Pets & Animals

When Is It Safe to Eat Squirrels?

When is it safe to eat squirrel

It may be tempting for hunters to use their guns whenever they see animals roaming around. The same thought might appear when they see squirrels dancing in their backyards. Are you also one of them who badly want to hunt a squirrel for fresh meat? If yes, then you may have to read this piece of information.

The most common question from meat lovers pops out as ‘Is it safe to eat squirrel‘?

It is very safe to eat squirrel meat but only under certain conditions. You have to take care of certain parameters before hunting a squirrel and even before eating them. Those parameters are given below:

Check The Legality of Hunting Squirrel in Your Area

There are many places where hunting squirrels is a crime. You may be fined or even punished for killing a single squirrel. On the other hand, there are some places where hunting a squirrel is legal but only in a few kinds of weather. Even during hunting seasons, hunters may be allowed to kill squirrels if they are creating a nuisance.

While in some regions of your country you may eat squirrels without any hesitation. Even if it is legal to kill squirrels in your area, you may need a certified license for this. This is the rule in California.

The government of Ontario Canada has banned the hunting of squirrels. Therefore, before even thinking to eat a squirrel check the guidelines issued by your local government for the hunting of animals.

Which Type of Squirrel Is Safer to Eat?

There are varieties of squirrels found on earth. Of course, you cannot eat each of them. The gray squirrels found in the USA are safe to eat. These types of squirrels can be found everywhere in the USA, from burying nuts in the park to annoying your pets in the backyard.

Red squirrels are also considered as safest to eat. Puckett squirrels are unfit for consumption because they like to eat fungi from the ground. We are sure you do not want to include fungus in your food chain.

Way Of Hunting Is Also Important

Some places do not allow you to kill a squirrel with an arrow or maybe with a gun. Therefore, the method of hunting also plays an important role. The requirement of the hunting method varies from country to country and from state to state.

If you are living in the USA then you can kill a squirrel with the help of archery. British Columbia also accepts the method of arrows and bows. There are traps in the USA which are specially designed to kill a squirrel. In the UK you can kill them with the help of a shotgun. But in Washington and Hawaii, it is illegal to use such traps.

But if you left the squirrel with a poisonous bullet inside and police find it anyhow, you have to go to jail for this. You may use a trap to kill a red squirrel in the UK.

The Appropriate Time to Eat Squirrels

There is a myth that you cannot eat squirrels in summers. This is wrong. You can consume squirrel meat in any weather of the year. It is said that squirrels trap larvae and Warble inside their skin during the summers. But these impurities do not mix with the meat of the squirrel. They will stay on the skin only.

However, if you boil the meat properly, you may easily distinguish between the impurities and meat. Peel of all the larvae and Warble and enjoy your meal. The only mantra for eating a safe squirrel meal is, first to clean it properly and then cook well.

Are The Backyard Squirrels Safer to Eat?        

This is the most common question from meat lovers. The answer is yes, you can eat the backyard squirrels. But clean and cook it properly.

This is it, for the piece of information. We have covered all the information that you must know before killing a squirrel. Do follow all the rules of hunting in your area, if you don’t want to have a tour of the jail. Cook the meat properly and enjoy a tasty meal.


Cesar Millan
Cesar Millan holds a Master’s in Animal Behavior from Cornell University, dedicating his 11-year career to understanding and improving the human-animal bond. Since joining our website in 2022, Cesar has provided insights into pet care, behavior modification, and animal communication. His background includes roles in animal research and as a professional dog trainer. Cesar’s previous roles included working as a veterinarian and animal behaviorist. Cesar is an avid wildlife photographer in his leisure time and participates in conservation education programs.

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