how to keep porcupines from eating wood
Kristina Davis

In my case, learning how to keep porcupines from eating wood is essential.

Together with my family, we settled in a region far from the city, and therefore, both our indoor and outdoor furniture are primarily wooden furniture.

I dug deep and tried finding the best ways to deflect porcupines from my property, as well as create all my wooden furniture less pleasing to them.

You can keep porcupines from chewing on your wood by covering your wooden furniture with over-the-counter and natural porcupine repellents.

Why Do Porcupines Eat Wood?

porcupines eat wood

The idea of porcupines munching on wood always baffled me. I mean, what is there to love about wood?

Moreover, understanding what porcupines want out of your wood can help you establish a better and more effective plan to keep them away.

Porcupines are heavily drawn and attracted to the naturally occurring contents of wood, such as sweat, paint, or glue.

These materials attract rodents like rats, skunks, and even squirrels.

They also look at wood as the answer to the nutrition and diet they need. Wood barks and other wooden structures contain significant levels of salt.

For them to satisfy this need – you got it – they chew on wood.

How to Keep Porcupines Away?

Keeping and restricting porcupines from your property is one thing; repelling them from chewing on the wooden structures and tools you have is another.

As a homeowner, I wanted my space to be secure – I’ll never know when porcupines might hit and enter my house.

So, I usually go with the comprehensive method of keeping them away. Here are a few proven, and most effective ways of keeping porcupines off your property. 

Install a Fence (Standard or Electric Fence)

install fence

Probably the easiest and simplest way to deter porcupines from visiting your estate is to establish a fence around it.

Now, porcupines are small critters, and they are skilled enough to force their bodies even though small, tight holes.

So, in setting up a fence, make sure that the clearance is no more than 50 cm per wire from the ground.

Note: Do not use wood in preparing your fence; they’ll be able to chew on it, and eventually, they’ll break it.

Set Up Traps

Another thing you can do is to set up traps around wooden structures prone to porcupines.

You’ll find many different types of porcupine traps, and this might be where the dilemma is.

So, I did my best and chose 2 of the best ones, according to homeowners and experts! 

Live Animal Trap

This is the typical trap used for different animals. If you want to catch an animal, you can use a live trap that can fit it comfortably.

set up live animal trap

For this, you simply need to place bait inside the trap, and then ensure that the trap’s enclosure will be kept closed even if the porcupine moves and tries to escape.

Deep Hole Trap

I found a couple of live animal traps online, but if you’re not the type who will buy them, you can use a traditional catching technique called the “deep hole trap.”

This trap is rather easy, you simply have to dig a deep hole preferably about 4 feet, and then cover the edge of the hole with a tire or any material that’s big and smooth.

Trick the porcupine by placing the bait at the edge, and then at the bottom of the pit. From there, it’ll be almost impossible for them to climb back up.

Use Porcupine Repellents

Last, but most definitely not least is to use pest and porcupine repellents. 

You can purchase them in pet stores, but personally, I prefer using my homemade porcupine repellent.

porcupine repellants


Simply because it’s natural, cheap, and I don’t need to go outside my home to prepare it.

What Baits Can You Use For Porcupines?

Experts in Wildlife Help suggest using fruits soaked in saltwater. Other than this, you can also use vegetable scraps like turnips, carrots, pumpkins, and tomatoes.

Soak them in saltwater to smell and look tastier to porcupines. In addition to that, you can also use raw, untreated wood.

However, it’s imperative that you soak it in salt water, too, so that porcupines will be able to track and trace them faster.

How to Keep Porcupines From Eating Wood?

If your plan of keeping them off your lawn isn’t successful, what do you do?

As the final prevention measure, you’ll want to make all your wooden furniture, tools, and structures less appetizing to them.

keep porcupines eating wood

How do you do this?

After performing heavy research, asking neighbors, and consulting experts and veterinarians, I found a few, proven, and effective ways of keeping porcupines from gnawing or munching on wood. 

Method #1: Apply Porcupine Repellent Sprays on Your Wooden Structures

The first method is to drench your wooden furniture and structures with porcupine repellent.

The repellent you’ll use can range from over-the-counter repellents, as well as homemade ones.

Spray it on the area that is the most prone to chewing and gnawing.

Note: If you have a lot of it, spray a decent amount on the entire structure. Just make sure that the smell wouldn’t be troublesome for the people living in the area, too.

Method #2: Use Ultrasonic Repellents on the Area

Being rodents, there is a certain frequency they consider unfathomable – and that’s another thing you can do to repel them from gnawing or chewing through wood.

ultrasonic repellant

Ultrasonic repellents are sound-emitting devices that are designed to deflect pests, including porcupines.

Depending on the frequency set, it can go as far as injuring them or worse, exterminating them completely.

Place a bait near the repellent and turn it on. Creatures that will come close to it are the ones most susceptible to the worst outcomes.

Method #3: Apply Cayenne Pepper on Wooden Furniture

And for the last method, cayenne pepper.

Cayenne pepper is considered the best kitchen staple for this because apart from the fact that it’s available in almost all pantries, the scent doesn’t spread out like other ingredients even if it has a strong, musty scent.

Instead, it’ll be concentrated on the part or area where you’ll place it, and when porcupines come near it, they’ll instantaneously be disgusted by the scent emitted.

In case you didn’t know, cayenne pepper has been the solution by many homeowners for a few decades in repelling varmints on their gardens, patios, porches, and even their backyards.

Spray a generous amount of cayenne pepper until these critters forget about them in the first place.

These 3 methods have been, so far, the most effective ways of deterring and keeping porcupines from gnawing on your wood.

Since I learned these, I never had problems with porcupines again. Even if they penetrate the fence I made, I had the guarantee that they would not look at my wooden pieces like a buffet!

How to Make Homemade Porcupine Repellent?

homemade porcupine repellant

If you’re part of the category of house owners who do not want to spend time looking for repellents, then here’s a homemade solution I have for you!

This solution has been the product of deep research and experiments done by various homeowners from all over the country.

  1. Boil 3 to 4 quarts of water.
  2. Mince up a yellow onion purely, then add it to the water.
  3. Then, slice up at least 2 jalapeno peppers, and add them to the boil as well.
  4. Lastly, add at least 2 cups of cayenne pepper.

Transfer it into a spray bottle and spray it on your wooden furniture and structures at least once per day.

Note: You can add exterminating chemicals like warfarin and fumarin to the boil. 

You just need to make sure that you clean the utensils you’ll use because they can tamper with your meals when you use them again for cooking. 

Final Thoughts

Do you want to know how to keep porcupines from eating wood? Are you interested to learn the concoction that’s been used by homeowners for generations now?

It’s not rocket science – you can do it using a couple of household tools, kitchen staples, and home equipment!

Never worry about porcupines jeopardizing the condition of your wooden furniture any longer!

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