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Do Squirrels Eat Meat? | Which Kind of Meat Would They Prefer

do squirrels eat meat

Squirrels are bushy rodents that are found all over the world except Australia and Antarctica. Moreover, there are more than 200 species of squirrels present across the world, but they are divided into three categories.

As, tree squirrels, ground squirrels, and flying squirrels. However, these names are given on the basis of their habitats. As tree squirrels live on trees, ground squirrels live inside the ground by making holes.

And flying squirrels used to live on trees, but they can jump from one place to another almost 20m long, this ability makes them fall in the list of flying squirrels.

Moreover, squirrels are naturally herbivorous, and their diet contains lots of ingredients but do squirrels eat meat? And how much part of their diet contains meat? If you are looking for all such questions, then this article is for you.

As in this article, I’m going to take a closer look at such queries. To navigate this article if you want to interesting facts about squirrel’s food.

Squirrels are those naughty rodents that can eat almost everything found in their way. For example, they love to eat nuts, plants, fruits, as well as seeds. However, most of the time, squirrels are vegetarians, but that doesn’t mean they cannot eat meat or they don’t like it.

As squirrels can eat meat when they get the opportunity to eat it. But it is rare that they hunt for meat.

In addition, eating meat also makes them in the category of predators for many small rodents like rabbits, mice, chicks, etc. But for meat, they never go for animals bigger than their size.

Do Squirrels Eat Meat?

If you are wondering about do squirrels eat meat, then the answer is, yes. Yes, squirrels can eat meat when their primary food becomes unavailable. In addition, the primary food of squirrels contains fruits of all types, plants including their leaves as well as their roots, nuts, seeds, etc.

However, that doesn’t mean that squirrels in the wild don’t eat meat at all, as in the wild, their primary food is present in an adequate amount.

Read also: Do Squirrels Eat Rats ?

But in eating meat, squirrels look for opportunity. And when they get the opportunity, they can eat small birds, mice, rabbits, and even young snakes. Not only this, but they can eat other young squirrels.

Moreover, they can eat the meat of dead squirrels also. As eating young squirrels is mainly done by male squirrels, and they do because of mainly two reasons.

Firstly, if they are desperate for food and getting a chance to hunt young squirrels, they can. Secondly, they do so that mother squirrel can find another mate partner and they will become the next.

Not only male, but there are many such incidents we can see on the internet that sometimes-depressed squirrel mother can eat their young ones.

Not only just meat, but when squirrels get the opportunity, they also eat eggs from the nests of others. Moreover, squirrels also can kill and eat young snakes.

But usually, squirrels don’t hunt for meat until it is available to them easily. However, squirrels can eat insects, bugs, and any other roadkill which present them with fresh meal.

Do Squirrels Like to Eat Chickens Meat:

If you have chickens in your farm and squirrels near the tree, it is a matter of concern. Because, squirrels not only can attack chickens but also, they can eat their eggs when they get the opportunity.

As squirrels are opportunistic rodents in the case of eating meat. And when they get the chance, they will surely eat your chickens as well as their eggs.

What Do Squirrels Like to Eat?

do squirrels eat meats
do squirrels eat meats

Squirrels can eat a large variety of things, including fruits of all types, seeds, nuts, insects, etc. They also can eat leafy green vegetables, with tomatoes, corn, radish, carrots, broccoli, cabbage, celery, etc.

When it comes to cereals, squirrels can eat wheat, corn flakes, nuts, etc. However, squirrels can eat human food as well, as they are living with humans for thousands of years.

So, they adapt themselves to eat human food as well. That’s why squirrels can eat any type of cheese, pizza bread, sandwiches, etc.

Not only this, but squirrels can also eat fungi, oyster mushrooms, truffles, etc.

Which Foods Are Not Healthy for Squirrels?

As squirrels can eat a variety of foods, but there are also many foods that are not healthy for squirrels. And that’s why we shouldn’t offer them these foods. Moreover, squirrels in the wild should’ve avoided it. So, let’s have a close look at such foods.

Peanuts:

However, it’s not like that, peanuts are harmful to squirrels, or squirrels don’t like it. But still, they have to avoid it. As well as if you are feeding a squirrel, then you should’ve to avoid them to offer peanuts.

The reason is that peanuts don’t offer any significant nutritional value to squirrels. And they just act as stomach filler for them. That’s why avoid offering peanuts to squirrels, but sometimes a mild treat of peanuts wouldn’t be bad.

Junk Foods:

However, too much use of junk foods is not good for humans same goes for squirrels. But for squirrels, a small amount of junk food is also bad. However, the reason behind this is that junk foods contain an excessive amount of salt and sugar.

And salt causes dehydration in squirrels, and sugar in junk foods causes excitement and hyperactivity in squirrels. It can also increase their heartbeat etc. So, we also avoid offering them junk foods.

Breakfast Cereals:

Cereals in the breakfast of squirrels are also not good for them. As they don’t offer any nutritional value in the breakfast to squirrels. So, we also avoid them to feed only cereals in the breakfast.

Rather than that, we can mix a small amount of cereals into some fruits, etc. So that they can get a healthy breakfast for their remaining day time activities.

Chocolates:

Processed chocolate is toxic for squirrels, as it contains theobromine, a substance that will be deadly for squirrels. Not only for squirrels, but chocolates can be deadly to your other pets like cats and dogs. And same goes for birds, as chocolate is also dangerous for them.

As, theobromine in chocolates causes an increment in heartbeat, diarrhea, seizures, and ultimately causes their death.

Do Squirrels Eat Other Squirrels:

Yes, it’s strange, but squirrels can eat other squirrels as well as they can eat baby squirrels. Eating squirrels to other squirrels let them fall into the category of cannibalistic. However, squirrels can eat other squirrels in the following circumstance:

Firstly, they can eat other squirrels if they found them dead already may be due to their natural death or in an accident.

Secondly, there are some cases available on the internet in which male squirrels eat baby squirrels to be the next mate partner for mother squirrel.

Thirdly, it has also happened that sometime stressed mother squirrel eats their own baby squirrels. However, it is a rare situation, in which if mother squirrel not getting enough food, etc.

What Kind of Meat Do Squirrels Eat?

Squirrels are scavengers and can eat a variety of foods. And when they are desperate for food or get a chance, then they also can scavenge through the trash. That’s why similarly squirrels don’t have any preference when it comes to meat.

Read also: How do Squirrels Drink Water in the Wild ?

Therefore, they can eat small birds, eggs, rabbits, mice, as well as they can eat dead meat. Moreover, they can eat other dead squirrels, as discussed above.

But usually, they do not hunt for meat rather than that they only eat when easily available. And hunt only when they have a chance or when their primary food is unavailable.

Because of these reasons, experts tend to classify them as herbivorous than omnivorous despite the fact that they can eat meat.

Wrap Up:

Do squirrels eat meat? Then the answer is that yes. Squirrels don’t eat or need meat on a daily basis. It just depends upon the fact that if they get a chance to hunt it easily or if they found it freely.

And also, they don’t care to eat other dead squirrels. However, sometimes the squirrels can eat baby squirrels of others. Not only this, but they can eat small birds, eggs, insects, road kills, rabbits, mice, etc.

However, if you want to feed them, then their main diet consists of nuts, seeds, vegetables, fruits, etc. Moreover, you can add a small amount of meat in their diet so that they can get the necessary amount of proteins and fats.