As the days grow shorter, food for the woodland creatures becomes scarce. I don’t know about you, but I find squirrels to be some of the most entertaining fur-bearers in the forest. I enjoy their antics and find them extremely amusing. I know that as winter creeps in I will end up seeing less and less of them as they gather food for their long winter nap. In order to show my appreciation for all the amusement they provide me during the year, I like to give them little food gifts to help with their stockpiling project. If you have some neighborhood squirrels you’d like to help out this winter, then you might enjoy the following tips and tricks.
Tip: Make sure all of your animals are ready for winter.
Local nuts are the best present you can give squirrels. People like to feed them peanuts, which is a legume, not a nut, and don’t stop to think about how peanuts aren’t something a squirrel would normally eat. Take a look around at the local nut trees in your area. Hickory nuts, beechnuts, walnuts, and butternuts are all great options. Gather some of these nuts up and put them in a pile near a tree you’ve seen the squirrels hang out in. They’ll appreciate the collection and it will give them a bit of a head start too.
Sunflower seeds are a good treat too. Most people have seen the way squirrels raid the bird feeders and it’s generally because they want to eat the sunflower seed inside. You can also order the recipe for making Squirrel Biscuits or whip up some nut balls for a little treat. Dried corn is also usually a good attractant for squirrels too and a lot of feed stores sell a mix of corn, sunflower seeds, and peanuts in the shell as squirrel food.
If you love animals you might want to have some of your own. Here’s our recommendation to help you get started with another small furry creature: [sc:rabbits ]
Where to Put the Goodies
You can place the treats in a designated area for squirrels to find or build them a special feeder. Here are some plans for a couple of different kinds of squirrel feeders. If you don’t have time to make anything, you can buy a pre-made squirrel feeder (Amazon) or just a large dish. Make sure it doesn’t get filled with water or snow and make all the feed soggy. It’s best to put the dish or feeder in a place where squirrels will find it easily. Who knows, they might even tell their friends!
Tip: How To Store Nuts [for humans! :)]
Any goodies you decide to provide for your squirrely friends will be accepted with open arms! When you notice the squirrels aren’t coming around anymore, you can empty the feeders out. They’ll be back when the weather warms up and they need to look for more food. Since they don’t hibernate, you might see one or two pop up now and then during the winter, so be ready for them!
What ways do you help out your woodland friends now?
Awwe great post. I love squirrels and have a little squad that eats out of my yard and off my porch daily. I didn’t realize Peanuts might not be the best thing. There are some in the bags of squirrel feed I buy. Maybe I need to look around for some good nuts for them!!
Donna from Iowa says
I love doing things for the little ones during the winter times. I make “Jiffy” corn bread mixes and add, Corn, Blueberries or apple any kind of fruit really. Then I add vegetables, like corn, collard greens (cut up really fine) peanut butter nutty kind, grind up the egg shells and put them in the mix, sometimes I add hauled seeds, millet, sunflower, pumping (some kind) walnuts. They love it. I cut in in little squares and put out in the feeder. Do it all winter.
Oh wow your comment really caught my eye as I was reading through this webpage!
We share the same passion when it comes to animals-wildlife with feeding/giving them treats
I’ve always loved to help all animals. Personally giving the little finches handfuls of seed and a bit of multi grain hearty nut seeded bread they absolutely love and in return I have the joy of hearing their singing aloud while watching them =)
It’s beyond peaceful&almost therapeutic, a true blessing.
God’s creations are amazingly wonderful*
I can talk for days haha
Do you have any other ideas on what to give squirrels in the late/fall winter time? I usually go to the local grocer market for my food& other goods & while there I get some nuts+food for the squirrels birds other wildlife as well.
It’s expensive so to find better pricing would definitely be a god send.
Lately I’ve been thinking it may be more beneficial to go elsewhere and browse around online for an overall better deal as well as a wider selection.
Unfortunately I have not yet been able to locate an affordable quality supplier.
Would you mind sharing the recipe and how to on this squirrel treat you mentioned here?
Any helpful hints or tips would be greatly appreciated!
Thanks a bunch
God’s blessings to you & yours!
Ruthie Bartling says
P.S. I am an unmarried female senior, mother and grandmother, handicapped, and with the military.
Do you give a senior or military discount on your products???? I live in San Antonio, TX 78233
Do squirrels eat horse chestnuts (UK).
I really need help
I have an squirrel and I want to release it in the nature after some days, my issue is that the weather is cold here and there is some snow,
I want to release my squirrel because I think that she is depressed in the cage.
