Rodent exterminator pest control Nashville, TN
Squirrels and Their Stellar Survival Skills
Pest Control
May 15, 2022

The survival skills of rodents are second to none

The survival abilities of squirrels are second to none. Their brains are small but nimble, and while not all escape the game of chicken with oncoming traffic, squirrels and rodents (a type rodent) are able to survive Nashville frigid weather and heat as well as natural predators such as birds, cats, and dogs.

How Squirrels Learn

According to studies, squirrels are quick learners, but only when it’s food-related. They learn by watching other squirrels who steal food.

In addition, squirrels have good memories. Legend has it that squirrels “forget” the locations of their buried nuts, which later grow into trees. But research shows that it’s not so much about their memory and more about burying many more nuts than they actually need. Think of all those extra nuts as an insurance policy for their survival. Because up to 25 percent of their food stores are lost to thieves (AKA other squirrels), they tend to stock up above and beyond what they need to account for this loss. It’s actually quite a smart move.

Squirrels also have very good problem-solving abilities. According to one 2016 published study, a puzzle box was baited with hazelnuts by researchers. Squirrels had to operate a lever to get a hazelnut to fall out. They quickly learned how to work the lever to get to the nuts.

The boxes were reintroduced two years later and those same squirrels remembered the puzzle box and how to work it. It appears they’re even smarter than other animals. It took lions seven months to crack the code and goats 10 months.

Squirrels have some pretty amazing abilities. They can:

  • Smell food buried under one foot of snow.
  • Run in a zigzag pattern to get away from predators.
  • They use something called “deceptive caching” whereby they dig a hole and cover it up without putting food inside. This is done to trick other squirrels who may be watching and try to steal the food.
  • Gray squirrels generate heat through shivering, much like humans. So they tend to huddle together in their dens over the winter.

What a Squirrel Does to Survive

Squirrels get through the winter by staying inside and layering up – again, much like humans do. Their “layers” are body fat and not sweaters, and their “insides” are dens within trees. However, sometimes they get into attics and make their homes there, which is not something you want to see as a homeowner.

Contact PureGuard Pest Control

If rodents (mice & rats) mistakenly set up shop in your Nashville area home, Contact Us right away at 615-502-2855. Our Spring Hill pest control technicians can remove these smart and tricky squirrels from your home so you can live in peace.

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