What do Black Squirrels Eat? Uncover the Diet of Gray and Black Squirrels!

I have been fascinated with squirrels for many years and have spent a great deal of time observing black squirrels around the world. I can confidently say that these small rodents are incredibly diverse in their diets. In this article, we’ll explore what black squirrels eat, uncovering the diet of both gray and black squirrels! Keyword: What do black squirrels eat?

Black squirrels typically eat a variety of foods such as:

  • Seeds
  • Berries
  • Fruits
  • Nuts
  • Grains
  • Insects

What Do Black Squirrels Eat?

Black squirrels, which can be found across North America, eat a very diverse range of foods including nuts, acorns, seeds, fruit, insects and even bird eggs. They are omnivorous creatures that feed throughout the day, primarily on nuts and grains as their primary sources of nutrition.

A Variety Of Foods

Black squirrels have adapted to a variety of different diets that vary depending on what’s readily available in the area. Depending on their habitat or location, they may consume anything from fruits to insects. Some sources of food black squirrels enjoy include mushrooms, bark, leaves, pine needles, berries and roots.

  • Seeds
  • Berries
  • Fruits
  • Nuts
  • Grains
  • Insects

Protein Sources

The proteins in their diet helps them stay healthy and energetic. Squirrels feed on an array of insects like beetles larva and ants. They also consume other protein-rich food items like eggs from ground-nesting birds and mice.

Fat Sources

Squirrels need fat in their diet to survive in colder temperatures as it helps them store energy for the winter months. Nuts such as acorns and walnuts are great sources of fats for black squirrels along with bird eggs for added nutrition.

Carbohydrate Sources

Carbohydrates provide essential energy to the squirrel’s body, so they need to have a good mix of carbohydrates in their diet. Grains are one of the most common high-carb foods that these critters eat while they also eat other carbohydrate-rich fruits like apples.

Vitamin And Mineral Sources

In addition to providing its daily dose of calories, nuts contain a plethora of vitamins and minerals like iron, potassium, sodium and magnesium that the squirrel needs for various bodily functions. Fruits not only serve as a source of carbohydrates but also provide additional vitamins such as vitamin A and C.

Where Do Black Squirrels Live?

Habitats For Gray And Black Squirrels

Gray and black squirrels can be found in a variety of habitats including deciduous forests, coniferous forests, mixed-wood forests, urban spaces, and even suburban parks. Depending on the region, these furry rodents can be more common in certain areas. In the United States, for example, gray squirrels are more abundant in areas with many trees such as Boston or New York City. In contrast, black squirrels tend to thrive in regions with shorter trees like northern Ohio, parts of Canada and even in Mexico City. Ultimately, these adaptable rodents can live almost anywhere!

Common Locations For Black Squirrels

Black squirrels are found all across North America, and the presence of black color morphs of gray squirrel species is common in urban areas. They can also be spotted in forests, meadows or parks. Some of the most populous black squirrel habitats are located in parts of Canada and the United States, ranging from Washington state to Colorado and from Arizona to New York.

Squirrel-Proof Your Bird Feeder

Preventing Squirrel Access

Erecting a bird feeder in your backyard can provide an ideal place for black squirrels to find food. To keep them away, make sure to properly erect your bird feeder with a tall enough post that has a baffle on it. This will help deter them from accessing the seed, and making sure your bird feeder is securely fastened is also important. If you’re using a squirrel-proof bird feeder, be sure to check its effectiveness periodically.

There are several ways to keep black squirrels away from your feeders including using limits on the accessibility of food sources, installing baffles or using repellents like hot pepper sauce as deterrents.

Using Feeder Poles

Mounting your bird feeder on some type of pole is the best way to keep it elevated high above the ground where black squirrels cannot reach it. Metal poles work best for this purpose since they are less likely to fall over even if a squirrel does manage to climb up it. You should also ensure that there is no vegetation growing nearby for them to use as footholds or hiding places.

Be sure to choose a heavy-duty pole that will support the weight of both your bird feeder and any potential meddling visitors! Consider investing in a pole guard attachment which helps protect against animals climbing up the pole.

Setting Up A Squirrel Feeder

If you want the black squirrels around your yard but still want to protect your birds‘ food source, consider creating an alternate feeding station specifically designed for these critters. Place this somewhere away from your bird feeding locations such as higher branches of trees or nearby stumps.

You can then fill this feeder with items like peanuts, corn cobs, sunflower seeds and other types of nutritious nuts rather than sugary treats or seed mixes. Be sure not to overfeed them though so as not to disrupt their natural diet.

Using Feeder Spikes

Feeder spikes work by clamping onto branches or posts and preventing access by means of slippery surfaces that make climbing impossible for most animals. These spikes will also prevent larger birds from perching on top of the feeders and eating all the food before smaller birds can get their share.

