Cute animals, cuddly, and oh-so mischievous, squirrels are a common sighting on most outdoor adventures.
But, have you ever stopped to think about how many types of squirrels there really are?
If so, we’ve got you covered. We love spotting wildlife as much as anyone while we’re outside and we’re passionate about learning more about the world around us—squirrels included.
So, we’ve created this complete field guide to all things squirrel to get you started. Up next, we’ll walk you through the five main sub-families of squirrels and introduce you to some of the most notable species and genera of squirrels that you might come across while outside.
Without further ado, here’s our guide to the cutest and most common types of squirrels on Earth!
What Are The Different Types of Squirrels?
Before we dive into details about the different squirrel species and genera, let’s talk a bit about what squirrels actually are.
It turns out that there are hundreds of species of squirrels on Earth today—around 285, to be exact. In fact, squirrels live on every single continent, except Antarctica, so you’ll almost certainly see some on your next camping trip.
But, the fact that there are so many squirrels means that categorizing them all is quite difficult. Thankfully, taxonomists have done the hard work for us.
These days, squirrels are all grouped together into a single taxonomic family called Sciuridae. This family is within the order Rodentia, so basically all squirrels are rodents.
However, the Sciuridae family includes everything from tree squirrels (which is what most of us think of when we think of squirrels) to ground squirrels, flying squirrels, marmots, and chipmunks. So, there’s a lot more to squirrels than many folks think.
Now that we’re all on the same page about what squirrels are, let’s dive right into our list of all the types of squirrels.
We’ve broken everything down by subfamily, tribe, and genus to help you wrap your head around this massive animal family. Plus, we’ve even highlighted some of the most commonly-spotted squirrel species to help you identify them on your adventures.
Let’s get started!
Share this Image On Your Site
<a href="https://outforia.com/types-of-squirrels/"><img style="width:100%;" src="https://outforia.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/02/Squirrels.jpg"></a><br>Squirrels Infographic by <a href="https://outforia.com">Outforia</a>
You May Also Like: What Do Groundhogs Eat? Almost Anything!
1. Sciurinae Subfamily
Our first subfamily, the subfamily Sciurinae, is home to the majority of tree squirrels and their flying squirrel relatives. This subfamily contains two main tribes, Sciurini (tree squirrels) and Pteromyini (flying squirrels).
If you live in North America or Europe, the squirrels that you encounter are likely part of the Sciurinae subfamily. Some of these species are among the most widely found on Earth, so chances are pretty high that you’ve seen them during your travels.
Here’s what you need to know.
1.1 Tribe Sciurini: Tree Squirrels
The tribe Sciurini includes some 40 different species of squirrels, the vast majority of which live in either the Americas or in Europe. They are generally referred to as “tree squirrels” because, well, they tend to live in trees.
As these squirrels are so common, let’s take a closer look at some of the most frequently-spotted species in the tribe Sciurini.
1.1.1 Abert’s squirrel (Sciurus aberti)
Also known as the tassel-eared squirrel, the Abert’s squirrel boasts adorable tufted ears, a bushy tail, and a slender gray body. It’s found mostly in the Rocky Mountain states within the USA, including Colorado, Utah, Wyoming, and Arizona, though it can also be found in the mountains of central Mexico.
You’ll mostly see Abert’s squirrels in coniferous forests as they love to eat ponderosa pine. Interestingly enough, however, these squirrels don’t store their food for the winter months as they’re active all year long.
1.1.2 Amazon dwarf squirrel (Microsciurus flaviventer)
The Amazon dwarf squirrel is a chipmunk-sized squirrel that’s found mostly in northern South America. Its natural habitat ranges throughout Columbia, Peru, Brazil, Bolivia, and Ecuador, though you can generally find it in the Amazon Basin.
It tends to live in tropical rainforests as its uncharacteristically long limbs allow it to easily climb large trees.
Due to their small size, the Amazon dwarf squirrel can be tricky to spot. Plus, there are up to 8 known subspecies of this squirrel, which makes identification in the field quite tricky.
1.1.3 American red squirrel (Tamiasciurus hudsonicus)
One of the most commonly spotted squirrels out there, the American red squirrel is a small, reddish to gray-colored critter that lives throughout Canada, southern Alaska, the northeastern USA, and the Rocky Mountain states.
You can usually find it in mixed deciduous and coniferous forests where it likes to feast on nuts and pine seeds. These squirrels love to stockpile food, so you may come across piles of seeds and nuts called middens during your travels.
However, these squirrels are most active in the morning, so you’ll have to get up early if you’re looking to get some photos of these adorable critters.
1.1.4 Andean squirrel (Sciurus pucheranii)
Found almost exclusively in Colombia, the Andean squirrel is a small reddish-brown tree squirrel that lives high up in the Andes. It can generally be found between 6,600 and 10,800ft (2,000 to 3,300m) in elevation in the cloud forests and rainforest of the Colombian Andes.
Nevertheless, the small range of this squirrel means that relatively little is known about its habits and life cycle. However, it may potentially be divided up into 3 subspecies, depending on who you ask.
1.1.5 Arizona gray squirrel (Sciurus arizonensis)
As the name suggests, the Arizona gray squirrel is found within the US state of Arizona. It is a small gray-colored squirrel that tends to live in forested areas at the bottom of river canyons in the desert.
This squirrel prefers to live in deciduous forests where its favorite diet of juniper berries, acorns, and pine cones can be found. It tends to be quite skittish around humans, though you can often identify it by its cream-colored belly and large fluffy tail.
1.1.6 Bangs’s mountain squirrel (Syntheosciurus brochus)
One of the rarest members of the Sciuridae family, the Bang’s mountain squirrel is a poorly-studied species that lives in Panama and Costa Rica. It’s believed that the squirrel lives in rainforests between about 6,200 and 8,500ft (1,900 and 2,600m), though scientists had only identified a handful of them until fairly recently.
These squirrels tend to live deep in the rainforest, such as near the summit of the Poás Volcano of Costa Rica. They are quite small and they have a brown back with an orange-red belly, which means they blend in well with their surroundings.
1.1.7 Bolivian squirrel (Sciurus ignitus)
Aptly named, the Bolivian squirrel is a tree squirrel that’s found mostly in the sub-Andes regions of Bolivia and in some parts of Peru, Argentina, and Brazil. It tends to live in lowland areas below 8,800ft (2,700m) in elevation and it is most active during the daytime.
These squirrels are moderately-sized and they have dark olive-colored fur. However, despite their fairly wide distribution, relatively little is known about them. It is suspected that the Bolivian squirrel may even be subdividable into subspecies, but more research is needed.
1.1.8 Brazilian squirrel or Guianan squirrel (Sciurus aestuans)
Widely distributed throughout northeastern South America, the Brazilian squirrel (a.k.a. Guianan squirrel) is a moderately-sized brownish squirrel that lives in forested environments. It’s mostly found within the eastern Amazon Basin in Brazil, Venezuela, Suriname, Guyana, and French Guiana.
In general, this species is quite easy to identify because it’s the only widely-distributed tree squirrel of its size found in this part of South America. However, it may also be divided up into around 10 subspecies, most of which look very similar so precise identification is not also possible.
1.1.9 Calabrian black squirrel (Sciurus meridionalis)
Found primarily in Calabria and Basilicata in southern Italy, the Calabrian black squirrel is a moderately-sized critter that was once considered a subspecies of the red squirrel. However, the Calabrian squirrel is mostly black with the exception of a cream-colored splotch on the stomach.
This squirrel can be found in forested areas of southern Italy, particularly in stands of oak or pine. Its favorite food source is the pine seeds of black pine, though it is possible that the squirrel will be listed as near-threatened soon due to its small range.
