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How Do Squirrels Survive the Extreme Winter Cold?

Winter is a tough period for plant and animal life alike. The season comes with unbearably low temperatures and a scarcity of food – a deadly combination for many living things. So just how do Canada’s squirrels make it through this trying season? Let us explore some squirrel survivalist methods. At the end, we hope you’ll understand why such a special wildlife animal deserves special treatment and opt for humane squirrel removal when you have an infestation situation.

Pre-Winter Preparation

As winter approaches, squirrels seek out spaces to escape the cold. For the Thirteen-lined ground squirrel, this means burrowing into spaces about one metre underground.

For other squirrels such as the tree and flying squirrels, these spaces may be tunnels in the ground or garages, sheds, barns and hallowed or dead trees. If these spaces already have food supplies (like a garage in which nuts and seeds are stored) then they are the proverbial pots of gold for squirrels. They hoard food supplies and accumulate fat in their bodies in preparation for the cold hard winter.

Torpor vs Active Foraging

In the winter, in order to save energy, ground squirrels go into a modified version of hibernation called torpor. During torpor squirrels slumber for long periods of time, waking up intermittently (about every ten days) to warm themselves and return to sleep.

Other squirrels remain active all year round. The layers of fat they stored up in the pre-winter weeks help them to weather the frigid temperatures in which they forage during winter. These are the squirrels that tend to invade garages, sheds and other spaces.

How You are Affected

The ground squirrels may seem pretty harmless as they are inactive for about six months, but when the burrow into your lawns they are actually damaging it and burrowing can negatively affect plants as well.

The tree and flying squirrels wreak obvious havoc as they forage for food all year round.  They damage lawns as they dig for food and ravage gardens, wildly reaping and nibbling what they can. On the upside though, their movement with seeds and nuts from one place to another helps to encourage and spread plant life.

How Humane Squirrel Removal Works

Squirrels go through a lot to make it through the winter. They deserve the dignity of humane animal removal when they find themselves unwelcome visitors to human spaces.

For squirrel removal that is humane and effective, you can always rely on Skedaddle. Skedaddle’s services are designed to ensure that your home is squirrel free and, at the same time, the squirrels are not harmed. We carefully remove and relocate squirrels in such a way that they are able to survive in their new spaces and then we get to work installing measures that ensure that squirrels remain away. In addition to squirrel-proofing your space, we also offer expert advice on how you can adjust your actions (like storage of bird seeds for example) to discourage squirrels from coming into your space.

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About the author:Founder of Skedaddle Humane Wildlife Control in 1989. Canada's largest urban wildlife removal and exclusion company. Industry leader and pioneer. Split, Scram, Scoot! However you want to say it, Skedaddle Humane Wildlife Control has helped over 200,000 home owners and businesses safely and effectively resolve their wildlife issues. Happy to discuss business and franchising opportunities

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