Gnawing noises are heard in one general area of our house. It is most obvious coming from forced air vents located in the shared void between a lower level ceiling and the floor of the living areas above. Two professionals have not been able to ID the animal (not mouse, not squirrel, not rat, or raccoon) and there appear to be no visible entry points from outside to this area. Baits and snap traps (peanut butter, bacon) for mice, live traps or baits(untouched) for chipmunks haven't eliminated the cause of the sound. I have opened the ceiling in numerous area and inspected the floor joists without seeing the animal, droppings, or actual damage.
Members of my family often wake with the loudness of the noise at night. However, the noise is day and night but stops after any sharp noise occurs in that area, as if an animal is startled. Soon after the noise resumes. Our home is built into the side of a hill so the affected areas are 4-6 feet above outside ground level and have been consistent for about ten weeks. I wonder if it could be a chipmunk or vole in an adjacent wall with the sound traveling to multiple areas close by.
There has been heavy construction (i.e. pile driver) two blocks away that began at the beginning of last fall. We do have bird feeders, squirrels, chipmunks and maybe meadow voles(?) in our yard all year. This is a new situation in the 19 years we have lived here. Any observations/suggestions you have would be appreciated greatly. Lee Johnson