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  • Nashville Educational Article of the Month - Do squirrels bite?

Do squirrels bite?

Though squirrels can be domesticated and trained not to bite, but their aggressive nature , and the fact that their dental composition is always developing, make it almost impossible for squirrels not to bite both animals and foods. Squirrels are usually the most seen wildlife animals around human habitats, and there are more than 2 species of the animals around the world. Squirrels will normally tolerate various kinds of weather conditions, including the extreme winter and the tropical hot conditions. Most squirrels are fond of running on ground and hopping around trees .due to the fact that squirrels are mammals, they tend to burrow and stay warm inside the ground especially during the winter.

Squirrels are quite social in nature and they can be interesting to watch. Though there are several species of squirrels, the pygmy squirrel is the smallest while the giant Indian squirrels are known to have some of the longest tooth structures. The fact that squirrels have teeth structure that is always growing, make it difficult for them to control their biting habits. Squirrels may develop teeth as long as 3-6 inches and the teeth keep developing all through the adulthood. Squirrels do have teeth that can piece through flesh of animals and fruits, and for this reason they can easily balance large fruits , seeds and nuts in the their mouth without chewing them.

There are basically three major types of squirrels based on habitats; the ground , flying and tree squirrels. While the ground squirrels burrow for food and hibernation, they have a teeth structure that is quite stronger than tree squirrels. Ground squirrels are mostly found in Europe, Indonesia, Malaysia and some parts of Africa. Though flying squirrels don’t actually fly, but they have a body structure that allows them hop from one tree to another easily. Fly squirrels also have very long and sharp teeth but their teeth are not as sharp as the ground squirrels.

Squirrels do possess 4 large incisors that are always growing throughout their lifetime, and for that reason, squirrels will always chew on things, including tree barks , just to wear down the pressure on their teeth. Aside the 4 main incisor, squirrels are also known to possess 8 molars that they can use in the grinding of foods such as nuts and seeds. Aside the sharp teeth, squirrels do have sharp paws that allow them to pounce on their prey and tear them with ease.

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