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Why Do Squirrels Chase Each Other?
A Game of Ring Around the Roses?
Have you ever wondered “why do squirrels chase each other?” Squirrels are fun and playful little creatures that you will always find chasing and running. Squirrels are mammals with advanced brains, vast behaviors, and specific social dominance. Approximately 200 species of squirrels live on all continents, except for Antarctica and Australia. Territorial pressure results in different behaviors from different kinds of species.
The way squirrel reacts in any situation depends on the type of food available, the habitat, predators, soil conditions, and distribution patterns of the territory. Sometimes, you might even get entertained by watching the squirrels do crazy stuff out in the yard. It can be fun to watch a group of squirrels run around a tree or make their way up and down a tree trunk without stopping for a break.
You’ll be surprised to know about the various reasons behind squirrels chasing each other. If you take some time and listen to their sound, considering the season of the year, you can easily determine the reason behind the chase.
Do Squirrels Play?
Yes, squirrels do play. Young squirrels chase each other in the form of playing with each other. Younger squirrels have loads of energy and playful nature, so they chase. Squirrels have a lovely time with other squirrels by chasing them playfully.
Usually, juvenile squirrels typically play with each other, but sometimes they even play around by pretending to fight. This behavior is very common in puppies, similar to what the squirrels do.
It is said that the behavior of playing squirrels serves a certain purpose. For survival, squirrels need to develop strength and proper integration, so playing with other squirrels helps them to teach these things to each. Squirrels must know how to chase each other as they might need it to establish dominance or solve territorial quarrels in the future.
Do Squirrels Fight?
Adult squirrels fight only for territories and their mating partners. They might face territorial disputes, so to establish dominance, squirrels chase each other, which may seem like fighting. Squirrels that feed on other squirrels’ areas are often a challenge to the dominant squirrel living in that area. Flying squirrels are the most territorial species.
Usually, a male squirrel marks his region with urine. When a dominant male and sub-dominant male squirrel fight for a region, the dominant squirrel chases, and the sub-dominant squirrel runs.
You may have seen dominant adult squirrels chasing other squirrels aggressively. You will observe a territorial dispute if you see squirrels swirling up and down on a tree. Male squirrels chase other male squirrels to establish dominance over a region.
At last, one squirrel establishes dominance over the other, which is how the territorial matter is solved. The aim is to move the other squirrel away from that region.
It can be entertaining to watch, but do not expect things to shoot up or become too violent as it doesn’t happen. There’s no reason to panic about bloodshed even if you see squirrels chasing and nipping at each other.
Are Squirrels Social?
Not all squirrels are social. Squirrels are mostly territorial. Tree squirrels mostly live solitarily, but ground squirrels are social and mostly live in groups or colonies. Gray squirrels are the most social among all squirrel species.
Do Squirrels Protect Their Food?
For winters, squirrels store lots of food supplies like fruits, acorns, etc. For squirrels, collecting and protecting food is crucial for their survival, and squirrels very brilliantly protect their food reserves. Like the gray squirrels, some squirrels live closely in groups or colonies in a single area.
The female squirrel protects their drey or nests, but the males don’t care who’s inside their territory. This shows female squirrels are more concerned about their food supplies than male squirrels.
Often, food becomes very scarce in the areas where eastern gray squirrels live due to a high number of squirrels living in a small space. This brings lots of competition for existing food in that area.
During such a crisis, gray squirrels fight amongst themselves for their survival. If there is not ample food stored for the winters, these squirrels will die and won’t be able to feed their offspring.
Final Words – Why Do Squirrels Chase Each Other?
Squirrels are adorable animals that are very frequently seen around greenery and trees. All squirrels chase one another as a form of playing with each other. Most squirrels chase other squirrels for territory or to prove their dominance. This squirrel behavior is very common to see. Female squirrels are very protective towards their offspring, but male squirrels are not bothered much about who is in their territory.
Juvenile squirrels chase fellow squirrels because they are very energetic and love to spend time with others. This was an article on ‘why do squirrels chase each other.’