two red squirrels

When Is Squirrel Mating Season?

Have you ever noticed a sudden increase in activity and the number of squirrels in your backyard? Mating season is likely upon you. Every year, squirrels embark on a mission to find their mate during winter and spring.

Mating season for squirrels typically occurs twice a year, between December to February and May to June. During this time, squirrels become more active and involved in a “chase” where the males hunt for potential mates. 

Male gray squirrels are polygamous, meaning they may mate with multiple females. So, it’s common to see multiple males and females engage in loud chases through trees and yards.

You will often hear a lot of noise coming from your backyard as squirrels begin to chatter and squeak. This is a sign that they are trying to attract each other’s attention.

The most important thing to remember is to give the squirrels space. It’s natural for them to get aggressive with each other, but if you intervene, it could put their safety in danger.

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Key Pest Points

• Squirrels mating season happen twice a year, in December through February and May through June.

• The squirrel gestational period can last from 28 – 44 days, depending on the type.

• Squirrels are polygamous, so it’s not unusual to see multiple males and females engage in loud chases through trees and yards.

Squirrel Mating Behaviors

During mating season, male squirrels will use a variety of tactics to attract female mates. They may make loud noises, chatter, and squeak to get potential mates’ attention.

Females will also give off scent marks to let the males know they are available. Once a male has identified a potential mate, he will start chasing her in a behavior known as “chase and pursue.”

The female may run up trees or onto rooftops while the male follows behind. This type of courtship can be seen throughout nature but is especially noticeable during mating season.

two squirrels mating on a log

Both males and females may have multiple partners during the mating season. But the first successful mating will usually determine the paternity of any offspring.

The gestation period or the pregnancy can take around 28 – 44 days, depending on the type of squirrel. The babies will then stay with their mothers for approximately 10-12 weeks until they are ready to venture out on their own.

Mating season is an important part of a squirrel’s life cycle, and people must respect this natural process. By giving them the space they need and not intervening, you’re helping to maintain their safety and allow them to reproduce.

It’s best to observe these animals in action from a distance. And to call in a wildlife expert if you ever find yourself in a tricky situation with squirrels. After all, they need our help to survive and reproduce during this critical time of year.

Squirrel Nesting Habits

To prepare for the incoming babies, squirrels often build nests in secure, out-of-the-way places. The mother squirrel spends weeks collecting sticks and twigs to create a safe and cozy home for her young.

She may construct one or several nests depending on how many litters she is expecting. These nests can be found high up in trees or tucked away in cavities.

Nests are essential since they provide shelter, warmth, and protection from predators. Inside the nest, female squirrels will give birth to their young and care for them until they are ready to venture out independently.

baby red squirrel in a straw nest

Once the babies have grown enough, usually after 10 -12 weeks, they will leave the nest and start exploring their environment.

At this point, the mother squirrel will teach them how to find food, climb trees, and stay safe from predators.

Since squirrels are not nocturnal animals, they will not be out and about during the night. So, you’re most likely to spot them with their young during the day or around dusk when they are beginning to settle in for the night.

With time, the young squirrels will become independent and be ready to mate themselves when the next mating season rolls around.

How To Prevent Squirrels From Entering Your Home and Yard

During squirrel mating season, it’s not uncommon for these animals to find their way into your homes, such as your attic and yard, since they are looking for a safe place to build a nest.

Here are a few steps you can take to keep these animals away from your space: 

• Securely cover windows and doors: Ensure that your doors and windows are correctly sealed so squirrels can’t find their way in. They can squeeze through small cracks, so check for potential entry points.

• Remove food sources from the yard: Remove any potential food sources from your yard or garden. This includes bird feeders, compost piles, and pet food that may attract squirrels looking for a meal.

• Put up a fence: Installing a fence around your yard can also help keep squirrels out and give you some peace of mind. It’s best to use a solid fence, such as a metal or electric fence since these animals can easily climb over wooden fences.

• Trim tree branches: Cut down any branches on trees near your home since they may provide an easy route of access for squirrels. You should also consider trimming tall grass or shrubs that may give them a hiding place.

• Plant squirrel repellents: Certain plants, such as alliums and onions, can help repel squirrels and keep them away from your property. These plants also have a strong scent that can help deter other pests. However, they are not a foolproof solution, so it’s best to employ other methods in addition to planting these repellents.

squirrel inside a trap

• Use live traps: If all else fails, you can always use a humane trap to capture the squirrel and trap other animals, like skunks and raccoons, to ensure they don’t make their way into your home. But remember to release the pests far away from your home so it doesn’t come back, and to understand local wildlife laws, so you don’t break any regulations.

• Install motion-activated sprinklers or lights: If you have a garden or lawn, installing motion-activated sprinklers or lights can help scare away any squirrels lurking around. These devices can be triggered by motion or sound and emit a loud noise or spray water, making the squirrels think twice about entering your property.

• Place squirrel scent repellent around your home and yard: You can use scent repellents containing fox urine or other predator scents to keep squirrels away. It’s best to place these repellents around entry points and other areas where squirrels may be entering or nesting.

Following these steps can help keep your home and yard free of annoying, unwanted visitors during mating season.

However, if the problem persists, it’s best to call a professional wildlife removal service to help eliminate them. They will be able to assess the situation and determine the best course of action for removing these pesky critters once from your property.

Squirrel Mating FAQS

Now that you know more about squirrel mating season let’s answer some common questions.

When Do Squirrels Have Babies?

Squirrels typically give birth to their young in spring or early summer. The squirrel gestation period lasts anywhere from 28-44 days, depending on the type. Pregnant squirrels usually build nests to give birth and care for their young.

How Many Babies Do Squirrels Have?

Most species of squirrels typically give birth to two or four babies at a time, although it’s not unheard of for them to have more.

Do Squirrels Mate for Life?

No, squirrels do not mate for life. They typically have multiple partners during the mating season and will mate with any males in their current territory.

Are Squirrels Aggressive During Mating Season?

Yes, male squirrels can be aggressive during mating season as they compete with each other for the attention of female mates.

Overall, it’s essential to understand the behavior of squirrels during mating season to keep yourself and your property safe. Keep these tips in mind, and always be cautious when dealing with wildlife.

Make sure to contact a professional if you ever need help removing an animal from your property. With the proper knowledge and patience, you can ensure that this mating season goes smoothly for everyone involved.


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