We independently select products & services. If you click the links on this page, we may earn a commission at no extra cost to you.

Do Squirrels Eat Cherries? (12 Ways to Keep Your Fruit Trees Safe!)

As a nature lover and expert on squirrels with years of experience observing them all around the world, I’m here to answer the question: do squirrels eat cherries? The answer is yes! But it’s important to understand if this is safe for them. In this blog post, I’ll explain why cherries can be part of a healthy diet for squirrels and provide tips on how to safely feed them.

Yes, squirrels do eat cherries. Along with seeds, nuts, and fruits, cherries are part of their regular diet.

  • In the wild: Squirrels forage for wild cherries or even steal from bird feeders when available.
  • At home: If you have cherry trees in your yard, squirrels may be tempted to snack on them.

Do Squirrels Eat Cherries?

When it comes to backyard wildlife, many people are curious about what squirrels do and don’t eat. Do squirrels eat cherries? Although they might not enjoy them as much as other fruits, there’s a chance they will if the situation is right. To explore this topic further let’s take a look at a squirrel’s diet and how wild and domestic squirrels interact with cherry trees.

What is a Squirrel’s Diet?

Squirrels are omnivorous mammals that are usually active in the daylight hours and feed on both plants and animals. They primarily feed on nuts, seeds, buds, fruit, fungi, bark and sometimes insects or small vertebrates like birds’ eggs. Many kinds of fruit such as apples or grapes attract squirrels because of their sweet taste but particularly when the fruit is slightly over ripe.

Do Wild Squirrels Eat Cherries?

In general wild squirrel populations prefer to forage for food in their natural environment which includes trees with berries or other fruits that have ripened until they fall off branches naturally. While some species of tree-dwelling rodents may specifically seek out cherry trees while searching for fallen fruits during late summer months when abundant aquatic sources are scarce.

Can Squirrels Eat Fruit Trees at Home?

It is a common question asked by gardeners and homeowners alike: can squirrels eat fruit trees? The short answer is yes, but there are some precautions that should be taken in order to protect your fruit trees from these mischievous rodents.

The first step in preventing squirrels from eating fruit trees is to make sure that the tree is properly protected. It’s important to keep the tree pruned and trimmed back so that there are no low branches for the squirrels to gain access to. Place bird netting around the trunk of the tree and use perimeter fencing with a one-inch mesh opening as an additional safeguard.

How to Keep Squirrels Away From Fruit Trees

Play Video

Preventing squirrels from ravaging your fruit trees takes dedication and the right knowledge, but luckily there are several steps you can take to insure the little critters don’t eat your fruits. Read ahead for some tips on how to protect your fruit trees from these unwanted guests.

1. Use Fences and Barriers to Deter Entry

Fencing is one of the best ways to keep squirrels at bay as they cannot climb or dig through solid barriers. A simple fence made out of chicken wire will be enough to stop them in their tracks; however, taller fences such as those meant for deer are also recommended. It’s important that the fence is securely installed so make sure it’s staked into the ground firmly.

The Best Squirrel-Proof Barriers

2. Motion-Activated Sprinklers

Adding a motion activated spray device onto the fence may provide an additional layer of protection against furry burglars, although this option can be pricey. Plus, if you have any four-legged friends who like to sunbathe near the fence line, you may want to avoid this option.

3. Grow Unappealing Food & Naturally Deterrent Plants

Squirrels don’t go for food they find unappealing. To protect your fruit trees, you can try growing plants they don’t usually like around the trees. Garlic and onions are an excellent choice as squirrels do not enjoy their scent. Planting marigolds around the garden and close to your fruit trees will also deter them, as they really dislike its pungent smell!

Naturally deterrent plants such as chili peppers and garlic can be planted around or mixed in with other types of vegetables in order to create an uninviting scent and taste for would-be diners. Alternatively if planting peppers isn’t ideal for your soil type, you can always grow them indoors.

  1. Choose varieties high in capsaicin content —Cayenne, That Birds Eye and Habanero peppers all have higher capsaicin levels than most others!
  2. Plant more diverse varieties —Squirrels might pick up on one variety easier than another; opt for different shapes, colors and forms of chili peppers.

The Anti-Squirrel Plants

4. Repellent Spray

Using hot pepper wax or a spray of cayenne pepper over foliage may help keep these critters away from your garden for good. You can create the squirrel repellent spray DIY or purchase some commercially available options.

Other commercially available sprays can also employ predator’s urine, such as coyote and others. Those can also be effective squirrel deterrents if you are ok to spray them around.

Just remember to spray the repellent regularly because it will be easily washed away by the rain.

5. Coffee Grounds

Squirrels don’t like the smell of coffee grounds, so you can put those around your garden and mix them with the soil to deter squirrels. Moreover, coffee grounds will also act as a fertilizer.