1.1.10 Central American dwarf squirrel (Microsciurus alfari)
Known for its shyness around humans, the Central American dwarf squirrel is a moderately-sized squirrel that lives in southern Central America. It can normally be found within Panama, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, and northern Colombia, but its shy nature means that it’s relatively hard to spot.
While their name might suggest that they’re quite small, these squirrels are about the same size as a red squirrel. However, they are generally darkly colored with olive-green to brown fur coats. They tend to live in rainforests where the dense foliage helps shield them from predators while also providing plenty of nuts and seeds for them to enjoy.
1.1.11 Collie’s squirrel or Pacific gray squirrel (Sciurus colliaei)
Found only in northwestern Mexico, the Collie’s squirrel (a.k.a. Pacific gray squirrel) is a gray-colored critter that lives in subalpine canyons. It is usually found in the states of Colima, Jalisco, Durango, Nayarit, Sinaloa, Sonora, and Chihuahua, though you’ll usually only spot them in forested terrain.
These squirrels tend to eat solely fruits and nuts. They also like to nest in tree trunks, so they can be tricky to spot when they’re not scurrying around.
1.1.12 Deppe’s squirrel (Sciurus deppei)
The Deppe’s squirrel is a small, relatively common squirrel found throughout southern Mexico and Central America. It varies a bit in color, but most individuals are rusty-colored on the back with a lightly-colored stomach.
These squirrels can be tricky to identify because their range overlaps with that of many other species. You can sometimes find them hanging around archaeological sites, such as in Guatemala’s Tikal National Park. Nevertheless, they have a varied habitat and can be found nearly anywhere in tropical forest habitats.
1.1.13 Douglas squirrel (Tamiasciurus douglasii)
One of the most commonly-spotted squirrels in the northwestern US and southwestern British Columbia, the Douglas squirrel is a very active woodland critter that can be found in coniferous forests. It tends to prefer old-growth forests, though you can sometimes find them in stands of mature second-growth conifers.
Due to the fact that the Douglas squirrel essentially replaces the American red squirrel in this habitat, it is relatively easy to spot. These squirrels also have much darker coloring on their backs with lightly-colored coats on the underside, which helps distinguish them from other similar species.
1.1.14 Eastern gray squirrel (Sciurus carolinensis)
Another of the most commonly-spotted squirrel species in North America, the eastern gray squirrel is found throughout the eastern half of the continent. It boasts a characteristic gray coat with a white-ish underside and a bushy tail, so it’s quite distinctive in appearance.
As one of the most ecologically successful squirrel species out there, you can find eastern gray squirrels pretty much anywhere there’s a forest within its range. These squirrels are scatter-hoarders, so they will stash food in caches for the winter months.
Nevertheless, they were introduced to some areas of Europe in the 1800s and 1900s, where they are now considered an invasive species that threatens the habitat of the Eurasian red squirrel (Sciurus vulgaris).
1.1.15 Eurasian red squirrel (Sciurus vulgaris)
Found throughout the British Isles, continental Europe and Central Asia, the Eurasian red squirrel is one of the most widely-distributed squirrel species on the planet.
As the name suggests, the squirrel is mostly red in color, though it takes on a gray coat in the winter months. Some subspecies, such as those in the Swiss Alps and southwestern Poland are also fully black in color except for their white bellies.
These squirrels can be found in almost any forested locale within their range. However, while Eurasian red squirrels are native to their territory, they do have to compete with the introduced eastern gray squirrel (Sciurus carolinensis), which was introduced to its range in the 1800s and 1900s.
1.1.16 Fox squirrel (Sciurus niger)
Considered to be one of the largest tree squirrels, the fox squirrel is found throughout eastern North America. It is up to twice as large as American red or eastern gray squirrels, and it tends to be brown-gray in color.
They prefer to live in open forests with little undergrowth, so you can often find them in stands of trees along the edges of farmland. As a result of their larger size, fox squirrels have a varied diet, which can include everything from bird eggs and insects to acorns and other nuts.
