Often as we walk about our yards, we find partially eaten mushrooms. Invariably we assume gray squirrels have devoured them. Although this is often the case, the truth of the matter is a wide range of backyard wildlife visitors may have dined on what most of us would consider an unusual wildlife food.
In addition to the gray squirrel, the larger fox squirrel also feeds on mushrooms. Among the other mammals you might spot eating mushrooms in your backyard are eastern chipmunks, armadillos, eastern cottontails, opossums, wood rats, white-footed mice, raccoons, striped skunks, and of course white-tailed deer.
Even birds such as brown thrashers, cardinals, and crows will dine on mushrooms. Some birds, like blue jays and American robins, will actually pluck out insects and other invertebrates hidden inside mushrooms.
Who would have thought mushrooms provide food to so many of our backyard wildlife neighbors?