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Old 10-09-2008, 07:43 PM
MissDolittle's Avatar
MissDolittle MissDolittle is offline
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Texas
Posts: 2,813
Default Squirrel Diet

Here is a list of just about all the foods an adult squirrel (or a squirrel that is weaning) can and cannot have. Feel free to add or revise!

Rodent Block:
Daily Recommendation: 2 - 4 small blocks
Recommended brands:
  • Harlan Teklad Rodent Diets
  • KayTee Forti-Diet for Rats and Mice

Vegetables that are High in Calcium
Daily Recommendation: 5-7 small pieces
  • beet greens
  • endive
  • carrots
  • celery
  • chicory
  • chinese cabbage
  • cilantro
  • chrysanthemum flowers
  • collard greens
  • dandelion greens
  • escarole
  • fennel
  • kale
  • lettuce
  • mustard
  • spinach
  • parsley
  • radicchio
  • radishes
  • romaine lettuce
  • squash
  • turnip greens
  • watercress

Healthy Vegetables
Daily Recommendation: 2-3 small pieces
  • asparagus
  • artichokes
  • bell peppers
  • broccoli
  • brussels sprouts
  • cabbage
  • carnations
  • cauliflower
  • cucumber
  • green beans
  • okra
  • peas
  • pumpkin
  • squash
  • sweet potato
  • zucchini

Wild and Natural Foods:
Daily Recommendation: unlimited while in season.
  • magnolia cones
  • pine cones
  • pine branches
  • pine bark
  • branch tips
  • roses
  • purslane
  • plaintain
  • dandelion greens
  • whatever the wild squirrels outside in your neighborhood are eating is what's natural to their diet. Be careful while gathering them and rule out that the area hasn't been treated with pesticides.

Animal Protein:
  • ive or dried mealworms
  • crickets
  • live moths
  • hard-boiled eggs
  • cheese
  • plain yogurt

Daily Recommendation: 2 slices
  • apple
  • apricot
  • bananas
  • blackberries
  • blueberries
  • cantaloupe
  • cherries
  • crabapples
  • cranberries
  • grapefruit
  • grapes
  • honeydew
  • kiwi
  • kumquats
  • lemon
  • lime
  • mangos
  • oranges
  • nectarines
  • papaya
  • passion fruit
  • peaches
  • pears
  • pineapple
  • pomegranates
  • raspberries
  • strawberries
  • watermelon

Nuts and Seeds:
Daily Recommendation: 2 nuts, still in shell.
  • acorns
  • almonds
  • hazelnuts
  • macadamia nuts
  • pecans
  • pistachios
  • peanuts
  • roasted unsalted pumpkin seeds
  • sesame seeds (high in calcium)
  • walnuts

Something to Chew On:
  • antlers
  • tree branches
  • sea shells
  • cuttlebone


  • all dried vegetables or fruits
  • avocados (high in fat, toxic skin and pits)
  • pototato sprouts
  • garlic
  • onions
  • palm hearts
  • fresh or dried corn
  • yams
  • figs
  • fruit juice
  • plums
  • prunes
  • raisins
  • cashew nuts
  • sunflower seeds
  • pine nuts (will cause calcium loss)
  • commercial squirrel food at stores, pet treats, seed mixes
  • pasta
  • bread
  • sugary foods such as candy, cookies, sodas, sweetened yogurt, candy nuts, sweetened breakfast cereals, chocolate etc
  • junk foods, chips, crackers, anything salted
  • artificial sweeteners or any food items that contain them
Licensed Wildlife Rehabilitator (Texas)
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Old 10-13-2008, 08:44 PM
jlich jlich is offline
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Join Date: Sep 2008
Posts: 10
Default Re: Squirrel Diet

wow! thanks for the diet tips. I already see some mistakes I have been making. These two eat 12 acorns, 12 unshelled pecans, 8 unshelled sunflower seeds, 10 pine nuts.These are the amounts for a 24 hour period. Thats just the nuts. Vegetables and fruits are also given 3 times daily. They are looking fat! Or perhaps just well rounded. My husband says they will be hard to rehab because food is not so plentiful out there. This brings me to my next point. We still have not found a place to begin the release process. We have no trees left in our back yard due to the hurricane. Busy streets in the front of the house and cats. Plus there is a leash law for cats in my neighborhood, and my cats live in a specialized fence in the back yard. So they can be free and not tied up. Again, can we drive our little squirrels to you? They will be approximately 10 weeks old this coming Saturday. We have bought a big three story cage, we bought nesting boxes this past weekend and put twigs and leaves and dried grass to see how they would react. They just moved off the heating pad today. Also I brushed my cats really good and saved the hair for them to line thier nests, but I haven't given them the cat hair because I don't know if this is ok or not. PLEASE, WE WILL DRIVE THEM TO YOU! WE JUST WANT THEM TO HAVE A CHANCE AND BE SAFE. We cannot provide that in the city we live in. I'm getting worried. They have fully recovered from thier wierd illness and we believe it was the formula. The little boy began rejecting formula today. He drinks water from a ceramic dish, so does his sister but she still wants the syringe. Thanks to everyone for thier support and help.
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Old 10-14-2008, 07:51 AM
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MissDolittle MissDolittle is offline
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Texas
Posts: 2,813
Default Re: Squirrel Diet

I really love everything you do for them, but once they are weaned and crack their nuts, it is ok to take them to a public park and release them there.

There is one main reason why it won't do any good to drive them all the way up here besides a ride being very stressful on the animals, and that is that we do not have gray squirrels living up here in the area.

I have 8 gray squirrels left here that need to be transferred back to Houston or at least into a southern area where gray squirrels are native to, because I can't release them here at all.

Oh, I'd lay off the cat hair. Old t-shirts do just fine (no terry cloth). Even though I never heard of using cat hair for a nest, I can't imagine it to be a good thing since cats are predators to squirrels. But who knows, just because I haven't heard of it before doesn't mean it can't did you hear about that?
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Old 10-14-2008, 10:23 AM
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Fluffytial Fluffytial is offline
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Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Indiana
Posts: 281
Default Re: Squirrel Diet

That is a good list MissD. It is nice to have it all in one spot. Some of the veggies gave me some fresh ideas to offer to candy corn.
My two cents worth:
We found our squirrels didn't like pine branches or pine bark. They avoided it like the plague. But they loved pine cones.
Ours wouldn't eat any milk product such as yogurt or cheese after they weaned.
Corn here is a big part of a squirrels diet. In the fall especially when the farmer are harvesting their corn fields there are squirrels galore stealing ears off the plants or eating up what has been spilled.
We give our squirrels yam/sweet potatos, dried cranberries,sunflower seeds, fruit juice and cookies. Of course the cookies and fruit juice are only occasionaly.
We do feed our mainly in shell nuts and greenery from outdoors. Also fruits and some fresh veggies.
And like you said anything a squirrel eats outside they can eat inside just be sure the food hasn't been treated with any pesticides.
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