1.1.17 Guayaquil squirrel (Sciurus stramineus)
Found primarily in Ecuador and Peru, the Guayaquil squirrel is a common sight in urban areas. This squirrel is mostly gray in color and it has a massive bushy tail. It will normally eat seeds, though it is an opportunistic feeder that will eat nearly anything to survive.
While these squirrels are native to dry and humid forests, they have become a mainstay in some of the region’s cities. This is particularly true in Lima, where a small population of them was introduced to city parks.
1.1.18 Japanese squirrel (Sciurus lis)
Aptly named, the Japanese squirrel is found only on the islands of Kyūshū, Shikoku, and Honshū in Japan. It is quite small and has a darkly-colored coat that can vary from black to pale gray depending on the time of year.
That being said, the species is quickly dwindling in population, particularly around Kyūshū, where much of its population has disappeared. Much of this disappearance is due to habitat fragmentation and the rapid urbanization of the landscape, which has removed much of the Japanese walnut trees that these squirrels rely on for food.
1.1.19 Mearns’s squirrel (Tamiasciurus mearnsi)
The Mearn’s squirrel is an endangered species of squirrel that’s found only in the Sierra de San Pedro Mártir mountains of Mexico’s Baja California. The squirrel is quite small and has a gray-brown fur coloring with a solid black stripe running down each side.
Interestingly, the Mearn’s squirrel is only found in forested areas that are mostly surrounded by desert and chaparral. As a result, it’s likely that the species was separated from other nearby squirrels within the last ten thousand years or so, which has led to its evolution as a separate species.
1.1.20 Mexican fox squirrel (Sciurus nayaritensis)
Relatively large among the tree squirrels, the Mexican fox squirrel is a grizzled-looking critter found in western Mexico and southern Arizona, USA. These squirrels are excellent foragers, so you’ll often see them searching for pine cones and other sources of food.
They are generally found in lower-elevation locales, particularly within Madrean forest ecosystems. Outside of Mexico, however, they can only be found in Arizona’s Chiricahua Mountains.
Furthermore, it’s believed that there are three subspecies of the Mexican fox squirrel, but it’s unclear if these are actually distinct species.
1.1.21 Mexican gray squirrel (Sciurus aureogaster)
Native to both southern Mexico and Guatemala, the Mexican gray squirrel is a relatively large animal that lives mostly in deciduous forests. The squirrel’s habitat of choice is forests of West Indian mahogany, where it often makes its nests.
While the squirrel is native to Central America and southern Mexico, it was introduced to the US state of Florida in the 1930s. There, it is considered to be an invasive species that has caused problems for local ecosystems. Interestingly, it is also known to nest in hurricane debris after a storm.
1.1.22 Persian squirrel or Caucasian squirrel (Sciurus anomalus)
The Persian squirrel (a.k.a. Caucasian squirrel) is a gray-brown critter found in southwestern Asia, mostly in the Caucasus and in Iran. It lives mostly in temperate mixed forests of pine, oak, and pistachio, though it is generally found below 6,600ft (2,000m) in elevation.
It’s believed that there are 3 subspecies of Persian squirrels, most of which are geographically isolated. They all tend to be moderately-sized, however, and they usually prefer to forage on oak and pine seeds.
1.1.23 Peters’s squirrel (Sciurus oculatus)
The Peters’s squirrel is a large gray to dark-brown squirrel that can be found in central Mexico. It is endemic to the country and it is usually only found in pine and oak forests.
Generally speaking, the Peters’s squirrel is fairly easy to spot during the summer months. It gets quite active during the warm season, so you’ll likely spot them while hiking. However, they also share a habitat with the Mexican gray squirrel (Sciurus aureogaster) and the southern flying squirrel (Glaucomys volans), which can make identification a challenge.