6. Offer Alternative Food & Water

A counterintuitive trick to keep squirrels away from your fruit trees is to offer them food and fresh water somewhere near your house but far enough from the trees in your yard.

Once the squirrels will start noticing that there is a constant supply of threats and freshwater over there, they are less likely to enter your garden, especially if you couple this with some additional deterrent. Squirrels will prefer the food and water option which requires them less effort.

Important: don’t underestimate the importance of providing them with fresh water, because, especially in the hot summer, they may be eating some of your fruits just because they are thirsty!

7. Use Squirrel-Proof Bird Feeders and Unsavory Seed

Keep them away with squirrel-proof bird feeders and unpleasant tasting seed. Bird feeders can be found at most hardware or pet stores and are designed to keep the squirrels out while still allowing birds to access the food. To deter squirrels, use seeds that have an unpleasant taste such as hot pepper, which they won’t eat. You can also buy pre-treated bird seed mixes or make your own with cayenne pepper.

Best Squirrel-Proof Bird Feeder

8. Keep Your Yard And Garden Tidy

Regularly cleaning up dead leaves, twigs and branches not only limits hiding spots but can reduce food sources too by removing potential nesting sites. Additionally, by tidying away piles of broken eggs shells or corncobs regularly – no squirrels will ever know leftovers were there in first place! Be sure not erase evidence like nuts before they become edible though – else what’s left behind could easily go unnoticed by unsuspecting visitors!

Also, don’t forget to regularly trim the branches of nearby trees to make it more difficult for squirrels to enter your yard. In fact, squirrels will feel less safe if they have to walk on the ground to reach your fruit trees instead of comfortably and safely jumping from one tree to another.

9. Employ A Watch Dog (Or Cat!)

While no pet can completely prevent all rodent intruders – having a guard dog (or cat!) around your property has been found effective by many homeowners. Despite being domesticated animals – cats still have natural hunting instincts while dogs give off territorial smells which tell trespassers “stay away”. Training both pets regularly never hurts either – so when problem arises they quickly react with utmost confidence!

10. Decoy Predators

Squirrels also have many natural predators, so they are always very alert about their surroundings. One harmless way to keep squirrels from entering your garden is to place some decoys of predators around it. Try placing an owl decoy somewhere close to your garden and where squirrels can clearly see it, this will deter them for a while.

Just remember to move the decoy around and place it in different spots or after some time the furry critters may notice that it is not a real owl.

11. Ultrasound & Lights

Ultrasonic devices and lights are both effective tools for protecting your fruit trees from unwanted visitors. Ultrasonic devices emit high-frequency sound waves that can scare away squirrels and other animals, while motion-activated lights can startle them with a bright flash of light when they enter an area. These solutions are easy to install and provide long-lasting protection for your trees.

The Best Squirrel Repellent

12. Trapping & Relocating the Squirrels

As a last resort option, you may also consider trapping and releasing the squirrels in a different area. Trapping and relocating squirrels may be necessary if other methods of discouraging their presence are unsuccessful.

Live traps baited with foods like peanuts or sunflower seeds prove very successful in trapping them for relocation away from gardens where they will no longer cause damage to crops or flowers.

WARNING Always check local laws before attempting any type of trapping on your property. Some states in the USA and Canada may have regulations regarding animal relocation.

Once trapped, take extra care when transporting wildlife, choose containers designed specifically for animals and make sure you release them as far away from residential areas as possible.

Finally, consider hiring professional pest control specialists for the job. This will ensure compliance with any additional regulations that may exist in your State.

Are There Any Negative Effects of Eating Too Many Cherries for Squirrels?

When it comes to our furry friends, the squirrels, there can be both positive and negative effects of eating too many cherries. As much as they love them, cherries are quite high in sugar content which can be detrimental if consumed excessively.

Too much sugar could lead to signs of indigestion such as fatigue and lethargy, along with gastrointestinal issues like diarrhea and vomiting. Cherries also contain a compound called amygdala that is known to be toxic when consumed in large quantities.

This means that prolonged or excessive consumption of cherries may lead to serious health problems for squirrels. Therefore, it is always best to feed them with moderation in order to avoid any adverse side effects.


So, do squirrels eat cherries? The answer is yes, but with caution. It is usually safe for them to consume cherries in small quantities, however it could be potentially harmful if they consume large amounts of the fruit. They can also be at risk of consuming pesticides and other chemicals that may have been applied to the cherries.

Therefore, while squirrels can eat cherries, it is important to exercise caution when doing so. Providing cherries as a regular part of a squirrel’s diet should be avoided as it can lead to health problems such as digestive issues. If you are considering offering your pet squirrel some cherries as an occasional treat, make sure that you only provide small amounts and that they haven’t been sprayed with any chemicals!

You may also be interested in reading: