09.20.2005 - Squirrels are cute for about three days. Seriously. That's how quickly they grow up. They are born ugly, hairless, sealed-eyes little things.
Not pleasant to look at. Then they start to sprout fur and such, and they still look like pitiful little hair transplant victim rats. Then you blink your eyes, and
they look like adult squirrels. They really grow quickly. In the process, there is about a three-day span during which they look like the above photo. Awww....
cute!!!! Super cute!!!
I happened to remove a few squirrels in this cute stage today. They were in an attic of a home, in a squirrel nest, as usual. I'm pretty sure that this squirrel was about 26 days old. It's too small to fend for itself, so after this photograph, I brought it and its bothers and sisters to a wildlife rehabilitator who takes care of baby squrirels and raises them until they are fit to live on their own. Oh, and a squirrel this size would not in fact eat a peanut. It's not yet fully weaned from its mother's milk.
Remember, if you hear a squirrel in your attic, there's probably a nest of these cute little guys up there, and they can't fend for themselves or go outside to get caught in traps. So you must be sure that you or the wildlife control operator that you hire properly removes the nest of baby squirrels, or they will starve and die and then cause an odor problem. You wouldn't want that of such a cute little squirrel, would you?
The Eastern Gray Squirrel (Sciurus carolinensis), is one of the most widespread nuisance animals in the country. It lives throughout most of the United States. It is arboreal (likes to live in trees), but just as commonly atticeal (likes to live in attics). It's a member of the rodent family, and is prone to chewing and gnawing. Squirrels are active during the daytime, particularly morning and evening. They are active year-round. They give birth to two litters of young per year, in late summer and late winter, commonly inside buildings they've chewed into. They are very agile and great climbers, and are active animals. They are cute, but often destructive, especially when they enter an attic.
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If you go outside or to a park, chances are, you are going to see a squirrel running up and down trees or you may see a baby squirrel with a peanut scurrying up a tree. These critters are larger than a rat in size and have very bushy tails and they are found all around the world. They are grouped together with marmots, prairie dogs, and chipmunks.
There are so many different breeds of squirrels and each breed is ranges in size. The smallest of the squirrel family is known as the African Pygmy and it grows up to about five inches in length. The largest is the Indian Giant Squirrel and it can grow up to three feet long.
North America typically sees gray squirrels and fox squirrels around. These are medium in size and can grow to about twenty inches in length excluding their tails.
A group of squirrels is referred to as a scurry. Squirrels can be territorial when they find their den location and if they have babies in the den. Squirrels sleep at night and are active during the day – all day from sunrise to sunset. Speaking of dens, squirrels live in areas where trees overlap each other or in the woods. They go very fast up and down the trees throughout their day.
A ground squirrel doesn't spend their time in the trees but instead lives in burrows under the ground and travels underneath the surface through a tunnel system.
A Squirrel's Diet
The diet of a squirrel is simple; they gather nuts that fall from the trees nearby and store them inside their den in preparation for the winter months.
A mother squirrel carries her babies from 30 to 65 days before giving birth to live young. A mother can carry anywhere from two to eight babies at one time. The babies are given the name kits and are born without their vision, so they rely on mom for everything for the first two or three months of life.
After the babies are about eight weeks of age, they are weaned from mother and ready to leave the nest. A young squirrel will only travel within a two-mile radius of the home den.
Baby squirrels and adult squirrels have four teeth in the front that grow constantly so they wear the teeth down by gnawing on nuts as well as other rough objects to keep their teeth at a comfortable size.
A squirrel's body includes padded feet that are great for providing cushioning when they land after a jump. They can jump approximately twenty feet in length at a time. They also have the ability to see to the side of their head at a distance without having to turn their heads in order to keep an eye out on any possible danger that may be nearby.
As baby squirrels grow, they will come out of the den and play with their siblings while staying on the tree or close by the tree while the mother is gathering food or hanging around nearby. If you see a baby squirrel, it is best to leave it alone because the mother could be nearby.