Do Snakes Eat Squirrels? (Everything You Need To Know!)

Do Snakes Eat Squirrels

Snakes will eat a variety of animals. However, the specific prey depends on several circumstances, including the snake’s size. Bigger snakes can easily swallow and digest bigger animals. The snake will have to settle for smaller prey if it is smaller.

Do snakes eat squirrels? Snakes love eating squirrels. Typically, snakes are going to eat ground squirrels when they’re only a few months old. When the squirrel gets older, the tables will turn, and it will begin targeting the snake. Snakes regularly eat smaller ground squirrels, though.

Besides eating squirrels, snakes consume other prey, including mice, chipmunks, shrews, lizards, birds, and eggs. If the circumstances are right, the snake can also kill and eat a squirrel. Nevertheless, squirrels will begin killing snakes when it gets older.

Can Snakes Eat Squirrels?

The relationship between snakes and squirrels is unique. While snakes can eat squirrels, the situation has to be perfect. For instance, a snake will not attack and eat an adult squirrel. It could happen, but the possibility is very low. Instead, there is a higher probability that the squirrel will kill the snake.

Adult squirrels are surprisingly very good at defending themselves against snakes. They are agile enough to kill snakes. Furthermore, the snake’s prey is not going to harm the squirrel. In adulthood, squirrels have protein in their blood that protects them from snake venom.

As a result, it is uncommon for snakes to kill adult squirrels. It could happen, but the most likely scenario is that the squirrel will kill the snake—squirrels like killing snakes for numerous reasons.

Why Do Squirrels Kill Snakes?

You’re likely curious to know why a squirrel would want to kill a snake. Squirrels sometimes attack and kill rattlesnakes. When doing so, they’re going to hunt the snake for food. A rattlesnake will provide the squirrel with ample food so they don’t have to hunt again immediately.

Plus, the squirrel will use the old skins to coat itself in the snake’s scent. Squirrels can quickly kill rattlesnakes, as is evident in this video. After chewing on the snake’s skin, the squirrel will lick its fur. Once it has done this, the squirrel will have the same scent.

Squirrels use this as a defense mechanism and to lure rattlesnakes. Squirrels are not afraid of snakes because they have the tools needed to kill them regularly.

How Do Squirrels Kill Snakes?

Do Snakes Eat Squirrels 1

Believe it or not, snakes are afraid of squirrels. In particular, ground squirrels in California have discovered a way to intimidate the snakes they encounter. First, it should be noted that rattlesnakes are capable of detecting infrared radiation from heat sources. They can see squirrels from a distance as a result.

However, the squirrel has found a way to use this to its benefit. It’ll start by heating its tail. Then, it will begin shaking its tail aggressively. Once the squirrel has done this, the snake will be wary. It will believe the squirrel is there to harass them. The technique will make the snake defensive while giving the squirrel enough time to strike.

Again, adult squirrels have a unique protein that allows them to survive a snake’s venom. They will bite and kick gravel at the snake to gain the upper hand. Snakes do not want to hunt adult squirrels because they will likely lose the fight.

Instead, the snake is searching for immature squirrels, which are easier prey. It is not known how the squirrel heats its tail. However, it is believed it shuts down warm blood from its core and leaves it in the tail.

Below is the video – Squirrel Vs Snake

You might be interested in Do Snakes Eat Grasshoppers and Crickets?

Squirrel Venom Resistance

Squirrels are unique since they can withstand snake venom. However, this isn’t a universal trait. Squirrels are not going to fight all snake venom. Typically, squirrels have a unique protein in their blood that allows them to survive being exposed to snake venom. Usually, this only works for snakes that they encounter regularly.

Ground squirrels have a protein in their blood that makes them resistant to rattlesnake venom. The only downside is that the ground squirrel likely won’t be able to survive other types of venom. It is only weakly resistant to certain kinds of Pacific rattlesnakes.

Therefore, there is no guarantee that the squirrel will always win the fight. From time to time, a snake may be able to kill an adult squirrel. It depends on the rattlesnake you’re dealing with and other factors.

Which Squirrels Are Prey To Snakes?

Certain squirrels have to be worried about snakes. Unfortunately, snakes are vicious creatures that can indeed kill certain squirrels. Many types of squirrels will fall prey to snakes at some point. However, some tend to be more commonly attacked by snakes than others.

For instance, it is common for the following snakes to be attacked by snakes.

· Tree squirrels

· Eastern grey squirrels

· Fox squirrels

· Ground Squirrels

· Red squirrels

One thing to remember is that snakes are only after young squirrels. As the squirrel ages, it will become more competitive and more likely to win the fight. Therefore, only young squirrels are going to be prone to problems. Usually, snakes attack squirrels that are two months old or younger.

Once the squirrel reaches adulthood, it can fight off the snake without problems. Squirrels are agile and deadly when they need to be.

Summary – Snakes Vs. Squirrels

Many people believe that snakes are always going to kill squirrels. Surprisingly, this isn’t the case. Squirrels tend to be more deadly than snakes. However, it should be noted that snakes will target young, immature squirrels.

Once the squirrel reaches adulthood, the tables will turn, and the snake will become the prey. Snakes often eat young squirrels, so adult squirrels will have to protect them. They often kill snakes to prevent them from attacking their offspring. Do snakes eat squirrels?

Snakes can indeed eat squirrels when they’re young. However, adult squirrels kill snakes by biting and kicking gravel at them a snake. Since they have a unique protein that makes them resistant to rattlesnake venom, they’re not afraid of snakes.



I'm Jennifer Mecham, worked for 7 years in an animal shelter in New York. I created this blog to educate people about these amazing creatures and to show them that reptiles can make great pets. Join me on this journey as we explore the world of reptiles.

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