How Does a Squirrel Drink Water?
If you have ever watched a squirrel drinking from a birdbath or pet bowl, you know how quickly it drinks. You may wonder how a squirrel drinks water without falling in, but you won’t have to wonder about it anymore if you understand how squirrels drink water. These creatures simply dip their tongue into the water, curl it back, and pass it to their mouth. This method does not require any special infrastructure, and squirrels can also drink from pet bowls, bird feeders, and other water bodies.
Some people have even been known to feed the squirrels with pet feeders and bottles of water to make them happier. In the wild, they follow birds to water and food, and will drink from these sources when they see them. Squirrels can also drink from a standing water container on the road, or even from plants and fruits. But if you’ve ever watched a squirrel drink from a pet feeder or birdbath, you may wonder how it manages to get water in such a small bowl.
A squirrel can drink dew from a leaf or grass blade. In addition, squirrels can also drink water from mushrooms. The dew that they drink can be a great source of water, and squirrels don’t usually drink much at all. On some days, they may not need as much as a human, but they do drink water. However, if they’ve just eaten a lot of seeds, they may need more water to stay hydrated.
The best way to feed a squirrel is to feed it vegetables that contain the same nutrients as fruits. Fruit juices with natural flavors are also a good source of electrolytes for squirrels. But be careful not to feed them sugary drinks. The latter is bad for their health, so don’t give your squirrels anything that contains sugar. You may even have to give them something else to drink besides water!
Despite their small size, squirrels lose less water than humans. The small sweat glands in their bodies make them lose very little water. They don’t lose much water while pooping or peeing. They also lose water when mating and chasing each other. So, a squirrel doesn’t need to drink water every day – a few glasses per day will be fine. The same goes for the rest of their diet.
In order to grow, baby squirrels are able to consume water from their mother’s milk. The milk is 87% water, so their mother would need more water than what the baby squirrel consumes. Once the baby squirrel is at least 10 weeks of age, they can begin feeding themselves. In fact, after 12 weeks, they can hunt for food and water on their own. During this time, they can also get moisture from the dew of trees, birdbaths, and plants’ roots.
Although we don’t drink the same amounts of water as humans do, squirrels do need a lot of water. In the wild, they need about thirty to sixty ml of water per day, or about 3 tablespoons. This amount increases in the summertime and during lactation. The more water the squirrel drinks, the more likely it is to be active. And when it comes to feeding time, it needs even more water than normal.
Thankfully, there are solutions for this problem. You can use a baby bottle or an eyedropper to administer fluids directly to the squirrel. Remember, though, that the dropper is designed to be held on the squirrel’s tongue and lips and should never be used in a feeding tube. Otherwise, the fluid may be swallowed and cause pneumonia. If you have a squirrel in your home, you should never feed it without proper care.
A squirrel’s diet consists of a variety of foods and beverages. Some of their favorite foods include peanuts and sunflower seeds. Sadly, they are susceptible to a disease called metabolic bone disease (MBD) that weakens the bones of the squirrel. Many people who help rehabilitate wild animals have noticed this illness increasing in recent years. In addition to peanuts, squirrels will also consume milk.
Another way to provide water to a squirrel is to add tea to its diet. True teas contain caffeine, which can raise a squirrel’s blood pressure and lead to cardiac arrest. So, if you can’t give your pet a coffee or tea, consider adding a little fruit juice to the mix. It’s safe for squirrels to consume a tea or coffee in moderation, but it is best to serve it to them at room temperature.
Jessica Watson is a PHD holder from the University of Washington. She studied behavior and interaction between squirrels and has presented her research in several wildlife conferences including TWS Annual Conference in Winnipeg.