What is a Group of Squirrels Called?

Squirrels are fascinating creatures that inhabit various environments across the globe. Their agile movements and bushy tails make them a delight to observe. While we often encounter individual squirrels scurrying around, have you ever wondered what a gathering of these small mammals is called? In this article, we’ll explore the world of squirrel society, uncovering their social structures, group names, and fascinating behaviors.

Squirrels, known for their tree-dwelling antics and impressive acrobatics, belong to the family Sciuridae. These small to medium-sized rodents exhibit a wide range of adaptations that enable them to thrive in diverse habitats. One intriguing aspect of squirrel behavior is their tendency to form groups, providing benefits such as enhanced foraging efficiency, protection against predators, and social interaction.

What is a Group of Squirrels?

A group of squirrels refers to a collection of these rodents that come together for various reasons. These groups exhibit specific characteristics that differentiate them from solitary individuals.


A squirrel group consists of multiple individuals sharing a common space and engaging in cooperative behaviors. These gatherings are not random but instead, follow a social structure that helps maintain order within the group.


Squirrel groups exhibit several common characteristics:

  • Cooperation: Members work together to achieve common goals, such as finding food, raising offspring, and defending their territory.
  • Communication: Squirrels use various vocalizations, body postures, and tail movements to convey messages within the group.
  • Hierarchy: A dominant squirrel often emerges within the group, exerting influence over others.
  • Territory: Squirrel groups establish and defend specific areas that provide resources such as food, shelter, and nesting sites.

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Common Group Names

The English language offers several names to describe a group of squirrels. Let’s explore some of the most commonly used terms:

  • Scurry: This term refers to a small group of squirrels actively foraging or moving together.
  • Dray: A dray signifies a larger group of squirrels, often observed in trees or nestled within a particular habitat.
  • Colony: Similar to a dray, a colony denotes a gathering of squirrels, typically found in urban or suburban areas.
  • Drey: A drey represents a nest built by squirrels, usually composed of twigs, leaves, and other materials.

Social Structure of Squirrel Groups

Squirrel groups possess a well-defined social structure that governs their interactions and behaviors.

Family Units

The foundation of squirrel groups lies in family units. A typical family unit consists of a breeding pair and their offspring. These units form the basis for larger group structures.


Squirrels construct nests called dreys, which serve as shelters for resting, rearing young, and protection from harsh weather. Dreys are often built high in trees, providing safety from ground-based predators.


Within a squirrel group, communication is vital in maintaining cohesion and coordinating group activities. Squirrels use vocal calls, tail flicks, and body postures to convey information about potential threats, food availability, and mating readiness.

Group Dynamics and Behaviors

Squirrel groups engage in various behaviors that contribute to their survival and social cohesion.


Group members collaborate during foraging activities, maximizing their chances of locating food sources such as nuts, seeds, fruits, and insects. This cooperative behavior enhances their efficiency and ensures a stable food supply for all group members.


Squirrel groups defend territories against other groups or individuals. By marking boundaries and engaging in vocal and visual displays, they establish ownership and reduce the risk of resource competition.


Groups work collectively to protect themselves from predators. Individuals within the group may sound alarm calls or engage in mobbing behavior, where they surround a predator to intimidate and discourage an attack.

Group Size and Composition

The size and composition of squirrel groups can vary depending on various factors, including habitat and resource availability.

Population Density

The population density of squirrels within a given area influences group sizes. In habitats with abundant resources, larger groups can form. Conversely, smaller groups or solitary individuals may be more common in environments with limited resources.

Gender Distribution

Squirrel groups typically consist of both males and females. However, the gender ratio may vary depending on breeding patterns and resource availability. In some cases, male squirrels may establish territories separate from female groups.

7. Benefits of Group Living

Squirrel groups offer several advantages to their members, contributing to their survival and reproductive success.

Predation Risk Reduction

Being part of a group reduces the risk of predation. With more eyes and ears alert to potential threats, the chances of detecting predators increase, allowing group members to take evasive action or sound alarm calls to warn others.

Resource Sharing

Group members share information about food sources, nesting sites, and other valuable resources. This sharing behavior ensures that all members have access to essential requirements for survival and reproduction.

Reproduction Advantages

Group living can provide reproductive benefits. Females in squirrel groups may have increased protection for their offspring, as other group members contribute to defending the nest and deterring predators.


Do squirrels always live in groups?

Squirrels can live either in groups or as solitary individuals, depending on factors such as habitat, resource availability, and species.

How many squirrels are usually in a group?

The size of squirrel groups can vary widely. Smaller groups may consist of a few individuals, while larger gatherings can have several dozen members.

Can different species of squirrels form groups together?

While some species of squirrels may occasionally interact or share spaces, they typically maintain separate group structures based on their specific social dynamics and ecological requirements.


In conclusion, a group of squirrels, known by various names such as scurry, dray, colony, or drey, represents a gathering of these charming rodents. Squirrel groups exhibit social structures, cooperative behaviors, and communication methods that contribute to their survival and overall well-being. Living in groups offers benefits such as increased foraging efficiency, reduced predation risk, and resource sharing. Observing these fascinating creatures and understanding their group dynamics adds depth to our appreciation of the natural world.

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