Squirrels can become a nuisance when they invade your home and destroy your property, but they are incredibly entertaining when you observe them going about their daily routines. The talented rodents can run across power lines, leap to nearby trees, hide food in your potted plants and outwit your top-of-the-line birdfeeder. When squirrels find a way inside your home to construct a den, you should contact a professional crew trained to implement squirrel removal services and avoid direct contact with the animals. After learning about the squirrel’s intelligence, you’ll understand why removal is a job reserved for experienced technicians.
How Is a Squirrel’s Intelligence Unique?
Rodents are clever animals, but the squirrel tops the list for intelligence. Although a mouse or rat can outmaneuver and sometimes outsmart a pursuing human, squirrel’s agility and intelligence give them an advantage over other predators and larger creatures.
Food Collection and Storage
Like other rodents, squirrels can wreak havoc on your home when they’re building shelters and foraging for food. However, squirrels are unique in their ability to hide food in multiple locations and remember which type of food is in each spot. There are several different species of squirrels, but the eastern grey squirrel has a spatial memory more developed than its relatives. Although researchers previously believed that squirrels relied on their enhanced sense of smell to find buried food, recent studies show that smell only plays a minor role. The animal’s impressive memory allows you to recover food from several locations.
Squirrels race frantically to find enough food to get them through the winter, but they’re not satisfied with any food. They visit healthy trees with the best nuts and seeds, and sometimes they shake the nuts to determine if they’re rotten or edible. When they bury the food, they find an area of soil that isn’t too moist or dry. Moisture can cause their cache to spoil, and a hole that’s too dry is easier for other animals to smell and dig up.
Re-burying Food Caches
Although burying several thousand nuts every year can be complicated enough, squirrels go even farther by digging up their caches and re-burying them in safer areas. They notice when their cache has been disturbed by another squirrel or other animal. They understand that food theft is expected in the rodent world, and they often re-bury their food several times a year.
Squirrels have a keen sense of knowing when another squirrel is watching them, and they often put on a show to trick their competitors. They dig a hole and pretend to bury a nut while hiding it in their armpit, and then they run off and bury the nut in a more secluded spot. Sometimes, their performance includes covering the empty hole with grass and twigs to make it appear like an actual food cache.
After observing a family member perform an acrobatic feat or food recovery strategy, a squirrel learns the new trick and continues to use it throughout its life. Researchers conducted learned behaviour studies on squirrels and determined that squirrels are more capable of learning than other rodents. For instance, a squirrel who figures out how to access a hanging bird feeder can persuade others to try the same technique.
How To Remove Squirrels From Your Home
Removing squirrels or other pests from your home is a hazardous activity that you should not attempt. Squirrels can become aggressive when they’re protecting their den, and they’re capable of biting and scratching you. Since they spread rabies and other harmful diseases, you should contact a professional immediately when you have a squirrel problem. At Skedaddle Humane Wildlife Control, we practice humane wildlife removal and protect your home against future rodent invasions.