People often confuse squirrels for their very near cousins chipmunks. Both animals are furry, bushy-tailed, nut-eating foragers that belong to the same animal class. But if they could talk they’d yell ‘Hey we’re no chipmunks!” In fact, the behaviour of squirrels is very different than that of chipmunks. Let’s take a closer look at some exciting and helpful facts about squirrels.
Variety- The Spice of a Squirrel’s Life
There are more than 200 species of squirrels in the world. These species are divided into three broad categories, the flying squirrel (which doesn’t really fly but rather glides over short distances from tree to tree using wing like extra skin spread from its sides), the ground squirrels and the tree squirrels.
They’re Everywhere in Canada!
Varying species of squirrels can be found all over the world. In North American countries such as Canada (which is home to 22 species of squirrels falling each of the three broad categories mentioned above), the popular ones are the Sciurus Carolinensis or grey squirrel and the red squirrel.
A Squirrel’s 9-5
Squirrels are foragers, which means by nature, they spend most of their waking hours gathering food and taking it to their nest for storage. They target foods that have high fat, protein and carbohydrate content. Depending on the type of the food you have stored in your garbage, you may be inviting squirrels to a feast or foraging party.
Learning as much as you can about squirrels is key to figuring out the best squirrel deterrents. These furry little creatures hate the smell of peppermint and spicy peppers, so planting these around the space it may keep them away. They are also repelled by skunk-like odours. If you can find a safe substance that carries the smell, sprinkling it on the property may keep squirrels at bay, but it comes with a downside… that awful skunk stink!
Another squirrel deterrent is vegetable grease coated on poles and other smooth surfaces that the rodents love to climb. After slipping off several times, they will soon give up especially since each encounter with the grease means also cleaning off the paws.
The Threat of Extinction
Conservationists will be quick to tell you that many squirrel species fall on the IUCN’s (International Union for the Conservation of Nature) list of threatened or vulnerable animals. It is for this reason that extra caution must be taken when attempting to remove squirrels from human environments.
Enlist the help of expert and humane animal control services such as Skedaddle if your squirrel deterrent methods are not working. In fact, it is a good idea to contact them at the first sign of a squirrel infestation. Squirrels play a vital role to the ecosystem and their declining number could pose some severe consequences. You don’t want to run the risk of using squirrel deterrents that push more of the world’s squirrel species into extinction.