Squirrels are often considered cute, in fact, in the 1700’s squirrels were not to be found in city centers. They were introduced to help teach young boys not to be so violent which was common in the early 1800s as many children were orphaned and homeless. This did not have the effect intended and resulted in an excess of squirrels breaking into homes. The result was a new and violent invader that can destroy your home. With the advent of electricity, the situation has gotten much worse. While in the 1800s a squirrel could break into your attic, defecate, have babies and leave. Now there are wires in the attic and squirrels are rodents by species. They have ever-growing incisors that must be trimmed by chewing or they could grow through the squirrel’s face. This is why squirrels seem capable of chewing through anything.
The life cycle of a squirrel is not especially short like it is for mice and rats. They can live for five to ten years in the wild and longer in captivity. They are long-lived and can mate twice a year. The first time is in late spring when the summer starts to set in and the second takes place later in the summer when the fall starts. The squirrels mate for only one day though each squirrel has a different day where they enter heat. This happens twice a year as mentioned so they can only get pregnant on two days out of the year. This makes them very promiscuous as they will mate with every male they can find. Once they are sure they are pregnant they chase whatever male is there away and finds an attic to store food and to give birth. While squirrels tend to remain in the attic only as long as they need it they have babies that are blind and immobile when they are born, like human children they must be cared for. The squirrel mother must care for them for up to two months. That is how long they will stay in your attic and they may end up staying through the entire winter simply because they are already inside. The actual period of gestation from inception to birth is 39 to 44 days.
There are very few ways to get a squirrel out of your attic. They are avoiding males that want to kill their babies so loud music and a strobe light will not be effective. You can spray the mother with a hose and she will not relent. The only way to get them out is with professional or domestic squirrel removal. This requires something called a one-way door that will allow the squirrel to vacate but prevent it from getting back in. They are normally made from rubber-coated galvanized steel mesh and have either a spring forced door that is harder to open or a gravity door that simply falls and lays against the opening. If you have squirrels in your attic you will want to get it out yourself if you have roofing experience or call a licensed and insured professional who can get it out quickly and easily.