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Do Squirrels Eat Snails & Slugs? (Quick Answers)

It’s a matter of some controversy, that’s for sure. Some say squirrels will eat anything, while others believe they’re vegetarians.

According to the consensus, squirrels eat any kind of prey they can catch. But do they eat everything?

Do Squirrels Eat Snails & Slugs?

Due to squirrels’ scavenging habits, they are likely to consume small animals such as snails and slugs. Although this may not be their optimal diet, it is likely to be sufficient. The best way to prevent a squirrel from eating your snails or slugs is to ensure that they cannot reach them.

Many people recommend keeping snails and slugs out of gardens to keep squirrels away. Others suggest using an animal repellent or yelling at squirrels. In the end, it is up to you to choose the best course of action.

Squirrels have different food habits. Here are the most common squirrels and their habits regarding snails and slugs.

Grey squirrels:

Grey squirrels are likely to eat a wide variety of prey because of their long lifespan. However, slugs and snails are relatively small and the species is doing quite well. Snails and slugs are no problem for grey squirrels.

Ground squirrels:

Ground squirrels indeed eat snails and slugs. In addition to their easy availability, they are in high demand by ground squirrels due to their high protein and vitamin content.

Is snails and slugs good for squirrels to eat?

Slugs and snails are generally good food sources for squirrels since they contain high levels of protein and other essential nutrients. You must, however, take into account the local environment and consult with a professional.

Slugs and snails are generally beneficial to squirrels in that they remove destructive pests from the area. In addition to eating a large number of harmful insects, slugs and snails keep the area clean and pest-free.

3 reasons why squirrels will eat snails and slugs

Squirrels eat very differently than other rodents. Occasionally, they become vegetarians, sometimes not. However, you should let them eat snails and slugs if they enjoy it. The following are three reasons why squirrels can eat snails and slugs.

Slugs and snails are an easy source of food for squirrels:

An area with a large population of slugs and snails usually feeds on a wide range of insects. This means that squirrels can eat them without having to worry about leaving any behind.

While they may not be the most delicious food item out there, slugs and snails still contain valuable nutrients that can help to sustain a squirrel’s health.

Slugs and snails contain high levels of protein and other essential nutrients:

Slugs and snails contain high levels of protein and vitamin B12, which squirrels cannot produce themselves. Slugs and snails are nutritious snacks for squirrels, so they will eat them if they find them tasty.

Consult with a professional before allowing your squirrel to consume large numbers of these creatures, as excessive consumption can lead to health problems.

Slugs and snails can help to rid the area of destructive pests:

The squirrel is an excellent digger and will eat anything that it digs up. It’s essential to plant a variety of plants so as not to incite their desire for food with the easy access to food one has on one’s property.

How to stop squirrels from eating snails and slugs?

If you want squirrels to stop eating snails and slugs, there are a few ways you can do it. Here are a few suggestions.

Provide them with more food sources:

You can either plant fruit and vegetables that are more desirable to them, or you can use deterrents like bells or repellants to deter them.

Seal your snails and slugs:

If you think that your pet has discovered holes, you can line a cat or dog food dish over them. Be sure to fill the hole with soil. This will ensure the complete extermination of these creatures.  Verify that there is no more than one space.

At the same time, eliminate a few hiding places at any given time to spread out their feeding spots.

Use bait to terminate the snails and slugs:

It is also possible to use bait to remove these creatures. You need to place this bait in areas where you think they frequent, such as rabbit warrens, or under rocks or logs where you think they frequent.

Give squirrels enough food:

You can try to give your squirrels more food of their choice.  You can also add repellents to taste and smell.

Add any type of deterrent that you think will make the pest go away, like peppermint oil or citronella candles near an area where you do not want them to frequent under protective undertakings. It will help them stop eating snails and slugs.

Search for a professional:

Please contact us if these measures do not work or if your squirrel displays excessive behavior, such as eating large quantities of snails and slugs. 

An expert can help if these measures do not work. An expert can help diagnose the problem and provide treatments.

What do wild squirrels eat?

Nuts, seeds, and fruits make up most of a squirrel’s diet. They also eat insects and bird eggs. Here are some foods that squirrels like to eat.

Chews and acorns:

Acorns and chews are the main foods of wild squirrels. Squirrels thrive on acorns as a food source. The acorn, however, contains little nutritional value, as well as a large amount of tannin.

In this way, they can absorb the chemical in their stomach to terminate the insects that have become trapped inside.


Squirrels eat fruits as well. Mulberries, figs, and apples are the most popular fruits squirrels consume. Other fruits, such as raspberries, blackberries, and crabapples, can still be eaten by wild squirrels, but in smaller amounts.


Tree nuts and other forage species are consumed by them. When it comes to finding food, wild squirrels are known to visit many different places, including flowers (e.g., Campion), weeds, leaves on tree branches, or even cats’ tuna scraps and gumballs.


Squirrels also eat berries. Besides red and black raspberries, they also consume strawberries, raspberry cane juice, bilberries, and currants.


Squirrels consume insects as well. A majority of their diet consists of caterpillars, grasshoppers, and bugs.

he most common food they consume is Coleoptera, Lepidopteran pupae, Odonata Dragonflies, etc. Despite this, they have been known to pounce on larger animals when the opportunity arises.

Bird eggs:

During nesting season, squirrels eat bird nests. There is, however, a very low probability of a wild animal eating another animal’s eggs or nestlings.

However, if it finds them in some way then they would likely attempt to take advantage of this “abundance” and gather potential food sources from such areas.

Final Thought

The squirrels are scavengers; they eat slugs and snails as a source of food. Ultimately, it is difficult to be certain what the squirrels are eating since they may be eating different things depending on their dietary requirements. However, eating snails and slugs is not harmful to them.