1.1.24 Red-tailed squirrel (Sciurus granatensis)
A common sight in southern Central America and northern South America, the red-tailed squirrel is a tiny, tufted-tail animal with many sub-species. It is native to countries like Ecuador, Venezuela, Panama, Costa Rica, and Colombia, as well as the islands of Trinidad and Tobado. However, it was introduced to Cuba, where it is considered an invasive species.
Color-wise, the red-tailed squirrel exhibits a large degree of variation. While some subspecies (of which there are about 30) have reddish coats, others are more gray in color. However, these squirrels are very common in their range, so you will likely see them if traveling in these areas.
1.1.25 Southern Amazon red squirrel (Sciurus spadiceus)
As the name suggests, the southern Amazon red squirrel is a reddish-colored tree squirrel that lives in the southern part of the Amazon Basin. It is relatively large in size, which makes it fairly easy to identify among other species in its range.
The southern Amazon Red squirrel is among the most widely distributed species in its area. It is usually found on the ground, despite being a tree squirrel, where it forages for food. It’s believed that there are 3 subspecies of this squirrel, though scientists are not yet certain of the precise range of each of these subspecies.
1.1.26 Tufted Ground Squirrel (Rheithrosciurus macrotis)
Found only on the island of Borneo, the tufted ground squirrel is an endangered species that is the sole member of its genus Rheithrosciurus.
This squirrel is known for having one of the largest tail-to-body size ratios of any mammal on Earth. In fact, its tail is believed to be an average of 30% longer than its body.
You can find the tufted ground squirrel mostly on the ground, but it is a tree squirrel that can climb up to the canopy if need be.
Interestingly, it has also been filmed eating insects, which isn’t common among squirrels. But, it mostly eats nuts from trees in the Canarium genus, its preferred food source.
1.1.27 Variegated squirrel (Sciurus variegatoides)
Native to Central America, the variegated squirrel is a common sight in its range. It’s believed that there are about 15 subspecies of this squirrel, though they are mostly found in El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua, Panama, Guatemala, and southern Mexico.
For the most part, these squirrels can be found in both deciduous and coniferous forests in the lowland regions below about 6,000ft (1,800m). It has a characteristic orangeish body coloring with a large black stripe down its back.
However, some people have tried to keep these animals as pets in recent years. Indeed, a number of breeders of the squirrels in Germany were infected with a type of bornavirus transmitted from the animals, which resulted in the death of 3 people.
1.1.28 Western gray squirrel (Sciurus griseus)
One of the most common squirrels in the western United States, the western gray squirrel is one of the largest tree squirrels in its range. It can sometimes weigh up to 2.2lbs (1kg) and it usually has a silvery-gray coat that distinguishes it from neighboring species, such as the Douglas squirrel (Tamiasciurus douglasii).
These squirrels tend to be quite shy, but you can normally find them in forested locales during the daytime hours. They prefer to feed on nuts, acorns, and other high-carbohydrate food sources, which are essential for their survival during the winter months.
1.1.29 Yucatan squirrel (Sciurus yucatanensis)
Found exclusively on the Yucatán Peninsula, the Yucatan squirrel is a common sight in the region’s evergreen and deciduous forests. It is fairly large in size and mostly gray in coloring, though it often has a lightly colored path on its underside.
Interestingly, these squirrels were once considered to be a variation of the eastern gray squirrel (Sciurus carolinensis), but it has since been identified as its own species. Furthermore, the Yucatan squirrel also has 3 recognized subspecies, each of which is found in different parts of the peninsula.
