This week in squirrels November 3, 2014

You got your squirrel in my pumpkin…

Squirrels and Halloween go together like chocolate and peanut butter. I remember the first year we put out a jack-o-lantern, only to find tiny nibbles and bits of pumpkin all over our porch. Great! Well, Halloween was just a few days ago, so it’s not too late to look at some squirrel-related Halloween stories.

Squirrels ruined over $100 worth of pumpkins in this guy’s yard ($100 in pumpkins? Really?)

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What happens when you let the squirrel carve the pumpkin?

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And yes, squirrels are naïve enough to stick their head in a pumpkin for cute photos

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Did they read this squirrel his Miranda Rights?

copcarA squirrel was found in a police car – looking for donuts?


Animal control called when “Squirrel acting nuts”

Locals were concerned and called the cops when a squirrel was chasing children away from a playground, but it appears that the squirrel was just stashing nuts under a swingset. Unfortunately, the animal control officer used this as an opportunity to misinform children about squirrel hibernation habits (tree squirrels don’t hibernate) but OH WELL.

When your power goes out, it was probably a squirrel

A massive squirrel-related power outage was reported in Providence, RI (where the squirrel touched the substation “in the right way” – some of us might say “in the wrong way”), some residents were pleased by getting the afternoon off from work, but the resulting fire and chaos led to a delay in a bribery trial. No worries, the local mall was still powered. Squirrels shut off power in Seymour, IN, Pueblo, CO, Northhampton, MA, Muskegon, MI (where children were dismissed from school), Lewiston, ME, Brattleboro, VT, and Emporia, KS.                                                                                    

Squirrel hunting can be dangerous for humans and squirrels alike

A man who was bowhunting is in serious condition after another hunter mistook him for a squirrel and shot him in the head. I’m still not clear on how this happens – do you just see what you want to?

And this teen shot himself in the leg while prepping for a squirrel hunt.

Squirrels damage human stuff

A “treetop adventure centre” had to shut down operations after they discovered that squirrels had chewed through ropes and part of a power fan. I guess when you are in “simulated free-fall” you don’t want to leave your fate up to squirrels – so the adventure center has built a cage around the equipment to keep the squirrels out.

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Understanding squirrel sounds

Thaddeus McRae has studied how squirrels respond differently to aerial and ground predators, including the squirrel's various alarm calls, with unique methods that included a robotic cat.

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Squirrels and their natural enemies

Speaking of ground and aerial predators  - a cat stalks a squirrel – but then the squirrel decides to chase the cat! Yes there is video.

But it’s not always that easy for the squirrel – watch this rodent run for their life from a hawk.

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Conservation Corner

Scotland’s Reds

A country club or red squirrels – which would you rather have? Conservationists are trying to ensure that a massive hotel and spa won’t have a negative impact on the endangered red squirrel.

And scientists are using computer modeling to understand how the squirrelpox virus may spread from the gray squirrel population to red squirrels.

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Flying squirrels on the increase?

In Finland, wildlife authorities are getting several calls from locals reporting flying squirrels – mainly concerned that sightings of this beautiful but at-risk animals may impact their ability to develop areas where they are seen. GO HUMANS!

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Squirrel donates skin for science

Sort of. Scientists are analyzing 100 year-old squirrel skins for science, helping get genetic information that can be applied to increase understanding of endangered squirrel species and their conservation.

Not your typical squirrel

White squirrels in Park Slope in Brooklyn and Worcestershire in the UK caused excitement recently. The Park Slope squirrel caused the Gothamist to ask (perhaps in poor taste) “What other white animals would you like to see in Brooklyn?” Uh, last I checked Brooklyn was already pretty gentrified.

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Tailless squirrels

Learn how this squirrel lost his tail and lived to tell.

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Not a chipmunk

The golden-mantled ground squirrel is cute, chatty, and often mistaken for a chipmunk. Read more about this creature here.

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Olney Illinois cares about squirrels

A yearly squirrel count revealed fewer gray and white squirrels with an increase in fox squirrels. A town that actually encourages squirrel feeding! If you’d like to know the temperature during the squirrel count, the Olney Daily Mail will let you know that too (it's a three-page article about the squirrel count).

What do squirrels do during the solar eclipse?

Turns out, they are extra restless. Learn how animals respond to the unique changes that happen during an eclipse.

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Cute corner

babysqIn case you never get tired of watching fostered baby squirrels being hand fed…this is for you.







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