Im afraid to release it because I think that she will dye because of cold weather,
My question is that should I release it in this situation (cold weather) or not?
Will she tolerate with the cold weather or not? (the weather is about 0 °C)
Sue from Michigan says
You should release it in your backyard so you can continue too feed everyday also put water out even wild animals need time to adjust ..bless u for ur care. !
I have a squirrel that has been coming in and out of my ceiling all winter :( If I make it a house before next winter will it stop coming into my house ? I think squirrels are cute, but don’t want one nesting in my ceiling. I’m waiting for snow to be gone so I can go around house and find out where it is coming in.
Its kind of you too wait till spring if you can if its entering in thru attic try too make a nest area box and put food by it in daylite hours take a bright flashlite move slow in case maybe baby’s…bless u
I, too, am an animal lover but squirrel can cause a lot of damage inside your attic and should be removed as soon as possible, humanely, of course, if for no other reason than for the potential fire hazard they present with chewing electrical wiring. Squirrels chew everything….include wooden structures (think beams,) insulation, which, believe it or not, can cause water damage, and ruin stored items….just to name a few. Simply blocking off an existing entrance to keep them out usually doesn’t work…..they simply remove it and they carry on as usual. They are stubborn little buggers. Short of calling a professional, I have, in the past, set humane traps and my husband would transport them many miles away in a nice wooded area he passes on his way to work and he releases them. Release them too close to home, though, and they often times will find their way back…..hence the car ride. Entrances were then repaired.
I am wondering if the wild squirrels in my back yard would make use of some little squirrel blankies in their nests. It’s now late January, so certainly their nests are long completed. If I placed some squirrel-sized pieces of fleece or terrycloth on a low branch of their favorite tree – would the squirrels eventually take their little gift home and cozy up?
I do realize it’s too cold right now in Iowa for the squirrels to be very active. When it’s eventually warm enough for them to venture out though… is there a point in offering them squirrel friendly fabrics? Or will I only cause my neighbors question my choice of wardrobe and laundering habits?
Thanks for your article! Fun read! Squirrels make the best saucy & silly back yard entertainment! My 3 littles, dog, and cat strongly agree!
Michelle Avizenis says
They steal my small Texas and American flags from my planters! Also they took all the stuffing out of one of my chair cushions! Watching them is worth it?
I don’t know about squirrels, but they say not to give outdoor dogs and cats anything made of fabric in the winter because when it gets wet from melting snow and wet paws/fur it can freeze to the animal and it can cause them to die. They say to use straw for bedding instead. I would think this could apply to squirrels, also.
I had squirrels in my attic. lots of squirrels! So much so that they were making their way through my ceiling and caused a big ruckus at night. The first time I hired a “professional” with have a heart traps and said I absolutely do not want them killed but caught no squirrels. Plugged the holes. two years later they made their way into my attic ceiling again. My dog and cat go crazy. I call the same professional, catch no squirrels the without me knowing they used a claw trap. I came home to a squirrel stabbed through the middle hanging from my roof above my front door. I threw a fit. He replaced it with a different trap. A squirrel got trapped but it was 5pm and he would not come get it. It was getting below freezing. I was frantic he would freeze to death. My husband and are are both in our upper 60s. I was so upset my husband tried to get up and release him. it was a second story and starting to snow and it was dark. the trap was secured to the roof. we couldn’t get it down. I worried all night but in the morning he was gone. The professional was pissed. Last week he came back and took his traps after nothing was caught. He charged us $400. But at least he supposedly patched the hole. Now for my question would the squirrel have died from hypothermia? I could only tell myself hypothermia was better than being stabbed through bv the middle if he didnt die right away. At least with hypothermia you fall a sleep.
Claudene Vaughan says
I couldn’t see how squirrels survive 8 degree weather? Water is frozen but I throw out peanuts, bird seed and sunflower seeds. First come, first serve.
Gale Lord says
Thank You for being such a kind person. I feed all the little creatures too! I love watching them, they’re adorable and so entertaining. I love all animals and wish I could help them all. I do what I can! God Bless and Stay Safe!
Sincerely, Gale from Massachusetts!
Lucien Fecteau says
i have them living in my garage in a big nest box i made them to get them out of my ccamp…In rgw winter i go there once a aweek to bring them goodies which they haul in their box right away ..In the fall i had a duvet that had a rip in it so i put it close to the nest box now all the stuffing has gone in their homeso im sure they woont be cold ..I had to make another box for their food goodies…I just love them