Do Squirrels Eat Mealworms? All You Need To Know

Did you ever notice a squirrel running behind nothing? Actually, he might be running behind a mealworm. But the question is – Do Squirrels Eat Mealworms? To answer in short – Yes, Squirrels eat mealworms and, in fact, are fairly fond of them.

Today I will discuss with you the various aspect of squirrels eating mealworms. Continue reading to learn more.

Will Squirrels Eat Mealworms?

Squirrels do eat mealworms. Squirrels are omnivores, not herbivores, contrary to popular assumption.

Squirrels eat other animals when necessary, in addition to nuts and plant sources. Squirrels will consume almost anything they can get their hands on, especially if they are hungry.

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Squirrels, for example, frequently hunt smaller mice or take small eggs from nearby birds. A squirrel will eat food as long as obtaining it does not represent a physical hazard. Squirrels are particularly drawn to mealworms because they are high in protein.

When a squirrel is growing, breeding, preparing to give birth, or caring for a baby squirrel, it is likely to eat protein-rich foods such as mealworms. In any case, squirrels will consume any meal that contains protein if it is accessible.

As a result, squirrels frequently take mealworms from bird feeders or places where you feed your pet birds. If you leave mealworms out for your bird to eat, the squirrels in the area are likely to eat at least a portion of the mealworm.

Squirrels love mealworms, both live and dried. Squirrels can get a lot of protein and fat from mealworms, which provide about 17 percent and 14 percent, respectively.

If you feed mealworms to your free-range chickens or other birds on a daily basis, squirrels are likely to keep an eye on you. When given a chance, squirrels have been known to swoop in and steal their part.

Consider getting a squirrel-proof feeder to keep squirrels away from the mealworms you feed your birds. Alternatively, just feed them mealworms when they’re safely cooped up if you have chickens.

About mealworms

Mealworms, Insect, Food, Healthy

The larvae of mealworm beetles are known as mealworms. Tenebrio Molitor is the common name for a beetle species known as a mealworm. Mealworms are highly prevalent in a variety of climates, and they reproduce very quickly.

Mealworms are a high-protein source, and as a result, they’re included in a variety of pet foods. They’re a common pet food for birds and reptiles, and many people use them in bird feeders to feed wild birds in their neighborhood.

You could be concerned about squirrels eating mealworms if you use mealworms to feed birds and leave them out where squirrels can get to them.

Do birds eat mealworms?

Mealworms are consumed by a wide range of creatures, including reptiles, fish, birds, and humans. Mealworms are tan in color, mature to be around 2.5 cm long, and stay in the larvae stage for 12 to 54 days.

Chicken, Chick, Offspring, Chuckle

Despite the fact that they are not slimy, many people dislike handling them because they are wriggly. Mealworms are eaten by bluebirds and by titmice, wrens, robins, woodpeckers, chickadees, cardinals, and nuthatches.

Because mealworms give nutrients, birds eat them the most during the summer while they are raising their nestlings. Mealworms should be consumed in moderation because, while they are a wonderful source of protein, they are difficult to digest for young birds.

Attracting birds with mealworms

Other than birds that consume bird food, mealworms will attract a variety of species to your yard. Because mealworms necessitate additional effort, here are some recommendations for enticing birds using mealworms.

Bird, Robin, Redbreast, Nature, Outdoors

Birdseed is by far the most popular means of feeding birds, but it isn’t the only one. You’ll need to broaden your food options to include suet, berries, dog food, and mealworms if you wish to attract a variety of birds.

Raising or purchasing mealworms is a repulsive technique to attract birds for many people, but it’s also one of the most rewarding.

Because enticing birds with mealworms needs a little more thought and understanding than simply purchasing a conventional bird feeder and filling it with seed, here are some pointers.

Get a mealworm feeder for your birds.

Mealworms will not be distributed by regular house or tube feeders, so you’ll need to invest in a bluebird or platform feeder.

The ideal feeder would include either a platform for birds to perch on while eating or a hole through which birds could enter a fixed cage containing mealworms. Place the feeder near a bluebird home if you’re feeding bluebirds.

Mealworms can be purchased or raised.

Now that you have it, it’s time to load the feeder with mealworms. Purchasing dried mealworms in a pouch is the quickest and most convenient solution.

Mealworms from cans are a better alternative to dried mealworms because they’re softer, moister, and closer to their natural condition.

If you’re feeding bluebirds, keep in mind that they won’t eat dead mealworms since they can tell the difference in color, movement, and texture. Live mealworms can be purchased at most sporting goods stores or bait shops for a low price.

After purchasing mealworms, place them in the refrigerator to keep them inactive and alive for several months.

Mealworms should be placed in the feeder as well as on the ground.

One hundred mealworms once or twice a day are a suitable serving size for birds. Put some mealworms in the feeder and sprinkle some on the ground beneath it. This will attract a bird’s attention, causing it to gravitate toward the mealworms in the feeder.

