Do Squirrels Grieve/Mourn their Dead Babies/Adults – FIND OUT!

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Do squirrels mourn their dead? From experience, I have seen squirrels grieve after the loss of a loved one.

I also watched a recent show on TV where they explored rodent brains and made an interesting discovery – squirrels have the same physical areas of the brain that process empathy and emotion etc. as rats.

Yeah, I’m no scientist, but why would animals have that area developed in their brain if it didn’t do shit?

Do Squirrels Mourn the Loss of Their Babies?

If a baby dies, the mommy squirrel mourns it. I’ve watched it happen many times.

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For adult squirrels, it’s far more complicated than that. Tree squirrels are almost 100% solitary when adults so they hardly have friend or family relationship that other animals share.

But, in rare cases, some litter mates do hang out together for a while as adults and play with one another while helping each other rise in their pecking order.

So, if one dies the other will definitely sense a bit of loss and may want to be left alone. Now, does that sense of loss translate to our antgroporphises definition of mourning? I wouldn’t think so. But, I’ve never seen a study to indicate one way or another.

ALSO SEE: Why is my Baby Squirrel Not Moving but Breathing?

Do Squirrels Get Sad?

As earlier stated, I believe squirrels can feel a sense of loss and sadness.

One thing you should remember is that wild animals do not show emotions the way we do. This is because any sign of weakness could make them target for an attack.

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It’s really hard to see when they are in physical pain let alone emotional pain but that doesn’t mean it isn’t there.

Do Squirrels Eat Their Dead?

Although not cannibalistic, squirrels will eat their dead if:

  • There is food shortage
  • Mating period and a male wants to mate a mother squirrel

But, generally squirrels prefer to eat include small insects, snakes, caterpillars and small animals. These animals rarely eat their dead but this can happen

Do Squirrels Mourn Their Dead?

Squirrels and other social animals grieve, because they develop special bond with someone else. I have seen a mice in my chicken barn snuggle with its babies that have passed on (and bury its father after some time).

Where do Squirrels go When they Die?

When a squirrel die and no predator feeds on it, it slowly decomposes and returns to the earth as manure.

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do squirrels grieve

Can Squirrels Get Depressed?

Squirrels can get depressed when they lose a loved one, they’ve created a bond with.

ALSO SEE: Effective Natural Antibiotics for Squirrels at Home

Do Squirrels Eat Other Squirrels?

Yes, squirrels will occasionally eat other dead squirrels when

  • There is food shortage
  • Mating season has arrived and competition to mate is high. They might kill off some babies so they can mate with their mothers.

What Do Squirrels Do with Their Dead Babies?

Squirrels do the following with their dead babies:]

  • Mourn it
  • Eat it if food is scarce.
  • Kick it out of their nest so it can decompose on the ground.

Why is a Squirrel Dragging Dead Squirrel?

A squirrel pulling the corpse of another squirrel is probably trying to take it somewhere to eat.

common causes of squirrel death

Here are potential causes of squirrel death:

  • Predators
  • Disease
  • Poison
  • Injury
  • Cold
  • Electric shock
  • Fake Out

Author: Howard S. Baldwin

My name is Howard S. Baldwin. I am a work-at-home dad to three lovely girls, Jane + Hannah + Beauty. I have been blogging for the last 3 years. I worked for other Home and Lifetsyle blogs, did hundreds of product reviews and buyers’ guides. Prior to that, I was a staff accountant at a big accounting firm. Needless to say, researching and numbers are my passion. My goal is to be an informative source for any topic that relates to DIY life and homemaking.

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