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Old 07-25-2010, 02:15 PM   #1
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Default Critter problem...

I'm being eaten out of house and home - literally!

Lately I've noticed tiny little bits and pieces of brick and mortar laying on the concrete porch at the front of my (brick) house. I would sweep them up and they would re-appear a short time later. A couple weeks ago I discovered that the face of one of the bricks on the house was destroyed. Looked like a tree that a beaver had been gnawing on. Clearly, the front half of the entire brick was gone!

I mixed up a batch of colored mortar (red brick house) and filled in the face of the chewed brick and it is still in tact. But while cutting the lawn the other day I noticed another brick has been eaten away off to the side of the porch, and this one is eaten completely through in one of the corners.

I have an abundance of birds, cotton tail rabbits, fox and gray squirrels all over the place. I'm betting it is one of the squirrels, but has anyone ever heard of them chewing through BRICK???? I have a game camera on order to see if I can gather evidence against this criminal, although it looks like it will be awhile before I get it. Also ordered a live trap as well - again, ASSUMING this is an unauthorized squirrel demolition crew.....

Any thoughts?



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Old 07-25-2010, 04:41 PM   #2
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Can we get some pics?



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Old 07-25-2010, 05:16 PM   #3
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Pictures of the damage or of the critters themselves would help. Might could get a clue by the gnaw marks. Where is it that you live may help also.

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Old 07-25-2010, 07:40 PM   #4
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Pictures of the critter(s) will have to wait until the game camera I ordered is delivered so I can catch them in the act.

This is the damage though:





And the one that I already repaired, but they have not revisited (yet?)

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Old 07-25-2010, 08:23 PM   #5
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From left field...
My neighbor has a chain link fence that comes to the side of her house (like your's). Lightning traveling along the fence cause the brick to "explode" and the image looked like your's. She had to put a grounding rod on her fence, and it stopped.

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Old 07-25-2010, 08:55 PM   #6
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Default Frost

If it is the same type of brick as UK London Brick Co it is prone to frost blowing the face of the bricks. Whilst the damage is done in winter it does not become apparent until summer when the bricks completely dry out. IMHO a simple coat of protective silicone may put pay to this.

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Old 07-25-2010, 09:10 PM   #7
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I am with davy on this one. It is the cold the face starts to crack and then it freezes and POP off comes the face of the brick.

there is no brick eating bug or varmint that I know of.

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Old 07-25-2010, 10:23 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Davyboy View Post
If it is the same type of brick as UK London Brick Co it is prone to frost blowing the face of the bricks. Whilst the damage is done in winter it does not become apparent until summer when the bricks completely dry out. IMHO a simple coat of protective silicone may put pay to this.
Hmmm..... now that is an interesting observation. And one I never would have thought of, seeing as I know less than nothing about home construction.

It does make sense I suppose since this brick does seem to be quite "porous". I guess I will have to patch up the other two areas and just keep a closer eye on the rest of the house to see what happens. I will make sure to pick up some type of sealer to put on the brick though for good measure.

I was thinking "squirrel" because I have caught them digging all the soil out of the wife's flower pots on the front porch though and clawing at the brick. That's when I first saw the damage to the house.

Thanks for the input gentlemen!
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Old 07-26-2010, 03:45 AM   #9
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Old 07-26-2010, 04:09 AM   #10
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White scaling in photo seems to indicate presence of moisture. How long since bricks have been pointed? Is the mortar between the bricks loose and/or crumbly? Is all damage on one side of house, i.e. side subjected to harshest weather?

Google Image Result for http://www.bostonmason.com/Info_files/brickdiagram.jpg



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