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Thread: 6month old squirrel need help to release

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2020
    Thanked: 0

    Question 6month old squirrel need help to release

    My boyfriend found a baby squirrel who was orphaned so he brought her home we bottle fed her and we were planning on releasing her but my boyfriend keeps saying she won't survive .I know she will survive but I am not sure how to go about getting her ready to be released.can someone help me

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2015
    East coast of Florida
    Thanked: 10722

    Default Re: 6month old squirrel need help to release

    The two links I posted will help you understand the release process as well as the enclosure needed for release. Of course many folks don’t have a special release cage, they just use one that they may have been using inside.

    I see you’re in Colorado. It is too late in the year for you to release your girl now. She should be over wintered and released in the spring when the leaves are back on the trees. This will give her the best chance of survival. Squirrels always do better when they are older when released, especially if they’re a singleton.

    Right now your trees are probably close to bare, she would have no food cache, food is scarce, she may not be adept at making a nest, even if you provide a nest box, it could get taken by another squirrel, and she has no one to snuggle with to stay warm through the winter. Moms usually keep their babies with them through winter. All of these things would make her chance of survival lower if you released her now.

    We’d love to see a picture of your sweetie.

  3. 3 TSBers pass along the fuzzy thanks to Mel1959:

    Buddy (10-30-2020), Diggie's Friend (11-02-2020), Kasicana88 (10-31-2020)

  4. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    City Island, Bronx, NY
    Thanked: 15641

    Default Re: 6month old squirrel need help to release

    Hi. Thanks for saving this squirrel!
    Whether your now-teenager squirrel can be released depends upon her nutrition, how she was living while with you, and how you are interacting with her. Squirrels do NOT imprint opon people the way birds do; those of us here on TSB who are wildlife rehabbers release many, many squirrels each year and they do fine. With all due respect, your BF may be wrong.

    So, how did you raise her? (What formula, what other foods etc.) Did she stay in her cage or interact outside the cage with other family members? Do you hand feed her, or keep your distance?

    With squirrels, a "soft release" is always recommended. You will want to acclimate her to the outdoors in a large pre-release enclosure, preferably at least 5' high and 4' wide but most of use larger ones than that. There is a lot here on TSB about release pens, release methods, etc.... you can start here:

    What part of Colorado are you in? If it's about to snow where you are, you can't release her until spring. This will give you plenty of time to build a release pen and prepare for her release by distancing yourself and letting her see and feel the outdoors. We can help -- we love to answer questions. And we really love pix so post those, too!

    NOTE: Mel1959, great minds do think alike!
    Island Rehabber
    NY State Licensed
    Wildlife Rehabilitator

    "Ancora Imparo" (I am still learning)

    If you can't afford the vet,
    You can't afford a pet.

    "Better one day in the trees, than a lifetime in a cage."

    '...and the greatest of these, is Love. '

  5. 3 TSBers pass along the fuzzy thanks to island rehabber:

    Buddy (10-30-2020), Diggie's Friend (11-05-2020), Mel1959 (10-30-2020)

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