1.1.30 Lesser-Known Tree Squirrel Species
In addition to the 29 species listed above, there are other members of the Sciuridae that are poorly-identified in the scientific literature. These species include:
- Allen’s Squirrel (Sciurus alleni)
- Fiery squirrel (Sciurus flammifer)
- Junín red squirrel (Sciurus pyrrhinus)
- Northern Amazon red squirrel (Sciurus igniventris)
- Richmond’s squirrel (Sciurus richmondi)
- Sanborn’s squirrel (Sciurus sanborni)
- Santander Dwarf Squirrel (Microsciurus santanderensis)
- Western Dwarf Squirrel (Microsciurus mimulus)
- Yellow-throated squirrel (Sciurus gilvigularis)
Some of these species either have very small distributions or live in very remote areas. As a result, they are not well-studied and little is known about their habits. Some, like the Sanborn’s squirrel may even be close to extinction, but more research is needed to confirm their status.
1.2 Tribe Pteromyini: Flying Squirrels
While the tree squirrels in the Sciurini tribe often get all the attention, it’s worth pointing out that there is another tribe located within the Sciurinae Subfamily: the tribe Pteromyini.
This tribe contains nearly all of the species that we refer to as “flying squirrels.” There are approximately 50 species within this tribe, almost all of which have the ability to “glide” from one tree to another.
While these squirrels can’t fly in the same way that a bird can, they do have something called a patagium, which is a furry membrane that connects their front paws to their back paws. This patagium then helps them stay stable in flight, giving them the name, flying squirrels.
Scientists currently agree that there are about 15 genera of flying squirrels:
You may also like: How Long Do Squirrels Live? Longer Than You’d Think
2. Sciurillinae Subfamily
One of the smallest subfamilies of squirrels, the Sciurillinae subfamily contains just one species: the neotropical pygmy squirrel (Sciurillus pusillus).
This squirrel is one of the smallest tree squirrel-esque species found in the Americas. It measures about 3.9in (10cm) long and usually weighs less than 1.7oz (48g). For the most part, it has a grizzled gray appearance but it can also look quite red.
The neotropical pygmy squirrel is found in about 4 different regions in the Amazon Basin. These include in Brazil, Colombia, Suriname, Peru, and French Guiana, though not much is really known about their habits.
3. Ratufinae Subfamily
Also called the oriental giant squirrels, the Ratufinae subfamily includes species that live in southeast Asia. There is just one genus in this subfamily, Ratufa, that contains 4 living species:
- Cream-colored giant squirrel (Ratufa affinis)
- Black giant squirrel (Ratufa bicolor)
- Indian giant squirrel (Ratufa indica)
- Grizzled giant squirrel (Ratufa macroura)
It’s believed that these large squirrels were much more widespread in prehistoric times.
These days, they are among the biggest squirrels on earth with an average length of up to about 17.7in (45cm), which makes them larger than your average marten. They are also known to weigh about 4.4lbs (2.2kg), which is quite large for a squirrel.
Most of these squirrels live in the canopy of tropical rainforests where they can jump between trees with relative ease. However, most of their habitat is threatened and many of these species are classified as near-threatened due to deforestation.
4. Callosciurinae Subfamily
Sometimes called the “beautiful squirrels,” the Callosciurinae subfamily is a collection of about 60 different squirrel species that are found in southern Asia. There are 14 different genera of these squirrels that are currently accepted by the scientific community. This includes:
For the most part, species within this subfamily are reddish, yellowish, or white in color with bright patterns and tones. They have fairly bushy tails, though they tend to be larger than the tree squirrels found in the Americas.
Furthermore, these species tend to live in tropical forested environments. Unlike some of their neighbors in the western hemisphere, however, the beautiful squirrels usually don’t cache food nor do they hibernate at any point during the year.
5. Xerinae Subfamily
The final subfamily of squirrels, the Xerinae Subfamily is home to a wide number of species that many people might not normally think of as squirrels. That’s because this subfamily includes rodents such as marmots, prairie dogs, chipmunks, and ground squirrels.
However, all of these species are related to the tree squirrels that we commonly see in forested environments. While they live mostly on the ground, some species within the Xerinae Subfamily do also live in trees like their better-known tree-dwelling relatives.
Within the Xerinae Subfamily, there are 3 tribes, about 30 genera, and more than 130 species.
