Disclaimer: Always check your local laws before gathering wildlife for consumption. Trapping, hunting, and/or killing of certain animals may not be permitted in all jurisdictions. is not responsible for any legal repercussions resulting from your use of this website.

Squirrel traps, and animal traps in general come in two kinds: kill traps and live traps.

Kill traps are designed to kill the animal as soon as, or shortly after, the animal triggers the trap. These include mousetraps, body-grip traps, and electrocution traps. We do not recommend kill traps for catching squirrels to eat.

The best squirrel trap

Live traps are designed to restrict the animal’s movement once the animal enters the trap, but do not kill the animal. For squirrels, this category includes traps with a trip plate as well as hole traps. However, there is only one trap that I recommend and that is the appropriately named Squirrelinator!

In the US, you can buy this trap on Amazon for ~$70, shipping included.

Rugged Ranch Products also sells the Squirrelinator for $40, but not including shipping.

Here’s a clip of the Squirrelinator in action:

Why use the Squirrelinator?

  • Multiple squirrels can enter the trap, a feature unique to the Squirrelinator
  • Squirrels can enter through one of two entrances
  • It contains no trip plates, which many urban squirrels are surprisingly smart about avoiding. Squirrels can walk in but cannot exit the trap.
  • Securely designed, this trap has multiple latches to keep squirrels from escaping and can even be used to transport squirrels
  • Squirrels can be removed from the trap alive
  • Used correctly, will not trap other animals such as racoons, birds, or mice.

How to use the Squirrelinator

Like any trap, the Squirrelinator requires bait. The best bait for squirrels is unshelled, unsalted peanuts which you can find at your local grocery store. Combining the peanuts with peanut butter will create an irresistible temptation for the squirrels!

  1. Place the Squirrelinator on a flat, grassy surface.
  2. Unsecure the latches holding the entrance doors.
  3. Unsecure the latches holding down the top door. Open the top door
  4. Place bait slightly left or right of the center of the trap. A heaping handful of peanuts is usually sufficient.
  5. For “extra strength”, dip some peanuts in peanut butter and place inside the trap
  6. Close and secure the top door
  7. Scatter some peanuts around both trap entrances
  8. Wait!

While you are waiting, why not buy a trail camera or two to catch the trapping action?

Once you’ve become comfortable with the process, check out our pro baiting tips to maximize your squirrel catch rate!

I caught one, now what?

The next step is to assess the squirrel’s condition. Does the animal look diseased? Is it behaving abnormally?

If you believe the animal is infected or in poor health, you should avoid eating it. However, if the animal is suffering, you should consider humanely dispatching it.

Remember to never touch a squirrel with your bare hands. Always wear animal handling gloves!

If the squirrel is fit for consumption, the next step is to dispatch it.