Where can I find Sciurus carolinensis?

The Eastern Grey Squirrel is native to the eastern and Midwestern United States, and also to the southern portions of Canada’s eastern provinces. However, there are many locations where the species has been introduced, and it seems to have thrived in these new habitats. It has been introduced throughout  the western United States including California, Oregon, and Washington. Additionally, it has also been introduced in Ireland, Africa, and England where it has become an invasive species.

Note: Range map only shows native distribution of species, not where it has been introduced.

Where there are snacks, the squirrels will follow….

Squirrels prefer to live in environments where there is plenty of food. In nature, an area with a variety seed bearing plants, new growth, and dense woodland is ideal. While oak and hickory forests are desired, the eastern grey squirrel is also found in coniferous forests. Squirrels spend most of their time in trees. Most commonly, squirrels live in white oak, American Beech, American Elm, Red Maple, and Sweetgum, but they can be found in variety of other species o also. The reason for this is that squirrels build their nest, called a drey,  in high tree branches or in the hollowed out portions of trees. They are made primarily of leaves and branches, but are often insulated with feathers, fur, or other soft materials they can get their paws on. These dens are built specifically for the care of their young, and for the storage of food. The nest keeps the baby squirrels protected while the adults go searching for food. In the winter months the squirrels also live in these nests in order to keep warm, since they do not hibernate.

 It is very common to find squirrels thriving in urban environments. Many squirrel populations survive in city parks and people’s yards in the suburbs. Squirrels become a nuisance for many people. They often steal food from people’s gardens and raid bird feeders. If there is not significant vegetation for the squirrels, they will even begin migrating to people’s attics, garages, and houses.  When you find a squirrel living in your attic or in your walls you will have bigger problems to deal with. Having a squirrel as a roommate is both disturbing and destructive. Overtime, it could cost the homeowner a lot of money. Problems include chewing wood, drywall, tile, and even electrical wires in the house. Having this animal around electrical wires can even be a fire hazard. It is thought that many fires ignited by “unknown causes” can be attributed to rodents, including Sciurus carolinensis,  gnawing on gas lines and electrical wiring. Click here to link to an article and news clip of this. Long story short, if you find an Eastern grey squirrel living in your home it is important to remove it as soon as possible.  

While there are many tips on how to prevent the Eastern Gray squirrel from getting into your home, once there is one living in your home the safest way to remove it is to contact a licensed pest removal company or animal control.  


The Eastern grey squirrel has many adaptations that allow it to thrive successfully in the habits described above. To learn more about this, visit the ADAPTATIONS page.