Squirrel Population Boom Driving You Nuts?

Yards may be overrun with squirrels this fall, thanks to a mild winter.

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Sage Ross (Wikimedia Commons)
Squirrel Population Boom Driving You Nuts?
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Squirrel Population Boom Driving You Nuts?

Many parts of the country this year have seen an eruption in squirrel populations. I couldn't help but notice many, many more of the critters in my yard this fall. Is Connecticut being overrun by squirrels? Every year, we put pumpkins out on our porch and stoop, and most years we get a few nibbles and scratches on our pumpkins. But this year, they have devoured the pumpkins, just leaving the base. What's going on this year?

Joining us by phone is Paul Rego, a wildlife biologist with the state Department of Energy and Environmental Protection.
 
"There are a number of indicators that there really are more squirrels this year," Rego says. "I think the biggest factor is the extremely mild winter we had last year. The squirrels made it through last winter in very good condition."
 
Data is not typically collected on what areas of the state are more affected by squirrels than others. "Their population is secure," Rego adds.