Baby squirrels are adorable creatures due to their beautiful appearance and small size, but they grow into bigger adults after several weeks or a few months.
How Big Are Baby Squirrels? Baby squirrels are around 1 to 2.2 inches (2.5 to 5.6 cm) long and weigh around 0.2 to 0.8 ounces (6 to 23 g) at birth. Their body size and weight vary according to diet, genetics, temperature, stress, habitat quality, and health conditions. They can reach 10 to 20 inches in length and 1 to 1.4 pounds weight after becoming an adult.
They can produce 2 liters every year, and each liter contains almost 2 to 4 babies that are pretty small in size and need warmth or quality habitat to grow well.
They require a lot of care and attention due to temporary visual blindness as they have closed eyes until 5 to 6 weeks and depend on food due to lack of teeth.
What is the average size of a baby squirrel?
Adult squirrels are small to medium-sized rodents that can reach almost 10 to 20 inches in length at maximum after developing into adults.
You can find significant variations in the body size of baby squirrels as every species can attain varying body lengths. On average, their body size ranges between 1 to 2.2 inches (2.5 to 5.6 cm).
The grey squirrels are usually bigger as their bodies are almost 2.2 to 2.8 inches (5.6 to 7 cm) long, while the red squirrels are around 1.3 to 2 inches (3.3 to 5 cm) long.
It indicates that these furry animals can reach almost 2.5 to 3 inches in size at maximum if the conditions favor their growth and development.
However, poor habitat conditions and a few other factors can lead to smaller bodies having lengths of approximately 1 to 1.5 inches.
Furthermore, they can gain a few extra inches of body length after growing into an adult after 7 to 10 weeks of birth when their bushy tails extend to their maximum.
What factors affect the size of a baby squirrel?
Many internal and external factors affect the size of a baby squirrel because they need proper nutrition, care, and a stress-free environment to grow and reach their ideal body length.
The genetics of babies play a crucial role in determining their body length because they can only grow up to the size destined for a baby of a particular squirrel species.
Accordingly, their bodies can reach the maximum length inherited by their parents through genes. Some external factors like food availability also matter as good nutrition favors longer bodies.
A healthy squirrel baby can also grow well and attain a longer body than a diseased or sick one.
External stresses, like predator attacks, matter because they cannot thrive under stressful conditions when there is always a risk of attack.
The habitat quality needs to be good to avoid the risk of infection because these tiny and hairless pups are prone to infections due to lower immunity.
In addition, temperature also affects their growth pattern as newborn babies require almost 98 to 100 degrees Fahrenheit, while it can be around 95 to 98 degrees Fahrenheit after 4 to 5 weeks.
Any fluctuations in the temperature can affect their growth rate and hinder their development cycle. So, you have to provide proper warmth to babies if you care for them at home.
Therefore, all these conditions play an essential role in their body height and weight, and a long squirrel shows that it received proper conditions to attain such height.
What does a baby squirrel look like?
A baby squirrel appears pretty small at birth or almost equal to the first joint of an index finger. It appears pink in color with hairless body for nearly 4 to 5 days.
Soft fur or hair begins to appear on its body around different parts like the nose and mouth after some time. Moreover, the eyes of newborn babies remain closed and open after a few days.
They have no fur and whiskers at birth and gain a dense mass of soft hair after a few weeks. Their tails and legs also develop after some time and are undeveloped at the birth stage.
In the same way, their heads appear larger than the rest of their bodies because they have shorter tails and their bodies lack heavy fur.
Their bodies appear in different colors according to the fur color of a particular species after 7 to 8 days of birth. You can see prominent ears and nails during the second week of growth.
Moreover, their teeth emerge from tiny mouths after 20 to 30 days, and the body gets covered in dense hair except for the lower legs and under tails.
These babies or pups depend entirely on their mother for food and water because they cannot open their eyes before 5 to 6 weeks and lack abilities to hunt for food.
In addition, it begins to crawl during the fifth week of development but avoids climbing and sitting within the nest for long hours.
Furthermore, depending on species and environmental conditions, it can reach maximum body length and weight after 7 to 10 weeks.
How heavy are baby squirrels?
Baby squirrels or pups are light in weight due to their smaller body size, and every type of squirrel gives birth to babies with varying body weights.
On average, their body weight ranges between 0.2 to 0.6 ounces (5 to 17g) at birth. However, some larger species can reach around 0.8 to 1 ounce (23 to 28g).
The newborns are around 0.2 to 0.6 ounces, but their weight doubles when they complete one week of their growth period and reach almost 0.6 to 1.7 ounces.
A 2-week-old baby weighs around 1.4 to 2.5 ounces, while it can gain 2 to 4 ounces of weight after becoming 3 weeks old.
In the same way, 4-week-old pups can reach approximately 4.5 to 6.5 ounces (128 to 184g) of body weight.
However, the adults can reach around 1 to 1.4 pounds or 16 to 22 ounces after almost 9 months when they are grown to full size.
What do baby squirrels eat?
Baby squirrel’s diet only relies on mother’s milk for a few weeks because it is highly nutritious and contains essential vitamins and minerals. Never use cow milk for feeding their babies.
Moreover, they need easy-to-digest food for some time because their digestive system cannot deal with complex carbohydrates.
In addition, they cannot digest solid food right after birth and suffer from stomach problems if they try to eat complex food particles.
Similarly, they do not have teeth to chew the hard particles. They switch from liquid to solid food types and start nibbling on solid food after 4 to 5 weeks when their teeth emerge.
Furthermore, they are omnivorous animals and feed on various vegetables, fruits, nuts, seeds, and meat that help maintain a balanced diet. They obtain water from food and stay hydrated.
However, salty foods, fruit pits, starch-rich foods, and pine nuts are not considered safe for these animals with sensitive stomachs as they cannot deal with excessive salt and starch.