Information about squirrels
Rodents belong to the mammals within the animal kingdom, and are considered one of the largest orders of mammals; Where rodents include many types of animals, amounting to more than forty percent of the number of mammals, and rodents are characterised by having strong front teeth that help them to loan food very quickly for ease of eating, and rodents reproduce by birth and to a very large degree and they loan all kinds of food that they find, and rodents are distinguished With the beautiful fur that covers their bodies, and some of them are classified as pets such as squirrels and hamsters, and in this article some information about squirrels will be provided.
Squirrels are classified as small or medium-sized rodents, and their original habitat is North America, South America, Eurasia and Africa, and they have also been transferred to the continent of Australia, and squirrels are characterised by many characteristics that can be mentioned in the form of points
- The bodies of squirrels are distinguished by their thin sizes, and they have bushy tails and large eyes in the front of the head, and they have soft and silky fur that varies in colour from one squirrel to another.
- Squirrels have hind limbs that are longer than the front ones, and each end has four or five toes with powerful claws.
- Squirrels easily climb and descend trees by rotating the ankle 180 degrees to facilitate backward movement.
- Squirrels live in almost all environments such as tropical rainforests and deserts, but they cannot live in high polar regions and very dry deserts.
- Squirrels feed on seeds and nuts, so they are considered herbivores, and in some species they feed on insects and even small vertebrates.
- Squirrels have excellent vision due to their large eyes, and some species have a great sense of touch, shaking their limbs and heads as well.
- They have strong teeth called incisors in the front of the mouth that they use to chop and cut food, and they grow continuously throughout their life, and there are teeth inside the mouth behind the cheek for grinding and storing food.
- An adult squirrel has a lifespan of 10 to 20 years, and some young squirrels may die prematurely if they fall from the nest on the tree.
types of squirrels
There are many types of squirrels that live in different environments in many places around the world, which differ in the way they live or in the way they eat, their adaptation to the environment in which they live, as their life has become suitable for the wildlife in which they live, and one of the main species in the family of squirrels
that are miserable on trees in the forests, and there are about 55 species of tree squirrels, and they are characterised by the presence of a thick and long tail that helps them jump between trees, looking for food in the daytime, and they are found in black, red, brown and grey colours, and they make annoying sounds when they get hurt.
It is characterised by grey colour, and lives in eastern and western North America in coniferous and oak forests, and grey squirrels are characterised by the presence of long and distinctive hair on the top of its ears.
They are distinguished by their red colour and white feet, and live on trees in coniferous forests, and they do not sleep and remain vigil throughout the winter.
or chikari, found in coniferous forests in Britain and California, and is based on storing food in large quantities to be eaten in the winter.
They live in burrows inside the ground, and are found in western and northern North America, and are characterised by having yellow or grey fur with white stripes, and ground squirrels spend the winter in hibernation.
which are characterised by their small size and golden colour, and are found in the tundra and extensive pine forests in the Rocky Mountains.
which are largely found in forests located in the eastern United States and southeastern Canada, and American squirrels live in underground burrows, and are characterised by the presence of small bags in their cheeks to transport food to their burrows.
They are found in tropical forests, and they are nocturnal animals that are able to fly due to the presence of leathery wings between their edges, and are widely found throughout North America.
The squirrel is one of the animals that is not recommended to be raised as a pet, because it is not one of the gentle animals that love humans.
- Avoid holding and cuddling a squirrel because it does not like the feeling of being trapped, and it is very tense.
- keep it away from children, and not get close to it too much; Because he won’t hesitate to bite with his sharp teeth.
- Keep the squirrel in a large cage so that it can empty its energy and move freely, and not let it roam free in the house until after it has been well trained, and put it under observation because squirrels are accustomed to identifying the areas that they discover with urine, and they may spread food and faeces on the floor and furniture.
- Put the cage in a quiet place away from direct sunlight.
- Keep squirrels away from plants because they may be damaged by their sharp teeth.
- Do not collect squirrels with dogs, cats and parrots in the same house, and when there is more than one squirrel, each one should be kept in his own cage.
Squirrels feed on nuts, fruits, nest eggs, and bird chicks.
The food of the squirrel varies from season to season.
At the beginning of the spring season, the squirrel feeds on buds, flowers, in addition to insects, mollusks, and a few eggs.
In the summer, it feeds on fruits. In the fall, it feeds on seeds and nuts such as conifers, nuts, hazelnuts, and acorns.
The reserves are stored for the winter, by storing them in tree holes or burying them underground, where one individual can collect approximately 2000 nuts and deposit them in approximately one hundred stores.
It is reported that the squirrel has the ability to remember the areas where food was hidden when needed .
The squirrels are characterised by occupying their own area, and they use annoying sounds and loud screams as a means to defend them, and the male and female each live in an area independent of the other until the breeding date comes, then the male joins the female area, which in turn fights him and removes him from it when the end of it.
The breeding season, and the female gives birth to 2-6 squirrels in each process of laying, and she can give birth twice in one year.
How to take care of baby squirrels
Squirrels reproduce by birth, and a female squirrel gives birth twice a year, in early spring and at the end of summer, at a rate of three to four young each time, with an average gestation period of 40 to 44 days.
The young to four weeks of age begins to open its eyes, and at the age of six weeks, the young squirrel can get out of the nest, then it is able to separate from its mother and survive largely in the wild, and squirrels may be exposed while they are young inside the nest to the risk of falling from the top of the tree and getting fractures Or disease, if an infected small squirrel is found, it is possible to provide first aid to him or contact the wild animal care centre located in the area, and trying to care for a small squirrel inside the house and raise it as a pet is very difficult because it is one of the animals that cannot survive alone, and it can Experts in the care of wild animals provide them with adequate assistance so that they can return to their normal life in the wild.