Have you found a BABY squirrel?
If the squirrel is an older baby (moves around independently) but is docile or following people or pets (often will cling to pants or shoes) or can be caught, please call us at 713-468-8972.
If the baby is young (eyes are closed and not moving around much) and is uninjured, give the mother squirrel a chance to retrieve it. Place the baby in a shallow box at the base of the tree, closest to where it was found. Make sure the box is off the ground so ants can’t get into it (set it on a chair or nail it to the tree). If it is chilly outside or if the squirrel is cold to the touch or not fully furred, it will need a heat source such as a hot water bottle, a rice sock, or a chemical hand warmer. Place a piece of soft fabric, such as fleece, between the animal and the heat source, and check to make sure both stay warm but not hot. Once you have placed the box near the tree, play the following audio of a Baby Squirrel Cry from your phone to get the mother's attention. You can loop the video on the YouTube app by selecting the three dots on the top right corner of the video, and selecting "Loop Video". The phone can be placed next to the container with the baby squirrel. Quickly go back inside (or back very far away if you are not at home) so that you do not scare the mother squirrel and prevent her from coming down to retrieve the baby. Leave the video on loop for 15 minutes. After 15 minutes, remove the phone for 30 minutes. Repeat looping the video for 15 minutes and removing the phone for 30 minutes. Give the mother four hours to retrieve her young. NOTE: Do not attempt to reunite baby squirrels with the mother if they have been caught by a dog or cat. These cases will require medical attention even if there are no wounds visible.
Bring the box inside during nighttime hours and follow the Temporary Care Instructions for All Animals on the previous page. If the mom does not retrieve the squirrel after 4 hours, please call us at 713-468-8972. NOTE: If there are tree trimmers working during the 4 hours, the mother may not retrieve her young while they are there, so please call us.
Have you found an injured ADULT squirrel?
If you have found an injured adult squirrel, please follow the instructions under “Does the animal seem to be ill or injured?" on the previous page.
General Information about Squirrels in the Houston Area
There are 3 species of squirrels in the greater Houston area: the eastern gray squirrel (Sciurus carolinensis), the eastern fox squirrel (Sciurus niger), and the southern flying squirrel (Glaucomys volans). These squirrels' breeding periods occur twice each year, typically in the middle of summer and again near the end of winter. After successful mating occurs, gestation lasts about 44 days. Litters can include up to nine babies, but the average litter includes only two or three. The mean life expectancy for a gray squirrel at birth is 1-2 years; the average life span of an adult is closer to six years. Records for maximum life span are 12 years in the wild. Their maximum life expectancy is typically 12.6 years for females and 8.6 years for males. The life expectancy of flying squirrels in the wild is about six years.