Maintain a regular schedule and routine.

You must establish a daily routine to train bluebirds to visit your feeder. Place the mealworms at a certain time each day (ideally in the middle of the day) and announce it with a bell or whistle.

Birds will eventually start flocking to your yard every day in search of a healthy dosage of mealworms.

Do gray squirrels eat mealworms? 

Gray squirrels aren’t picky eaters and will eat almost any food that comes their way, but they enjoy vegetables and fruit, as well as mealworms.

Red Squirrel, Rodent, Animal, Squirrel

Mealworms, corn, mushrooms, squash, and broccoli are among the gray squirrel’s favorite foods. Apples, oranges, apricots, and avocados are additional favorites.

Will Squirrels Eat Insects?

Yes, squirrels will eat insects. Because squirrels are omnivores, they eat both plants and animals; they devour insects. On the other hand, squirrels like to eat herbivores largely when the conditions allow.

As a result, squirrels devour insects when their preferred food sources are unavailable. Furthermore, if squirrels have access to a variety of plants but few high-protein seeds and nuts, they may turn to insects when they require a protein boost.

Finally, squirrels may eat insects as a form of entertainment. According to research, juvenile ground squirrels, in particular, play to learn about their surroundings and grow bolder.

Baby squirrels, like human children, will take whatever they can get their hands on and put it in their mouths.

How To Stop Squirrels From Eating Mealworms?

You must be wondering how to avoid squirrels from eating your mealworms now that you know they consume the mealworms you put out for birds in your bird feeder.

Ways to stop squirrels from eating mealworms

Squirrels would not be able to get to the bird feeder.

Squirrels devour the mealworms you put out since they are most likely easily accessible to them. There are several simple ways to keep the bird feeder out of the reach of the squirrels in your garden.

Placing the bird feeder on a pole that the squirrel cannot climb is a simple approach to do so. The rod is rendered inaccessible by fastening, which makes climbing the surface difficult. This is referred to as a baffle.

You may either purchase poles with baffles already attached or purchase the baffle separately and install it to your existing bird feeder pole. One of the prerequisites when making the bird feeder inaccessible to squirrels is that they have a long jumping range.

They have a vertical jump of about four feet and a horizontal jump of about 10 feet. As a result, keep your bird feeder at least 10 feet away from trees and other places where a squirrel could hop on it.

Also, make sure the squirrel can’t jump over the baffle and climb the pole by placing it above four feet from the ground.

Use a Bird Feeder that is Squirrel-Proof.

Many bird feeders are designed to keep squirrels away. Some bird feeders are sensitive to weight, and when a certain amount of weight is placed on the bird feeder, the food supply is cut off. This weight is normally sufficient for birds.

However, it is insufficient for squirrels. Squirrels will be unable to get the food as a result. Squirrels can’t reach some bird feeders because they’re encircled by a cage that’s too small for them to get through.

Some bird feeders contain a battery-operated spinner that scares away any squirrels who land on them.

Use peppers that are hot.

Mixing any type of hot and spicy food into the bird feeder, such as cayenne pepper, chillis, or chili peppers, is one strategy to deter squirrels from eating mealworms from the bird feeder. Capsaicin is a substance found in peppers.

Capsaicin is found in the fruits of the Capsicum genus. The chemical can be found in the fruit’s tissue that stores the seeds, interior membranes, and other fleshy portions. Capsaicin is a neuropeptide that sends signals to the brain and nervous system.

Capsaicin, found in peppers of the genus Capsicum, transmits messages to our brain when we eat them. This causes a burning sensation in any region of the body that has come into contact with the Capsaicin. This is what gives peppers and chilies their ‘hot’ or ‘spicy’ flavor.

On the other hand, Capsaicin solely affects mammals; other creatures do not have the same nervous reaction to it. As a result, peppers or strong spices are an effective strategy to keep squirrels away from mealworms while not upsetting the birds who eat them.

The squirrel, like us, will be affected by the pepper’s short-term effects. On the other hand, the squirrel will not be harmed or injured.

The squirrel may not see the problem and return a few more times, but repeated painful sensations from the mealworm will teach the squirrel not to eat from that location in the future.

A Wire Is Used To String A Soda Bottle

Squirrels can be deterred from bird feeders by hanging soda bottles on a wire. Plastic soda bottles strung lengthwise on a steel wire were used to test and certify this procedure.

Make holes in the bottom of a one-liter plastic bottle, then string it lengthwise on a 30-foot heavy galvanized wire that runs through the holes to the open end.

Hang the bottle appliances over the bird feeders, and make sure the feeders are off the ground enough. If squirrels try to get to the feeders, they will slide down the bottling apparatus.

Squirrels should be fed separately.

If squirrels are eating mealworms from the feeder, it’s likely that they’re on the lookout for protein or food in general. There may be a scarcity of alternative foods in the area.

