Rodents and all other animals have a specific mating season, breeding seasons, and gestation period. And for the chipmunks, giving birth to babies can depend on so many things. From the geographic location to the weather or climate, there are a lot of factors that affect the births of the litters.
Today, our discussion will clear out when chipmunks have babies depending on their species and other factors. Let’s take a look at why they are born when they are born!
What Month Do Chipmunks Have Babies?
Animals are not like humans and so, they have a specific period of the year for breeding. And so, it’s easy for us to discuss when baby chipmunks are usually born. Mostly, the mother gives birth to the baby chipmunks in spring.
If we need to mention the months of the delivery, babies come to life in March and April. In this timeframe, the burrows get full of liters. Let’s learn about the burrows and know “where do chipmunks nest” here!
But if you think that that’s the only period when mother chipmunks will deliver babies, you are wrong. The diverse geographic climates have a serious effect on the lives of these rodents. And this is why the babies might not come to the earth in the mentioned period.
For the climate issues, at times, the spring season is extended in the lives of the chipmunks. This happens especially when the winter is long. If the winter is long, the chipmunks stay in hibernation for a longer period. That can make the mating season a little late.
And eventually, it will result in late breeding. In such a situation, the mother chipmunks might deliver the liters in May. Also, it can be extended to June if the winter is too long! And after the birth, how long do chipmunks stay with their mother? For the eastern chipmunks, they stay with their mother for about three months after being born. This applies to most of the chipmunk species.
Do chipmunks breed only once a year? Well, that’s the case with almost all the chipmunk species. They only breed and deliver once a year. But there can be changes depending on several things. There are 25 different species of chipmunks.
And all of these have little differences among them. Some specific species can also give birth to a second litter of babies. It means that they will give birth twice a year! The first litter of babies comes to the earth in spring or we can say in March or April. And the mother chipmunks give birth to the second litter of babies in September.
Breeding Cycle of Eastern Chipmunk
Most of the chipmunks among their species are Eastern chipmunks. You can find them almost all over the United States. They have two breeding cycles every year. They give birth to their first litter of babies in spring as we have mentioned above.
And after that, when midsummer arrives, they give birth to the second litter of babies. After the mating cycle is completed, the female chipmunks get a gestation period of 31 days to 35 days. And after these 31-35 days, they give birth to their babies.
The average number of babies they give birth to is 2 to 5. However, at times, the number of babies can be more than this. They can give birth to 8 babies too! But do the mothers live with the chipmunks? Check out how many chipmunks live together to know about it!
Now, let’s come to the spring part we have discussed above. The spring doesn’t start work noting the months in the case of the animals. For them, spring can arrive late or early. When we are dealing with the warmer parts of the USA, the chipmunks often confront early springs.
In that case, it starts in February for them. And following their mating season, their babies are born in March.
But the situation for the colder areas can be quite different. In that case, spring arrives late for these animals. In April, when spring arrives, their mating season starts. And finally, they give birth to cute litters in May.
Then what about the late summer breeding? When does it start? For the chipmunks, the late summer breeding season comes in June. And it usually lasts through August. Following the mating and breeding season, they give birth to new babies in late July and at times, in early September.
So, let’s make it easier for us. If we are talking about the Eastern chipmunks, their babies are born in March, April, and May. And the second litters are born in July, August, and September.
Other Chipmunk Species and the Breeding Cycle
Most of the chipmunks follow the Eastern chipmunk’s mating, breeding, and delivery periods. However, there are differences among some species. Here, we will discuss a few common chipmunk species and their newborns’ arrival times.
· California Chipmunk
These chipmunks are often found in southern California and they have a complex baby equation. Just like we have mentioned in the first stage, these chipmunks have one breeding season. But in their case, the breeding season is more long-lasting than the others.
It starts in January and goes through July! As a result, the whole period is for births. But they can also give birth to the second litters too! As the period is long, they are capable of breeding and giving birth to a second set of babies in the same season. For them, the babies can come to earth from February to August.
· Palmer’s Chipmunk
If you have ever visited Nevada or the spring mountains, you might have seen Palmer’s chipmunks. Their breeding cycle starts in April. The season extends to July. And after the period is done, the babies are born after 30-33 days. They give birth to the babies in their burrows and they stay inside to tell their babies are mature.
Learn more about their burrows and shelters in – where do chipmunks live! These children get mature by July or August. So, these chipmunks can give birth to their babies in July but they appear outside only after August.
· Red-Tailed Chipmunk
Another famed chipmunk- the red-tailed species, is found in the Rocky Mountains. Just like Palmer’s chipmunks, they too have one breeding cycle per year. Their breeding cycle starts in February and ends in July. Most of them mate in April or May.
After the mating, they go through a gestation period of 28 to 36 days and finally give birth to babies. At times the litter can die; in that case, the female chipmunk can enter the estrus once again! And there can be another mating cycle after this. Following this mating cycle, the mother can give birth to a new litter.
· Sonoma Chipmunk
California is full of chipmunks- you see! In northwest California, Sonoma chipmunks are common. They have one breeding cycle just like the previous two chipmunk species we have mentioned above. But in the case of these chipmunks, we try not to talk about months but about the spring season.
The females that are living near the sea level can enter estrus more or less 5 months earlier than the ones that live in the higher elevations.
Chipmunks are complicated animals and when we discuss their mating and breeding season followed by the birth of their litters- it gets more complicated. However, no matter what chipmunk species it is, it will have one or two breeding seasons at best. The birth of the children chipmunks depends a lot on the geographic location and the climate.