Do Squirrels Eat Cicadas: The Interesting Diet of Squirrels

Yes, squirrels dig up cicadas to eat. They are known to be omnivorous and scavengers, meaning they can consume other small creatures, such as cicadas, especially since cicadas are small enough for squirrels to eat. As summer draws close, cicadas will likely become a food source for rodents and other wildlife. 

In addition to squirrels, other animals that may eat cicadas include raccoons, opossums, and even bears! While cicadas are not the most delicious food source, they provide essential nutrients for these animals in the fall. 

Squirrel as a Wildlife That Eats Cicadas

Squirrels are one of the predators of cicadas, and they can easily catch and eat them. It’s unclear what attracts squirrels explicitly to cicadas, but it likely has something to do with their size and shape. 

Chelonia squirrels, the most common type in North America, are especially fond of cicadas during summer. They typically feed on nuts, seeds, insects, and other small animals, but their diet focuses mainly on cicadas. 

This is because cicadas are high in protein and other nutrients, which makes them a perfect food source for these squirrels. n most cases, eating cicadas won’t adversely affect the predator or its population. So, next time you’re out in the woods and see a bunch of cicadas flying around, don’t be surprised if a squirrel is eating one or two!

Cicadas are tiny insects that are often eaten by wildlife. As such, animals like birds, raccoons, bats, and foxes may also consume cicadas during their lifecycle. 

How Squirrels Hunt Cicadas

Squirrels are some of the best hunters; they are proficient in capturing cicadas in one bite, using their muscle power to launch themselves into the air and snatch the insect off the ground. They eat almost everything, including birds, bugs, eggs, and other small animals. 

When Squirrels Eat Cicadas

Cicadas are soft and slightly armored during the reproductive stage when squirrels usually start eating them. They also consume them after adult cicadas have stopped singing to avoid being eaten by predators. 

If you live in an area with a lot of cicada activity, it’s best to keep your windows closed at night so that squirrels don’t get inside. However, squirrels will eat cicadas even if you don’t have cicada activity in your area – they prefer to do so during the reproductive stage.

‘Unusual’ Food Consumed by Squirrels

Like most animals, the adorable little squirrels do have their dietary quirks. 


Squirrels love to eat bread – and they’ll do so in abundance during winter. Not only is bread a great source of sustenance for them, but it’s also a fun snack. 

So, if you see a squirrel rummaging through your bread bin, keep it away from them and out of their reach! Also, store your bread in an airtight container to avoid spoilage and rodent damage.


One of the delicacies that squirrels eat is peanuts. If you have peanuts in your backyard, lock them up, so they don’t get raided by the furry little rodents.


Raisins are a good source of energy for squirrels during wintertime. Raisins are a good source of nutrition for squirrels as they contain a high amount of dried fruit which is high in energy. They do so to get the seeds inside the raisin where they can access them more accessible. 

Squirrels aren’t the only animals that eat raisins – other creatures such as birds and bats consume them too! 

Squirrels’ Diet by Type

Western Palm Squirrels’ Diet

Western Palm Squirrels are known for keeping gardens pest-free, and their diet consists mainly of cicadas during the summer months. On the other hand, Eastern Palm Squirrels are more adept at eating fruits, nuts, and seeds and tend to eat smaller mammals such as shrews and mice when available.

Black Flying Squirrels’ Diet

Black flying squirrels are active during the day and will eat various small animals, insects, fruits, and vegetables. During the early spring, they will focus on eating insects. Depending on the time of year, they’ll consume different types of food, such as nuts, in fall or winter.

California Ground Squirrels’ Diet

California ground squirrels are cute little rodents that feed on nuts, seeds, and fruits but will consume insects and other small animals if they can get them. 

It is essential to ensure your food is placed where the squirrels can’t get to it quickly – such as on top of a tree or fence. The best time to feed them is during the fall when they are looking for food items to store for the winter months.

Where Do Squirrels Fit in the Animal Food Chain?

Squirrels are a type of rodent that is in the omnivore food chain. This means that they can eat both plants and animals. They are predators that eat small animals, such as insects and other rodents. 

Cicadas are an insect that is common on trees throughout the US. Though squirrels may eat cicadas as part of their diet, this process helps keep animal populations under control in a healthy way. This is because cicadas are big enough to threaten other animals but not big enough to be a full-blown meal.