Though it may seem counterproductive, feeding the squirrel separately is a good strategy to deter squirrels from eating mealworms. Squirrels like a wide variety of meals, many of which are also rather inexpensive.

Sunflower seeds and corn are two inexpensive foods that squirrels enjoy. Put out a large number of different meals in an area where the squirrel may easily obtain them to deter the squirrel from eating mealworms.

The squirrel is unlikely to hunt for mealworms from the bird feeder if it can find adequate food in an easily accessible location. This method only works if the mealworms are more difficult for the squirrel to access.

What Else Do Squirrels Eat in Your Garden Besides Mealworms?

Squirrels fascinate you, don’t they? The majority of people adore these rambunctious creatures and are charmed by their appearance. If squirrels visit your garden, though, you may find them bothersome and fail to notice the appreciation they receive.

Squirrel, Rodent, Foraging, Wildlife

They can make a mess in our gardens, especially if any edible plants are growing. Squirrels are fond of vegetables, so they find a lot of tasty things to eat in the garden. Fruits, leaves, grasses, garden seedlings, berries, tree buds, and flowers are among their favorite foods.

All of them are plant materials that may be found in practically every garden. The long front incisors of a squirrel can be seen when it opens its mouth or eats food.

Because these teeth never stop growing, squirrels must bite on anything they can get their hands on in order to keep them in good form.

Click here to know if squirrels eat mice

Do squirrels eat mealworms?

Squirrels are true omnivores with a wide variety of preferred meals, including mealworms. Mealworms are something they eat. Mealworms have a fantastic amino acid, vitamin, and high-quality protein balance.

Squirrels are naturally drawn to these delectable treats and can consume them repeatedly. Mealworms have practically the same health advantages as fish, and they are vital to squirrel health.

Growing and breeding squirrels, for example, have a high demand for protein and always eat mealworms.

Do grey squirrels eat dried mealworms?

Squirrel, Cub, Small, Young, Cute

Grey squirrels are opportunistic feeders, and their diversified diet frequently causes problems for gardeners. They eat all kinds of plant material, including buds, catkins, flowers, and stems, and mealworms are their favorite.

They also remove tree bark and bury seeds and nuts in borders and beds by digging several holes.

Why Do Squirrels Eat Insects?

Squirrels eat insects since they are omnivores. If they have access to their preferred foods, though, you’re unlikely to witness them delving into a pile of ants or snatching grubs off the ground. Squirrels prefer to eat apples and other fruits, nuts, seeds, and fungi to insects.

On the other hand, Insects provide a wonderful energy source for squirrels when food is scarce; insects are high in protein, fat, vitamins, and minerals.

In some circumstances, insects give more protein per gram to squirrels than meat. Furthermore, many insects are easily captured by squirrels.

Do squirrels eat live mealworms?

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If live mealworms are available, any squirrel who visits your feeders on a regular basis may test them. Other creatures that consume live mealworms include mice, rats, birds, raccoons, cockroaches, frogs, and snakes, in addition to squirrels.


Mealworms are a flexible food that may be eaten by pets, reptiles, and even humans. Mealworms are inexpensive, readily available, and high in protein.

However, if you feed mealworms to birds in your garden, they may be devoured by squirrels, as squirrels also consume mealworms.

Making the bird feeder inaccessible, utilizing a squirrel-proof bird feeder, mixing spicy foods in the mealworms, and supplying food separately to the squirrels are all simple strategies to dissuade squirrels from eating the mealworms from the bird feeder.

Mealworms are also eaten by rats, mice, snakes, raccoons, frogs, and other creatures.

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What farm animals can eat mealworms?

Birds, chickens, fish, reptiles, rats, and other pet animals eat mealworms as feeder insects. It makes sense to start raising your own mealworms if you have many pets that eat them.

What wild birds eat dried mealworms?

Chickadees, cardinals, nuthatches, woodpeckers, and the occasional bluebird or American Robin are some of the birds that consume dried mealworms. Mealworms that have been dried do not spoil.

How do you feed live mealworms to wild birds?

Place mealworms in a bird feeder that is conspicuous and accessible. Put the feeder near where you’ve seen them feeding or perching if you haven’t seen them at your feeder before (orioles, bluebirds, robins). Common feeder birds readily consume mealworms at their regular feeding station.

Do birds prefer live or dried mealworms?

Of course, live insects are preferable because they are juicier and tastier. The mealworm’s movements will also aid in attracting birds. Live mealworms should be offered in a shallow dish with smooth, straight sides, such as glass or a plastic container, in addition to utilizing a mealworm feeder.

About the author

I'm Gulshan, a passionate pet enthusiast. Dive into my world where I share tips, stories, and snapshots of my animal adventures. Here, pets are more than just animals; they're heartbeats that enrich our lives. Join our journey!