Shooting Squirrels in Backyard: Is it Legal or Illegal?

Now that you’ve spotted some squirrels in your backyard, what’s next? Before taking out your rifle, you should first confirm whether it’s illegal or legal to shoot squirrels in the garden.

Once you familiarize yourself with the law, you can decide on the best course of action concerning the squirrels.

However, you must first confirm whether you have a squirrel problem. Here are some of the signs that you are in your property.

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  • Piles of nuts such as walnuts or acorns- Squirrels love nuts.

If indeed, you have them on your property, you will see piles of nuts coverings on various locations in your yard.

  • Droppings. If there is a squirrel in your yard, you will see the squirrel’s feces.
  • Destruction of Plants. Squirrels tend to destroy everything they come across, particularly plants and flowers. So if you woke up one morning and spotted the damage of your garden plants, then you have a squirrel problem.
  • Attic noises. Squirrels tend to hide in the attic sometimes, so you may notice some funny sounds that can be annoying.

Law Concerning Squirrels

Squirrels are not an endangered species, which means they can be hunted, but that will depend on the state laws.

Some states and even countries do not permit the killing of squirrels.

The rules about hunting and killing of squirrels are found in DNR or the Department of Conservation.

The DNR is responsible for the management of animal and plant species.

The DNR also lists when and how you can kill the squirrels.

So if you want to hunt or kill one, you will need to comply with the DNR rules and regulations.

Before shooting a squirrel in your backyard, you must first purchase a gun and ammunition and get the proper licensing.

Otherwise, you risk facing serious charges and possible imprisonment.

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How to Hunt for Squirrels Using Firearm

Getting a license for a gun and ammunition is not enough. You must also know whether your state allows firing a firearm in an open space.

Other restrictions include the distance between you and the target and the kind of guns and ammunition you can use. You can pick a firearm fire.

The best firearms are those that come with a minimum range; otherwise, you can shoot an unintended target.

Shooting Squirrels in Backyard

How to Shoot a Squirrel in Your Backyard?

Once you follow all the instructions, the next step is learning how to shoot the menace in your backyard.

Follow these tips to learn how to shoot a squirrel.

Know when they come out. Squirrels mostly come out in open space in the early morning and late afternoons.

If you can’t seem to find them, you can easily lure them out with either a bait or tapping quarters together.

Once they come out, give them time to get close to you before shooting. Doing that will increase your chance of killing them.

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You should also shoot and kill squirrels that are sitting down. Also, remember to shoot them when the weather is calm because the presence of wind can make it hard to fire a shot.

Other Ways of Killing a Squirrel other than Shooting

If your state does not allow the killing of a squirrel through the use of a gun, you can still kill them through other means.

Using a Bow and Arrow

You can quickly kill a squirrel by using a different such as a bow and an arrow.

However, you need to know how to use them before hunting a squirrel.

If you have no experience, you can practice in the woods to ensure you perfect your skill.

Bows and arrows are a good option for killing squirrel because they can be re-used.

You also need to choose the right bow; they can be either recurve or the compound bow.

Being in the right place and the right time will increase your chances of trapping a squirrel.

When considering archery, you must abide by the rules and regulations put in place.

Most states restrict the use of bows and arrows near the read and residential areas.

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Live Trapping

Another way of killing a squirrel is by live trapping. Live traps are considered a humane way of catching a squirrel.

Live trapping a squirrel involves catching them then releasing them in a different location.

It is best for those who want to get rid of the animals without harming them.

The first step is selecting a live trap. The trap should be significant to accommodate the animal.

The next step is looking for a proper location for the trap. It should be on the path of the squirrel on a flat surface.

Then it would be best if you chose where you will place the bait in the trap.

It would be best if you set a lure that cannot be easily stolen.

The other step is setting your trap by leaving the door open and following all the instructions in the manual.

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Once you have set the trap, you need to check on it from time to time to see whether it has caught the squirrel.

Eventually, the squirrel will be caught, and the other last step is transferring the squirrel to a different location.

Depending on your state, you are likely to get some of the rules detailing where you should release them.

Failure to abide by the rules will have you on the wrong side of the law.

You should keep in mind that live trapping is a risky method since the animal is no incapacitated.

The squirrel will be angry, so it is best to be extra careful.


There is a specific poison meant for the squirrel that has a particular smell and taste.

However, this poison can also attract pets in your home, which can be dangerous to them.

Children should also be kept away from the area you intend to place the poison

Place the poison on the area where you have spotted the squirrel.

The knowledge of the squirrel’s activity will put you at an advantage, so know their paths and also their hideouts.

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