Spikes are a great tool for protecting against larger animals but may not be suitable if you live in an area with small creatures such as mice or chipmunks. In such cases, it may be better to try out other options like electric fences or grease barriers instead.

Using Grease

A non-toxic animal safe grease can be spread along any surfaces that wildlife might climb over allowing them little chance of finding grip. This method should only ever be used sparingly and never applied directly onto plants or trees where small mammals could ingest it unintentionally.

Using An Electric Feeder

Using an electric feeder is a great way to keep gray and black squirrels away from your birdseed. Electric feeders use a low voltage shock that’s harmless to the squirrel, but enough to deter them from stealing your precious bird food. With an electric feeder, you can maintain control over who gets access to your bird feeding station – allowing only the birds to feast on the seeds you’ve provided!

Using Feeder Trays

Feeder trays, also known as feeder plates or pans, are a convenient and reliable way to provide food for squirrels while providing protection from predators. These trays are typically made of sturdy metal and placed in areas where squirrels can easily access them without having to climb too high. The trays should be large enough to accommodate several squirrels at once and the edges should be curved so that they can’t jump out or get injured trying to reach the food. Although these feeders won’t completely prevent squirrels from accessing other bird feeders, they do create a safe space for the animals to eat while keeping dangerous predators away.

Types Of Black Squirrels

Black squirrels come in both gray and black varieties. Gray black squirrels have lighter colored fur on their backs and dark gray fur on their bellies. They also have much larger ears than other types of squirrels. On the other hand, black squirrels have an entirely black coat with no distinction between their bellies and backs.

Gray and black-colored squirrels are found all across North America and even in some parts of Europe. In the United Kingdom, these mammals are known as Mountain Grey’s, owing to their origins in the Scottish Highlands. Meanwhile, in North America they tend to inhabit mainly woodland areas, but they also make appearances in residential areas located near green spaces.

Distinguishing Features Of Black Squirrels

  • Dark coats with white stripes running down their sides
  • Large bushy tails
  • Long pointed noses
  • Large triangular ears with tufts of hair at the tips

These distinguishing features make it easy to identify black squirrels in any location.

Gray And Black Squirrels In North America

In North America, gray and black-colored squirrels are classified under the Sciuridae family. This family covers species like red squirrels, fox squirrels, flying squirrels, chipmunks, woodchucks and groundhogs.

North American species of black-colored squirrel often show up at places such as city parks, university campuses and residential areas close to woodlands. If you’re out for a walk in one of these locations, you might catch a glimpse of a curious tail twitching around nearby trees.

Note: it’s important not to approach or try to feed wild animals – observe these creatures from afar!

The striking feature about Mountain Grey’s is that unlike other recolored rodents who usually have brownish patches along their back, these boast an entirely solid gray coat – making them look almost like mini black bears! Though they’re slightly smaller than regular gray or recolored tree dwelling rodents.1

  • Small bushy tails
  • Dark heads
  • Fluffy coats

Black Squirrels In The UK

Black squirrels are found all across the UK, but are most commonly sighted in Scotland and England. They primarily eat a diet of nuts, acorns, seeds, fruit, insects and sometimes bird eggs. Although black squirrels can be beneficial by dispersing tree seeds and providing food for predators, they can also damage crops and trees. It is important to be aware of their presence when living or travelling near woodlands.

Behavior Of Black Squirrels

Black squirrels are active all year round, but their behavior is especially noticeable in late winter when mating occurs. During this period, the black squirrels become very active in foraging for food, finding nesting sites and marking out territories. They may even chase each other around trees or engage in playful activities such as chasing and jumping. After mating season, they typically retreat to hollows in trees or build nests from twigs, leaves, and grasses to rest and raise their young.

Mating Habits Of Black Squirrels

Black squirrels mate during the winter months, typically December through the end of January. During this time, males will compete for the attention of females by chasing, fighting and displaying their size or fur coloration. The successful male will protect its associated female, providing food and shelter until mating occurs.

Hibernation And Migration Of Black Squirrels

Black squirrels hibernate and migrate during colder months. Hibernation occurs from late fall to early spring, while migration usually happens in the winter as temperatures drop. During this time, they store up food for energy and seek out warmer climates or areas with greater food source availability. With their keen senses and remarkable agility, they can travel long distances to find a better home.

Communication And Social Behavior Of Black Squirrels

Black squirrels communicate with one another primarily through vocal and visual cues. They also have scent glands that can be used to mark territory, and these scents help them recognize each other when they meet in their home range. Male black squirrels typically establish a home range and defend it from other males. They will use vocalizations and postures to threaten or approach others who are perceived as adversaries.

Communication between black squirrels is also used for courtship and mating. During the mating season, males may follow females around and make calls or perform other behaviors to attract them. Once a female agrees to mate, the pair will spend time together over several days or weeks, depending on the species.

