Almost everybody can recognize a squirrel by its bushy tail. Energetic and crafty, it can be entertaining to watch different species of squirrels in your yard. Depending on the time of year, squirrels eat tender leaf buds, wild fruits, nuts and acorns, bird eggs, seed crops, or even tree bark.
Squirrels can become a problem if they abandon trees as their typical nesting location and relocate inside your attic. The diurnal critters are active throughout the day which can be a nuisance. If a female squirrel creates a nest in your attic, you might be wondering how long will this problem last?
What is a Squirrel's Life Expectancy?
Typically, about half the squirrels in a population die each year. Predators like hawks, owls, coyotes, bobcats, and snakes eat squirrels. Parasites, diseases, and falls can kill squirrels. Human interactions like car collisions also threaten squirrels.
Eastern Gray Squirrel Life Expectancy
At birth, the eastern grey squirrel (sciurus carolinensis) has life expectancy of only two years. In the wild, the maximum recorded life span for grey squirrels is 12 years. In captivity, squirrels can live up to 20 years.
Red Squirrel Life Expectancy
The average red squirrel lives five years, though the pests have great difficulty surviving their first year. 9 years is the longest recorded wild red squirrel lifespan.
Fox Squirrel Life Expectancy
On average, fox squirrels live for three to four years. In the wild, the life expectancy is six to seven years.
Ground Squirrel Life Expectancy
The average lifespan for the California ground squirrel is 3 to 4 years in the wild, but they can live as long as 6 years. In captivity, the recorded lifespan for the ground squirrel is 10 years.
Squirrel Life Cycle
Tree squirrels can have two litters a year. Flying squirrels, fox squirrels, and ground squirrels only have one litter a year.
Young are born without fur and aren’t ready to leave the nest for at least a month and a half. By the time two months pass, baby squirrels are typically weaned and on their own.
Gestation Period by Squirrel Species
|Sciurus Species||Gestation Period|
|Eastern Grey Squirrel||44 days|
|Fox Squirrel||44 Days|
|Flying Squirrel||40 Days|
|Red Squirrel||38 Days|
|Ground Squirrel||30 Days|
Since squirrels can live for a fairly long time and cause damage when they nest in yards and attics, homeowners usually aren’t pleased to see the pests.
Trimming tree branches away from your roof can help prevent squirrels from gaining access to your home. Installing squirrel deterrents on any bird feeders will make your property less attractive to squirrels.