Squirrel mating season in Canada may vary from squirrel species to species but generally speaking, squirrels mate twice a year; from December to February and once again from June to August. The gestation period of the average squirrel is 45 days when the animal gives birth to a litter of between 3 and 8 baby squirrels. The younglings are born deaf, blind and naked (without fur).
Multiple males will attempt to mate with a single female. The males attempt to get the female’s attention by loud chattering and slapping tree barks to show dominance. A female is receptive for less than a day and her pheromones can attract males up to a half kilometre away. The female chooses the most dominant male to mate with. It is not uncommon for the female to mate with multiple males.
Since squirrels do not keep a mate for life, the males leave after mating and have nothing more to do with the female or it’s young.
The female takes care of its litter until the babies are old enough to fend for themselves. Weaning occurs at about the seventh to the tenth week. The young squirrels stay with their mother for a few more weeks after weaning to learn survival skills after which they go away to make a life of their own.
Squirrels reach sexual maturity at about 11 months.
How to Get Rid of Squirrels
It is good practice to assume that the squirrels nesting in your house have babies. The baby squirrels cannot care for themselves and will certainly die of starvation or dehydration if separated from their mother. Do not attempt to trap or evict squirrels until you are sure that there are no babies or that the litter is taken care of.
The best way to get rid of squirrels in Toronto is through humane eviction. Hire an expert to install a one-way door which allows the animals to leave the den but blocks them from returning. The expert will inspect for babies and remove them before sealing off the structure with galvanized steel mesh and metal flashing.
Another reason to hire a professional is you need to clean up squirrel feces and urine after a successful eviction. There are many disease-causing organisms living in the animal’s waste and some of these are easily inhaled. The nest also contains pheromones that attract other wildlife. An expert has the correct protective gear and disinfecting chemicals to sanitize the area. Additional services may include repairing the damage that the animals caused.
Hire a wildlife removal company that provides a warranty of at least two years for the job.