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Thread: Raw Peanuts

  1. #1

    Default Raw Peanuts

    Hi, I have been feeding the squirrels in my garden for many years (almonds until they became too expensive) and assorted nuts in the shell e.g. walnuts, pecans etc. About a year and a half ago I found a source of raw peanuts (out of the shell) and have been providing those to the squirrels (and birds). There have been no issues and they all seem in good health but I read that raw peanuts are not good for them and can cause disease etc. So now I am concerned that I have somehow harmed them. If someone could provide some advice/input or point me in the right direction that would be great. Thanks

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2010
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    N. America
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    7,464

    Default Re: Raw Peanuts

    Hi and welcome!
    well, peanuts...

    technically, peanuts are not good:1) very often raw peanuts (that aren't really nuts, but legumes) have invisible mold that is harmful to squirrels; 2) besides mold, peanuts contain certain toxins that cause liver damage (not only in animals, but humans, too).
    So, to feed or not to feed?...

    ... some people think that it's ok for wild squirrels because these peanuts do not constitute the foundation of the wild squirrel 'food pyramid', it is their dessert/snack kind of thing;
    ...however, during the times of scarcity (e.g., winter, early spring) wild squirrels may rely more heavily on feeders/food from people, so it might be more than just 'dessert' for them.
    ...some people refrain from giving them peanuts altogether and use other foods; others do give them, but sparingly, combining with other things.

    If you do decide to give them peanuts, choose roasted. Roasting supposedly (I am saying "supposedly" because it depends on the temp. of the roasting process) destroys mold, as well as some of the liver-damaging toxins. However, if roasting can destroy mold, it cannot completely destroy those toxins (that's why even for human consumption they are suggested in moderation). So, if it is peanuts - let them be roasted.

    But it doesn't have to be peanuts only. Although, wild squirrels can be more picky about the food than the rehabs, they can still eat some variety: apples (cut in slices), avocados (no skins, no pits - very toxic to squirrels), grapes etc. You could experiment and see what your wilds will 'agree' to eat. During winter/early spring they are not as picky. You can check out The Nutrition section and see what's good to give to them.

    Some people become very creative with what they give their wild squirrels.
    Just it's better either to limit or to eliminate corn and sunflower seeds.

    Don't know where in Canada you are, but if you are in GTA, look for jonvince food stores - they often have a variety of nuts on sale, both shelled and in-shell.

    I am sure other people will share their experience here pretty soon.
    Hope, this helps a bit.

    PS if you have an inexpensive source of raw peanuts, you could roast them yourself either in the oven (just don't remember the temp, but maybe someone will know. otherwise - just estimate/experiment), or stove-top. But for stove-top you will need to be constantly stirring them so that they don't burn (no oil or anything like that, that's why important to stir). It may sound more complicated than it actually is.Pretty easy.

  3. #3
    mugzeezma Guest

    Default Re: Raw Peanuts

    Quote Originally Posted by astra
    Hi and welcome!
    well, peanuts...

    technically, peanuts are not good:1) very often raw peanuts (that aren't really nuts, but legumes) have invisible mold that is harmful to squirrels; 2) besides mold, peanuts contain certain toxins that cause liver damage (not only in animals, but humans, too).
    So, to feed or not to feed?...

    ... some people think that it's ok for wild squirrels because these peanuts do not constitute the foundation of the wild squirrel 'food pyramid', it is their dessert/snack kind of thing;
    ...however, during the times of scarcity (e.g., winter, early spring) wild squirrels may rely more heavily on feeders/food from people, so it might be more than just 'dessert' for them.
    ...some people refrain from giving them peanuts altogether and use other foods; others do give them, but sparingly, combining with other things.

    If you do decide to give them peanuts, choose roasted. Roasting supposedly (I am saying "supposedly" because it depends on the temp. of the roasting process) destroys mold, as well as some of the liver-damaging toxins. However, if roasting can destroy mold, it cannot completely destroy those toxins (that's why even for human consumption they are suggested in moderation). So, if it is peanuts - let them be roasted.

    But it doesn't have to be peanuts only. Although, wild squirrels can be more picky about the food than the rehabs, they can still eat some variety: apples (cut in slices), avocados (no skins, no pits - very toxic to squirrels), grapes etc. You could experiment and see what your wilds will 'agree' to eat. During winter/early spring they are not as picky. You can check out The Nutrition section and see what's good to give to them.

    Some people become very creative with what they give their wild squirrels.
    Just it's better either to limit or to eliminate corn and sunflower seeds.

    Don't know where in Canada you are, but if you are in GTA, look for jonvince food stores - they often have a variety of nuts on sale, both shelled and in-shell.

    I am sure other people will share their experience here pretty soon.
    Hope, this helps a bit.
    Always ROASTED nuts.
    Aflatoxins from a mold you may or may not see...found in corn, peanuts, and other food stuffs (even acorns) can kill

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Planet Earth
    Posts
    3,072

    Default Re: Raw Peanuts

    Quote Originally Posted by bosssquirrel
    Hi, I have been feeding the squirrels in my garden for many years (almonds until they became too expensive) and assorted nuts in the shell e.g. walnuts, pecans etc. About a year and a half ago I found a source of raw peanuts (out of the shell) and have been providing those to the squirrels (and birds). There have been no issues and they all seem in good health but I read that raw peanuts are not good for them and can cause disease etc. So now I am concerned that I have somehow harmed them. If someone could provide some advice/input or point me in the right direction that would be great. Thanks
    PLEASE dont feed raw peanuts to anything. My beautiful Eclectus parrot recently died because she was given 3 raw peanuts...3!! Thats it...and it was enough to kill her in less than 48 hrs. Pardon if I sound short...I would just hate to see anyone go through what my husband and I are still going through with the loss of a family member. Raw peanuts KILL!!
    Life is as dear to a mute creature as it is to man. Just as one wants happiness and fears pain, just as one wants to live and not die, so do other creatures.

    His Holiness The Dalai Lama


    The fate of animals is of greater importance to me than the fear of appearing ridiculous; it is indissolubly connected with the fate of men.

    Émile Zola

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