Where Did All the Squirrels Go this Year in the Hudson Valley?
Do you have a love-hate relationship with squirrels? I know I do. I love to see them hanging out in the yard and running around, up and down in the trees. What I don't love is when they have emptied, yet again, my bird feeders of every kernel of bird food. I even tried putting in cayenne pepper in the bird food, because several people told me that would deter the squirrels.
This year, I have noticed that I have very few, if any, squirrels causing issues in my yard. Maybe it is because I didn't put out the bird feeders? But having a conversation with my neighbor, they mentioned it too, so I had to do some deeper investigating.
Where are all the squirrels this year?
Why there are so few squirrels comes down to two factors, neither of which you nor I can control. This last winter was fairly mild, which means that there was more wildlife like foxes who were hunting the little squirrels, using them as food. Less squirrels available to pro-create, mean less to run around our yards this summer.
What is the second biggest reason there are fewer squirrels this summer?
The other reason that there are fewer squirrels this summer is because of the acorn crop from last year. Acorns are one of the perfect food sources for squirrels. The mild weather in the winter, messed with the natural cycles of the trees producing those acorns. Squirrels were not the only ones who were affected by the lackluster acorn crops, birds, deer and even mice were too.
Will the squirrels be able to reproduce enough to be out bothering our bird feeders soon? The gestation period of a healthy squirrel is 44 days. So, anything is possible.