Illustration of a squirrel

(Illustration by Andrii Oliinyk)

Very hungry squirrels

What do campus squirrels like to snack on?

In the fall the Chicago Maroon published “The Very Hungry Squirrels of UChicago,” a crowd-sourced list of items that campus squirrels have been observed consuming.

In the wild, gray squirrels (Sciurus carolinensis) eat nuts, seeds, berries, tree bark, and fungi. Sadly, the ones in Hyde Park have developed a taste for the same refined carbs that very hungry students enjoy. Bagels, churros, cookies—sugar cookies were the most frequently reported—doughnuts, muffins, pie, and sweet potato fries were all on the list.

There were just two healthy-ish choices: a whole banana—observed and photographed by the article’s author, third-year Alice Cheng—and an apple core, which came with an alarming backstory: “I once had a squirrel jump out of a trash can and literally GRAB MY APPLE CORE FROM MY HAND,” third-year Olinka Regules reported (caps in original).