have stripped wide areas of lead down to the bare wood underneath, disturbed and broken tiles and by the look of it were disturbed when trying to get another sheet of lead off as the score marks are there and it is partially cut.    I hope they broke their legs when they jumped down.  Yes, our great unwashed have been vandalising and stealing to the detriment of others!And why do I want to leave England? I can cope with pine martens (we had them in our house in Denmark, in the attic).Maralyn 

Maralyn...................Deary deary me....this type of 'animal' that you are suffering with, if they did break their legs when falling, will be well looked after through the state benefits system, (one of the many reasons why I am here !)....................I am still paying taxes to help these poor souls (HA!)..............................Like you, I would be looking for a shotgun of some sort !.Luckily for me I only have poor animali that have not used the UK education system to gain their knowledge (HA! again!!)The very best of luck with shooting the bustards!!!By the way where in the (UK?) is your attack ?S

I am just outside Durham and have to say that over many years we have not suffered from vandalism, especially compared to lots of other areas and businesses.  The value of the lead they have cut away, very badly, is about £30 I reckon. (As a stained glass artist I use lead so have an idea of value). And it will cost us hundreds of £s to repair our roof. They are not animals - just scum and b******s.  Must go, the police have just arrived as I write!!!!Maralyn

The Police have just left. We are one of three to their knowledge, in our street, that have had lead stolen off the roof either Saturday or Sunday night.  There may be more because some people may not have noticed yet.  Got a crime number but now it is the bother of getting it sorted and repaired and have been told there is little hope of ever catching the moron(s) who did this. Am going to get burglar proof paint to put on what is left of my roof!!!Maralyn

Sad sad sad................We lived in Durham for a while (Nevilles Cross?), and loved it, it makes you wonder, where did 'my' age group ((JUST!!! 60+) go wrong, how can we ever put things right again?I'm not one for the gently gently  'let's talk about things' over approach.................I'm more a 'make sure they'd NEVER want to do that again' type. Sorry if that isn't PC or whatever...............but what should the 'good upstanding, law abiding' person do !!Seriously good luck in your 'recovery',Best regards,S

I am not far behind you age wise and agree with you.  Mind you the youngish policeman said likewise and said he and his colleagues despair of the government guidelines that give these vandals so little punishment, if any, so that they just go out and do the same again. Sorry, I seem to have hijacked the pine martens thread!!!Maralyn   

Love Pinemartins, please dont harm them.(You're kidding yourselves if you think nicking lead is a recent phenomena or something peculiar to British society. Its always happened, particularly when the price of lead has been high. The enormous roof above above where i am writing was stripped of lead in the 50's and is now ashphalt.  Remember reading the copper guttering was stolen from a house in Italy from one of the posters please dont fantasise that crime like this doesnt happen in Italy as sadly it does!