A squirrel enjoying a snack in Geneva.
A squirrel enjoying a snack in Geneva.

Have You Noticed Something Has Been Eating Your Halloween Pumpkin?

Kane County Connects Staff 10/25/2022 4:00PM

According to a local wildlife expert, squirrels are the number one pumpkin-munchers around here, and usually start by gnawing through the skin of the pumpkin which exposes the flesh underneath that attracts other critters.

Pam Otto, Outreach Ambassador for the St. Charles Park District, says deer also love pumpkins along with opossums and raccoons. She says crows will feed on pumpkins too and, if it still has its ‘guts,’ many other birds will feed on the seeds.

Animals will eat every part of a pumpkin except the stem.
Eaten Pumpkin.jpg
Otto suggests if you have a prize pumpkin you want to keep out on display from now until long after Halloween has come and gone, hot sauce smeared or sprayed on the pumpkin will work to keep mammals away, at least until rain washes it off. Can you leave your used pumpkin out for animals to eat as a way to recycle it? Otto says as long as it doesn’t have anything harmful on it, like toxic paint, glitter, etc., the pumpkin will be a welcome treat.

But if someone is already having issues with any of the above mammals, leaving a pumpkin out for them isn’t such a great idea as they tend to keep coming back looking for more. 

If you are looking for a place to recycle a pumpkin, St. Charles is hosting a pumpkin composting event 9am-noon on Saturday Nov. 5 at the Public Works facility, 1405 S 7th Ave, St. Charles, IL 60174. 

Tags: Featured Animals