Getting rid of muskrats in ponds and lakes is not an easy task, but there are some ways you can do it. The best way is to remove the food sources that attract muskrats and make it more difficult for them to find and eat. Muskrats are also a source of disease, and they can carry parasites and bacteria that can be transferred to other animals.
One way to get rid of muskrats is to cover all the burrows in your pond with a 1-inch hardware mesh. Make sure the mesh is placed at least 3 feet below the water level. Then, secure the mesh with branches, sticks, or heavier ornaments. Then, check the perimeter of the pond to see where the muskrats are able to get into.
If you have a large pond or lake, you may need to call a professional to help you with the job. The problem is that these creatures are resilient and will attack if you corner them. They can even burrow into your dam or bank, causing damage. They can also be attracted to the food that is provided by your fish. This is why you should be careful in removing all the aquatic vegetation in your pond. You can also use a riprap stone to strengthen the embankments and pond walls.
Another solution is to install an artificial feeding station. These stations can be anchored at the bottom of the pond and will capture up to three muskrats a night. The stations are made of five pieces of thick styrofoam. The muskrats are trapped by a leg-hold trap that is nailed to the underside of the platform.
If you are unable to do the above steps, it is a good idea to contact the Department of Natural Resources. They can provide you with instructions on how to properly trap and dispose of muskrats. If you do not want to use live traps, you can use motion-activated sprinklers to scare them off.
You can also make a homemade repellent by mixing garlic powder and cayenne pepper. These spices work well as a deterrent and can be used to spray on the area where muskrats like to live. It is important that you do not overdo it as the mixture will eventually wash away.
You can use peppermint oil as a repellent. The taste of peppermint is not pleasant to muskrats, but the pepper does work as a deterrent. This method is effective for preventing muskrats from ingesting plants, but it is not a permanent solution.
You can also try to trap muskrats in their dens. If you are able to catch a few muskrats, it is a good idea to relocate them to a natural area. You can then fill in any old burrows that are no longer useful.
It is best to act sooner rather than later when you need to get rid of muskrats in your ponds and lakes. The best time to do this is in the fall when muskrats are no longer active. This will give you time to change the habitat and reduce the amount of muskrats that are in your pond.