Health And Care Of Black Squirrels

Black squirrels are relatively hardy animals, but they can suffer from certain health problems such as parasites, fungal infections, fur mites, mange, nutrition deficiencies, diseases of the reproductive tract, bacterial infections and more. If any of these conditions go unnoticed or untreated it can lead to serious complications or even death.

It is important that any pet owners of black squirrels ensure that their animals receive regular veterinary check-ups in order to identify any potential health issues early on before they become serious. Furthermore, diet plays an important factor in maintaining good health in black squirrels, so owners should carefully monitor what their animals are eating in order to provide them with a balanced diet.

Health Concerns For Black Squirrels

Common health issues for black squirrels include malnutrition due to poor diets or lack of food sources, stress due to fear or unfamiliar environments, parasites such as fleas or ticks which can carry deadly diseases such as Lyme’s disease, tuberculosis caused by mycobacteria found in infected carcasses or predator droppings, bacteria found in contaminated water sources which can cause gastrointestinal distress like salmonella and cholera, tumors caused by cell damage caused by long term exposure to radiation or chemicals like herbicides and pesticides.

Vaccinations against distemper virus (CDV), arbovirus (CPV), rabies virus (RV) and canine hepatitis (CHV) should be given yearly for pet black squirrels. Owners should also consider vaccinating against leptospirosis if their pet is in frequent contact with wildlife or livestock.

Caring For Injured Or Orphaned Black Squirrels

If you find an injured or orphaned black squirrel do not attempt to care for it yourself as this could put you at risk if the animal has any contagious diseases. Contact your local wildlife center immediately as they will be able to give you advice on how best to handle the situation safely and humanely.

If you encounter an injured adult black squirrel avoid approaching it directly as attempting to pick up an adult animal may cause additional injury. If possible contain the area until a wildlife service is able to come take it away. For babies however you can scoop up gently into a cardboard box with padding material such as towels before transporting it away.

Preventing Disease In Black Squirrels

The best way for owners of pet black squirrels to prevent diseases is by providing a clean living environment and a healthy diet. Pet environments should be regularly cleaned out removing bedding materials that may have been contaminated by feces. Pet food should also be checked regularly for freshness, mold or foreign objects.

  • Limit contact with wild rodents who may carry infectious diseases
  • Remove uneaten food after each feeding

Common Diseases In Black Squirrels

Common diseases in black squirrels include canine distemper, tularemia, leptospirosis, and arbovirus. Rabies is also seen in some areas. These diseases can cause dehydration, weight loss, neurological signs, poor appetite, diarrhea, respiratory issues and even death. Prevention is an important way to ensure the health of black squirrels. Vaccination, proper sanitation techniques and avoiding contact with wild animals can all help reduce the risks of diseases.

Preventing Disease In Black Squirrels

The best way for owners of pet black squirrels to prevent diseases is by providing a clean living environment and a healthy diet. Pet environments should be regularly cleaned out removing bedding materials that may have been contaminated by feces. Pet food should also be checked regularly for freshness, mold or foreign objects.

  • Limit contact with wild rodents who may carry infectious diseases
  • Remove uneaten food after each feeding

Conservation Of Black Squirrels


Unfortunately due to habitat loss caused by human activity such as urbanization and deforestation threatened habitats where black squirrel populations live leading them vulnerable to predation from larger predators like owls hawks foxes coyotes etc.

Unregulated hunting trapping poaching the spread of invasive species competition from non-native species, road traffic pollution, fragmentation of habitat, and illegal commerce has all lead to a decrease of populations of gray squirrels, or completely wiped out isolated populations.

This is why it’s important to have an educated public about importance conserving threatened habitats.


How often do black squirrels appear in a general population?

Black squirrels are an unusual sight, occurring only in approximately 1 in 10,000 individuals. This rarity is due to a genetic mutation that results in their distinctive black coloring.

Why are black squirrels not as common as other squirrels?

Black squirrels are comparatively rare due to a genetic mutation leading to their dark fur. On average, only one in every 10,000 squirrels is black. This uncommon factor makes it difficult for them to blend into their habitat and find food and protection, thus affecting their chances of survival.

How uncommon is it to observe a black squirrel?

The black squirrel is quite rare, making up only around one in every 10,000 tree squirrels. This is due to a genetic mutation resulting in their unique charcoal hue. If you’re lucky enough to come across one of these creatures, it’s undoubtedly an exquisite sight to behold!


Black squirrels are omnivores, meaning they feed on a mix of plant foods and small animals as well. To meet their nutritional needs, black squirrels eat seeds, berries, fruits, nuts, grains, and insects. As long as these food sources are available, black squirrels can find plenty to eat.

Now you know what do black squirrels eat – a variety of seeds, berries, fruits, nuts, grains and insects! In order to maintain a healthy diet, it’s important for them to have access to all of these items. With the right balance of nutrition in their diet, these unique squirrels can stay healthy and thrive.

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