It's a Banner Year for Rodent Roadkill. Here's Why.

Aug 29, 2018

Credit Courtesy of New Hampshire Audubon

If you’ve been noticing a lot of dead squirrels on the roads recently, you’re not alone.

New Hampshire has seen a bumper crop of acorns and pine cones in recent years, a key food source for the animals.

That’s allowed populations to grow, according to Karen Bordeau, a wildlife biologist with the New Hampshire Fish and Game Department.

Now, as we head into fall, the young are starting to disperse in search of new territory and more food, she said. And, in many cases, that means crossing roads.

Jim Frohn, Grafton County Forester with the UNH Extension, said he, too, has been noticing more roadkill recently. And though squirrels may be the most visible, he predicts other rodent populations have increased as well.

That’s good news for their predators, like hawks, owls, fishers and weasels, he said. 

Frohn wrote more about the New Hampshire acorn crop in a recent blogpost for the Extension. You can find that here: https://extension.unh.edu/blog/acorns-acorns-everywhere

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