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I hope this question fits here, I haven't found another community where it would fit.

Two years ago I was in a hotel in Sri Lanka (south-western coast) and in the hotel gardens there were a lot of squirrels. From what I could find out, they probably were Indian Palm Squirrels, but I don't know for sure. They were striped.

They were very tame and come to the hotel guests, hoping they would get something to eat. You could even touch some of them, so they are probably used to that. We fed them some roasted peanuts (unsalted) and they were pretty happy about it, sometimes they also just took them by themselves =)

My question is, as I am about to visit the same hotel again this year, is it safe to do so? I know that they mainly eat nuts, fruits and insects, but our nuts were purchased in Germany (though propably imported from elsewhere anyway). Is there any danger for the squirrels or is it a terrible idea to feed those wild animals anyway or is it fine to do so, as long we don't cram them?

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  • $\begingroup$ I request improvement by what did you mean by the term "feed". Did you mean "feeding" into their mouth by restraint force? Or you mean just leaving some foods, so just they eat that by themselves? In my village the squirrels ate (now drastically reduced) a lot of paddy grains (they removed the rice husks and ate the content). So i think leaving some paddy/rice grains isn't bad idea. Thats just my guess. $\endgroup$ – Always Confused Jul 18 at 17:26
  • $\begingroup$ @David Its very true we generally shouldn't feed wild animals for multiple reasons; but I think the main hazard of feeding squirrel is to making them vulnerable to killing or entrapment. Otherwise they seem to have some strong contact/ interaction with human, just as comparable to crows & house-sparrows. it seems so many rural kids like to give food to the 3-striped squirrels. Also squirrels like to come on a routine basis on the places where paddy whole grains are packed or stored. $\endgroup$ – Always Confused Jul 18 at 17:47
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    $\begingroup$ @AlwaysConfused: There is no force involved whatsoever =) They eat by themselves, come to humans by themselves. Some eat from the hand and when they have enough they leave. By "as long as we don't cram them" I wanted to indicate that I think it would be a bad idea to just give them too much. $\endgroup$ – Matthias Nicklisch Jul 19 at 7:39

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