All photographs copyright (2003-2013) by Kris H. Light

<strong>Gray Squirrel</strong>
<em>Sciurus carolinensis</em>

I photographed this little guy eating unripe Black Gum fruits in the tree just outside my livingroom window. Birds help trees by swallowing fruits whole and then passing the seeds undamag...
Gray Squirrel
Sciurus carolinensis

I photographed this little guy eating unripe Black Gum fruits in the tree just outside my livingroom window. Birds help trees by swallowing fruits whole and then passing the seeds undamaged, squirrels eat all parts of the fruit. The next time you are in the woods in the fall, practice your tracking skills and see if you can find signs of where squirrels have eaten fruits or nuts. It's not hard to do, they are messy eaters!
Squirrels are not picky eaters, they will eat not only nuts and acorns, but also fungi, insects, bird eggs, and sometimes even baby birds. They are rodents, like rats, mice,and beavers. Their long incisors never stop growing and must be kept worn down, this is why they can gnaw through acorn and hickory nut shells. My parents were preturbed to find that the squirrels in their yard had gnawed through the aluminum wires that held their chainlink fence to the top bar!
A squirrel's tail may look thick, but it is actually thinner than a pencil. The tail protects the squirrel in the rain and it acts as a rudder when it jumps from branch to branch (or your roof). It is interesting to see the way a squirrel chatters and twitches its tail when it is upset by the presence of a dog, cat, or even a person.

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