Backyard Critters: Squirrels

Squirrels are found all across North America in every setting imaginable. While many people try to get rid squirrels from their backyard, others grow to appreciate the activity the fluffy rodents add to the landscape. Attracting wildlife, such as squirrels, to your backyard requires many of the same strategies we have approached in the past to make your home friendly and inviting.

Squirrels are naturally skittish and do not like wide open spaces, like rabbits. Thick vegetation throughout your landscape provides them the cover that makes them feel safe and comfortable. Plant a few squirrel-friendly trees. Many trees have various qualities that will specifically attract squirrels, such as edible nuts or flowers, branching structure that creates the hollows and crooks that squirrels like to build their nests in, and easily scalable bark.

If you have dogs or cats, contain them in your home or to a section of your yard. Their constant presence in your backyard can deter squirrels from taking up residence in your landscape. Also be aware that squirrels often carry diseases and pests, such as fleas and ringworm. These can be carried into your home by your pet and spread to you.

Squirrels tend to scare off birds. If you like having birds around, separate your squirrel and bird feeding areas.

(Image:Mr.C's Wildlife Site)

Related: Backyard Birds: Purple Martins

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07.03.13  12:00PM    KAREN B

Categories: backyard habitat,gardening

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