Which squirrel call is best?

You have probably heard a squawk when you pass by a tree and assumed it was a bird. Chances are, that sound was made by a squirrel. Squirrels are very vocal. Using a squirrel call is arguably the most effective way to get these furry little critters to reveal where they are because they often respond. 

The best squirrel call can mimic a number of squirrel sounds so you can determine which one is right for the situation. The Primos Squirrel Buster, for example, can reproduce five distinct squirrel sounds, making it suitable for a variety of situations.

What to know before you buy a squirrel call

Squirrels communicate using a variety of sounds

If asked to make the sound of a squirrel, most people probably would say, “Squirrels don’t make any sound.” But they do. In fact, when you pay attention, you learn that squirrels are very noisy critters. They squawk, they squeal, they chatter, they bark, and, when in distress, they scream. 

Each of the sounds a squirrel makes communicates something to nearby squirrels. Often, sounds are answered or repeated to spread the message, so to speak.

What is the purpose of a squirrel call?

Like a deer call, a squirrel call is used to get the attention of nearby squirrels. The sound can either be an invitation for friendly chatter or an alert. Either way, the goal of a squirrel call is to coax nearby squirrels into responding, thus revealing their location.

There are two different types of squirrel calls

The sound that squirrels make can be placed into two categories: squawks or barks and squeals or cries. The first type of sound has a slightly aggressive edge to it. If birds barked, this is what they might sound like. The second sound is somewhat smoother, more of a whistle. Some squirrel calls only mimic the barking sounds, some only mimic the squealing sounds, and others can mimic both.

What to look for in a quality squirrel call


You will most likely be bringing your squirrel call with you in the woods in all types of weather. Because of this, you will want a model that is rugged enough to endure being carried about, and tough enough to endure all weather conditions, including snow and rain.


Since squirrels may become wise to your constant mimicking of distress calls, it is important to have a model that can make a wide variety of squirrel sounds. The three primary ones are a bark, chatter and a distress cry.

Realistic sound

Unfortunately, it is possible to purchase a squirrel call that sounds more like a dog’s squeaky toy than a barking squirrel. Since you can’t try out a squirrel call before buying it online, it is important to read reviews and watch any videos posted by users, so you have a fairly good idea of what the squirrel call sounds like before you buy it.

How much you can expect to spend on a squirrel call

A squirrel call will cost anywhere from $10-$25. While it is possible to get an electronic model that has numerous animal calls that can be played at the touch of a button, these items typically do not have a squirrel call included. Be sure to read the entire description before purchasing. An electronic game call may cost anywhere from $100-$150.

Squirrel call FAQ

How do you use a squirrel call?

A. There are several ways you can use a squirrel call to mimic the sounds a squirrel makes. The most common method is to cup one end and squeeze the bellows or slap them against your leg to create a barking sound. Another method involves shaking the item vigorously to replicate the sound of squirrel chatter. Lastly, some models feature a small hole. When you inhale over this hole, it creates a high pitch tone that roughly mimics the sound of a young squirrel in distress. When doing any one of these calls, remember that less is more. If you replicate a sound too often, the squirrels will ignore it.

My squirrel distress call isn’t effective. Is there something I am doing wrong?

A. You can increase the effectiveness of a squirrel distress call by rustling a leafy limb on the ground. This noise mimics the sound a hawk’s wings make as it tries to maintain balance after catching a young squirrel. By judiciously mixing the sound of your squirrel call with the rustling, you can create a more realistic sound that will capture the attention of any nearby adult squirrels.

What’s the best squirrel call to buy?

Top squirrel call

Primos Squirrel Buster

Primos Squirrel Buster

What you need to know: This is an effective squirrel call that is favored by many hunters.

What you’ll love: This versatile, easy-to-use squirrel call effectively reproduces the calls of both gray squirrels and fox squirrels. By using it, you can mimic an alarm bark, squirrel chatter, a squirrel squeal and a distress scream.

What you should consider: Rarely, you may receive an item that doesn’t hold up like it was intended. Give the squirrel call a trial run upon receipt to make sure it is functioning properly.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Top squirrel call for the money

Hunters Specialties Squirrel Call

Hunters Specialties Squirrel Call

What you need to know: This budget option can effectively reproduce all the sounds that higher-priced models do.

What you’ll love: This squirrel call mimics the sounds made by fox squirrels and gray squirrels. It is designed to function in any type of weather, and it can be used with either your hand, your leg or your mouth.

What you should consider: For best results, it is recommended that you thoroughly read the instructions to understand how to make different calls and when to use them.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon

Worth checking out

Haydel's Game Calls Inc. Mr. Squirrel Whistle

Haydel’s Game Calls Inc. Mr. Squirrel Whistle

What you need to know: This specialty item is specifically used to mimic the distress call of a young squirrel to draw other squirrels out of hiding.

What you’ll love: This model is lightweight and easy to transport. It can be worn about your neck so it is always within reach. By inhaling on the device, you can create five pitches that cause nearby squirrels to bark so they can be more easily located. Purchase comes with a money-back guarantee. 

What you should consider: This model works best in conjunction with other sounds of distress. Read the directions before using.

Where to buy: Sold by Amazon


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Allen Foster writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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