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Found a Baby Squirrel?
PLEASE CALL THE DALLAS FORT WORTH WILDLIFE COALITION AT (972) 234-9453 IF YOU HAVE A SQUIRREL EMERGENCY.
The Squirrel Rescue site a sister site of the Rainbow Wildlife Rescue with a collection of squirrel facts, photos and movies of baby squirrels as well as other important information about baby squirrel care. The information was acquired from many sources and personal experience.
Its purpose is NOT to serve as a reference, but rather to address some of the most commonly asked questions about this widely known, yet rarely understood little animal.
Keeping squirrels and small animal pets happy is easy with Pets at Home with the support and experience that they offer.
A typical call at the Rainbow Wildlife Rescue:
Locate a Wildlife Rehabilitator:
Wildlife Rehabilitators by US State
Some States do not have an official list or directory of licensed wildlife rehabilitators or wildlife centers and organizations, therefore these links will point to one of the larger online directories.
Baby squirrels sometimes fall out of a nest that has been damaged in a storm or by an aggressive male squirrel. The squirrel may not be an orphan at all, but may have just fallen from its nest. If one squirrel has fallen from a damaged nest, others may have fallen out as well.
Make your landscape more eco-friendly and squirrel-friendly by installing LeafFilter.
Search the immediate area.
Look under bushes and fallen leaves where other babies may have taken cover.
Lock up any lose dogs and cats and keep watch, from a distance, for one to two hours.
It is recommended that you warm the baby squirrel in your hands or by holding it close to your body and then place it at the base of the tree. Given time, the mother will return and retrieve her baby.
The scent of humans will not stop the mother from taking back her baby. If the weather is cold, line a box with some towels and a hot water bottle wrapped in a towel. Place the baby in the box and the box at the base of the tree.
If the mother squirrel has not returned for her young within two hours, you probably have an orphan on your hands. Find out what to do by choosing from the following links:
Squirrel's belong to the order "Rodentia", with 1650 species, it is the largest group of living mammals. It also comprises forty percent of all present day mammal species.
There are over 365 species of squirrels in seven families. They include the tree squirrel, ground squirrel, and flying squirrel. Plus many squirrel-like mammals such as the gopher, ground hog and prairie dog.
Squirrels are the most active in late winter, when the mating season begins. The males will chase a females, as well as, chase off other suitors. This ritual of chasing, occurs through the trees at top speed. While they perform some of the most breathtaking acrobatics imaginable.
The period of gestation varies from 33 days in the smaller species of pine squirrels, up to 60 days for the larger species such as the common gray and fox squirrels.
Squirrels are usually born in the early spring. The average litter consists of four. This varies with climate and location. A second litter can occur in mid summer, if there is an adequate food supply.
A female squirrel will choose the strongest male during mating season, but is unlikely to breed with that male again. This is natures way of reducing inbreeding, and to preserve the species.
A baby squirrel weighs approximately one ounce at birth, and is about one inch long. They do not have hair or teeth, and are virtually blind for the first six to eight weeks.
Gray squirrels come in many colors. Shades of gray are the most common followed by shades of brown. There are also pure white and pure black squirrels, but both are variations of the gray squirrel.
In the summer squirrels are most active two to three hours after sunrise, then they'll rest in the afternoon. Resuming activity again two hours before sunset. The squirrel will retire to its nest well before dark, and will rarely leave the nest in the dark. In the winter, the squirrel will complete its activities between dawn and mid- day, and will remain in or around the nest until the next day.
During winter storms, or severe cold, the squirrel may not leave the nest for days. But, the tree squirrel does not hibernate!
An adult squirrel normally lives alone. But will, in severe cold, share its nest with other squirrels to conserve body heat. Once the temperature rises, the guests will be on their way.
Squirrels eyes are located high, and on each side of their head. This allows them a wide field of vision, without turning their head.
The gray squirrels diet consists of nuts, seeds and fruit. It will eat bird eggs, bugs, and even an animal carcass if there is no other food source available.
The gray squirrel requires some salt in its diet, and may find this salt in the soil along roads where snow and ice may have been.
Squirrels chew on tree branches to sharpen and clean their teeth. That's why you may see many small branches on the ground around large trees. They will also chew on power lines for the same reason, this has caused many major power outages throughout the country.
The average adult squirrel needs to eat about a pound of food a week to maintain an active life.