Can Squirrels Harm Chickens or Eggs

Discussion in 'Predators and Pests' started by Booswalia, May 14, 2011.

  1. Booswalia

    Booswalia Songster

    I saw a squirrel in the chicken pen today. Likely going inside the coop to eat seeds but can a squirrel be dangerous to the chickens or the eggs? These are the little Red Squirrels not those big Grey things. We don't have those here.
  2. smokeykk

    smokeykk Songster

    Mar 15, 2011
    I'm wondering the same thing. But we do have the gray ones here.
  3. Razadia

    Razadia The Odd One

    Apr 7, 2011
    Montgomery, Alabama
    They're only a threat to grain and feed. Don't quote me on this, but I think I read somewhere that squirrels can't carry rabies. Besides, they don't want your chickens or eggs as they don't eat either. Trust me on this, I raised them for years.
  4. Nambroth

    Nambroth Fud Lady

    Apr 7, 2011
    Western NY
    My Coop
    More likely the squirrel will be happy to eat as much chicken feed as it can possibly stuff itself with. Then it will come back for more and hoard/cache it. Don't underestimate how much feed they can steal.

    However, tree squirrels (greys, fox, reds/pine, etc) love wild bird eggs. I imagine if they knew what they were getting they would be happy to relieve you of an egg or two! I don't know if it is common for them to take or eat chicken eggs or not. I know red squirrels are especially fond of raiding wild bird nests. There have been surprising studies on how many eggs and tiny baby chicks red squirrels take. I don't know if they could manage a baby chicken chick-- the baby birds that they typically take are not mobile and restricted to a nest (unlike baby chickens!).

    pose no real threat to adult chickens other than food theft, and possible property destruction.

    Razadia, any mammal can get rabies, but is is true that squirrels are not a common vector. I would not be concerned about rabies being spread by squirrels.
  5. ShortCircuitRanch2332

    ShortCircuitRanch2332 Songster

    Mar 12, 2011
    Oak Hills
    I posted a few weeks back about myself having some serious problems with Ground squirrels, as they were killing and eating all the baby cottontails in and around my yard I was constantly finding them half eaten and even seen the squirrels eating them

    since then I've brought out the old .22 and started an extermination of squirrels because while having my chicks free range my grass on the warm days I had 2-3 of them at separate times chase them around and I know what they had in mind so idk if tree squirrels are the same way but reading up on it in early spring the squirrels are protein packing for their litters and WILL eat little birds, mice, small rabbits, voles, lizards,bird eggs, and so on and a baby rabbit IS bigger than a chick
    Last edited: May 15, 2011
  6. FireTigeris

    FireTigeris Tyger! Tyger! burning bright

    I had a squirrel steal a medium sized (pullet egg of a RIR) egg and roll it off.

    My husband saw it happen again two days later- he thought I was crazy...

    "Hon do squirrels eat eggs?"

    "I donnno why?"

    "There's one out here rolling an egg up a tree..."

    "Sure there is... maybe its a corn husk or something..."

    "No, its an egg..."


    Filling an old eggshell with hot sauce did wonders for my tree rat...
    1 person likes this.
  7. NoseyChickens

    NoseyChickens Feathers On The Ground

    Aug 3, 2009
    Southern California
    I have a serious problem with ground squirrels stealing my eggs. I also recently had a newly hatched chick go missing from under a broody hen who was alone in her own little coop and I'm pretty sure the squirrels took it.
  8. Lacey1988

    Lacey1988 Songster

    Apr 7, 2011
    Squirrels don't eat meat...they love seeds,nuts etc.
    1 person likes this.
  9. FireTigeris

    FireTigeris Tyger! Tyger! burning bright

    Quote:I have in fact seen squirrels eat 'meat', they are not obligate herbivores (rabbits) - they steal catfood when it is out in the daytime.

    They are not hunter like dogs or cats, but if they find an easy meal- they will eat, especially in nesting seasons.
  10. iluvsedward

    iluvsedward Crowing

    Jan 19, 2010
    Calvert County MD
    Quote:they eat wild baby birds and wild bird eggs

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