5.1 Tribe Marmotini
The tribe Marmotini, also known as the “ground squirrels,” is a grouping of rodents that, as you might’ve guessed, tend to live on the ground.
There are currently 15 genera within the Marmotini tribe with living species. This includes:
While all of the species within these genera are grouped together into one tribe, they vary widely in terms of their size, habitat, and lifestyle.
Some of the best-known species in North America include the marmots (genus Marmota), which inhabit alpine environments. Others, like the prairie dogs (genus Cynomys), are more commonly found in plains environments.
Furthermore, this tribe includes the genus Tamias, which contains all the chipmunks. So, while most of the species in this tribe are ground-dwellers, chipmunks do spend most of their time in trees.
5.2 Tribe Xerini
Similar to the tribe Marmotini, the tribe Xerini also contains species that are considered to be “ground squirrels.” However, the majority of the species in this tribe are found in Africa and Asia, unlike the tribe Marmotini, which mostly includes species from the Americas.
There are currently 3 genera of the tribe Xerini with a total of 6 living species. These genera include:
The most characteristic aspect of species in this tribe is their rigid, bristly fur. However, they are closely related to the tribe Protoxerini, which has led some taxonomists to suggest that they may be worth classifying as part of the same tribe.
5.3 Tribe Protoxerini
The final tribe of the Xerinae subfamily is the tribe Protoxerini. These squirrels are found almost exclusively on the continent of Africa and they are very closely related to the members of the tribe Xerini.
Scientists currently agree that there are 6 genera within the tribe Protoxerini, which contain 30 living species between them. These genera include:
For the most part, the species within the tribe Protoxerini live in forested environments in sub-Saharan Africa. However, most of these species are still relatively unknown to the scientific community, so species may be added or combined as research on the subject grows in the coming years.
You may also like:
Penguin Identification Guide: 19 Types of Penguins with their Names, Pictures and Facts!
Rattlesnake Identification Guide: All Fascinating Types of Rattlesnakes with Names, Facts and Pictures You May Want to Check!
Squirrel Fun Facts
If you’ve stuck with us until this point, congrats! You now know a whole lot about all things squirrel-related and you’re ready to start identifying some of the most common species in your area.
But, it’s always good to have a few fun facts in your back pocket so you can impress your friends with your squirrel knowledge while you’re outside. So, here are some of our favorite squirrel fun facts to check out:
1| Some Flying Squirrels Are Pink
Did you know? Some flying squirrels are actually pink. Okay, well they don’t walk around with pink fur all the time, but some species of flying squirrels do appear pink under UV light.
Now, we don’t know why anyone thought to shine a UV light over flying squirrels in the first place, but it’s believed that they glow hot pink as a way to impress each other in low light. Who knew?
2| Squirrels Have Been Known To Adopt Orphans
It’s usually a harsh world out there in the animal kingdom, but new studies show that some squirrels are willing to be kind to their fellow woodland critters.
In fact, a study found that some squirrels will take in orphaned squirrel pups, especially if the pup is related to the adoptive mother. Interestingly enough, the potential adoptive mother will often assess any pups that they might want to adopt before committing to the relationship.
3| Squirrels Don’t Always Like To Play Nice
Now, we know we just gave you a heart-warming fun fact about how squirrels will adopt orphan pups, but these woodland critters aren’t always so nice. Indeed, they are experts at stealing from each other.
Squirrels actually learn quite early on in their lives how to steal food from neighboring squirrels, which can be essential to their survival. So, while they can be kind in certain situations, you won’t want to leave your snacks unattended in the squirrel world!
4| Squirrel Appreciation Day is January 21st
Yep, there’s an international squirrel appreciation day and it’s celebrated on January 21st each year. So, every January 21st, don’t forget to take some time to ponder the wacky ways of these excitable rodents. They’re pretty amazing creatures that we often overlook because they’re so common. But, it’s probably not easy to be a squirrel!