1. Squirrels are known for constantly foraging and hoarding food… and for stealing! They lose 25 percent of their food to theft by birds and other squirrels.
2. Celebrate furry friends on Jan. 21: National Squirrel Appreciation Day.
3. A handful of these mischievous creatures was first released in 1877 in New York’s Central Park, where the population has since flourished.
4. Squirrels are surprisingly fast; at top speed, they can run 20 mph.
5. Their superhero-like talent to reach seemingly inaccessible bird feeders comes from the ability to rotate their hind feet 180 degrees.
6. There are 285 squirrel species around the world and three over-arching kinds: ground, tree and flying.
7. Most gray types can pull off an 8-foot jump from a stationary position.
8. A squirrel’s four front teeth grow about 10 inches a year. (Gnawing keeps them short)
The above information taken from http://www.birdsandblooms.com
More information about squirrels. I found this interesting. My dad would love to go squirrel hunting is about all I knew about them.
Yes, our cute squirrel friends are in fact part of a huge family of Squirrels (Sciuridae) which also makes them cousins of prairie dogs, the woodchucks, the amazing flying squirrel and both tree and ground squirrels. The Squirrels are pretty widespread too because their kin can be seen all over the trees, parks and woodlands across the globe—Australia, Asia and the Europe.
Aside from the famous love of nuts, the facts are these furry friends of ours can also dine on small insects, roots, tree bark, leaves and acorns. It can be noted that when you give a certain type of squirrel tree bark for him to chew, the little guy would just flatly ignore it. Don’t feel bad because some Squirrel species do not have stomachs that break down cellulose (the chemical that makes the tree hard).
Squirrels will typically gather and save a lot of their food all year round but this is definitely true when it comes to the autumn time. When you see them collecting all their nuts just before winter it is because they are getting ready for winter and they want to make sure that they have enough food to last them. After they have buried all of their food and when winter comes and goes, the squirrel will wake up out of hibernation and go look for the food they buried!
Did you know that their name came was credited from the old Greek word Skiouros? The ancient Greek naturalists find their brushy tails remarkable as the meaning of Skiouros is “shadow tail”. Even though they are generally depicted onscreen as adorable brown chestnut lovers with a large fluffy tail, the Squirrel family’s looks are rather divergent. Some are decidedly dark like the Eastern Gray Squirrel while others sport white stripes on the back like the Indian Palm Squirrel. In fact, there are 200 different kinds of Squirrels worldwide.Now that's a cool squirrel fact! One famous relative of theirs, the flying squirrel has a special stretchy skin called the patagium that extends and helps the animal glide through the air. When it takes its jump, scientists report that it could daringly take the plunge from 150 feet—such an amazing feat for a little guy!
Did you know that despite having perfect vision as adults, baby squirrels are blind at birth? Many mother squirrels can have two to eight babies at once. These young ones must also depend on their caring mother for food and drink (mostly milk) for about a couple of months. After that, these individuals grow mature and can fully hunt for food themselves. Baby squirrels are called kittens and kittens are born only twice a year. Once in the spring time and once at the end of the summer.
When some Squirrels live in groups, they exhibit camaraderie. This altruistic (unselfish trait) usually comes off when they feel that there is danger approaching. They produce warning calls to alert their fellow rodents from lurking predators. The one who initiates the calls—yes, this good guy—is likely to be the one to leave last. Hence, his life is put in more danger.
Generally all squirrels live in trees, basically in the holes of trunks or even in the treetop in abandon crow’s nests. Squirrels will usually start looking for a nest when they start to mate, which is when they are about a year old.
Taken from http://www.about-squirrels.com/squirrel-facts
Till next time, this is Becky Litterer from Becky's Greenhouse, Dougherty Iowa