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Subscribe to this list via RSS Blog posts tagged in Squirrels

Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Squirrels: My Writing Muse

Whenever I am blocked in my writing, I watch squirrels. I see them bouncing from tree to tree or chasing each other. At other times, one squirrel will dig up a nut that another had just buried. Once I witnessed a lone squirrel sneaking up on a curbside vendor to steal a nut-bar from her truck. Before the hapless vendor could react, this crafty squirrel leapt off the countertop and scampered off with its prize.

Squirrels inspire me with their activity. Rarely staying still in one place, they leap from one tree branch, grab another limb, and then jump to the ground. This reminds me of my free writing, when I jump from topic to topic. Working with my squirrel muses, I seldom know where they will take me in my writing or where I will finally end up.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Chipmunk: Wise Use of Resources

The Chipmunk, a small striped-rodent, is a member of the Squirrel Family. Scientists usually divide the twenty five species of chipmunks into three groups – the Western Chipmunks (the largest group): Nectamias, the Eastern Chipmunk: Tamias, and the Siberian Chipmunk: Eutamias. The root “tamis” is Greek for steward, which reflects this species’ role in plant dispersal.

Chipmunk is named for her call – “chip-chip,” which sounds like a shrill bird-like chirp. Besides the chip-chip, She also employs a deep chuck, a trill, and a high-pitched startle call. Upon hearing her faint high chip, a dog’s ears will perk up. By the time the dog reacts, Chipmunk will be safe underground.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Animal Relationships: Introduction

To know their animal teachers more fully, people should study how these animals relate to other animals. All animals live in ecological systems where they have a role. Some are keystone species such as the alligator, who makes “gator holes” that provides food and homes for the other animals. Other animals contribute positively to the places that they live in. Stag beetles eat dead trees to make soil. “Negative” animals such as leeches have a role, too. They kill their host and help to keep the animal population in balance.

Some animals ignore each other, while others compete for the same food. More importantly, many animals form special relationships. Some are allies, and still others are in predator-prey relationships. The wolf and coyote compete for beaver, while the ratel (honey badger) and honeyguide look for bees together. The plover picks off leeches from a crocodile’s gums. (The plover gets a meal, and the crocodile gets her gums cleaned.) The great white shark pursues the elephant seal but is prey to the orca. Animal relationships are indeed complex and varied.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
CAPE GROUND SQUIRREL: Doing What Works

Living in the semiarid places of southern Africa, Cape Ground Squirrel (Xerus inauris) shades Herself with her tail from the hot sun. Active during the day, She likes to eat in the morning. Afternoons are for socializing and grooming. During other times of the day, Cape Ground Squirrel will sunbathe if the weather turns chilly.

Cape Ground Squirrel will share her burrow with Meerkats and Yellow Mongooses. In gratitude, Meerkats will call alarms to warn Her. The two mammal species will live in a mutual relationship.

Cape Ground Squirrel lives with other Female Squirrels in large underground burrows. She usually feeds on seeds, leaves, and roots. However, Cape Ground Squirrel is not above acting cute and begging from people. Her favorite haunts are the rest camps of the governmental parks in South Africa.

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Eurasian Red Squirrel: Living With Ordinariness and Wonder

Smaller and shier than Grey Squirrel, Eurasian Red Squirrel prefers living alone in the pine forests of Europe. After searching meticulously for food, He takes his pine cone to a secure branch for safety. Holding the cone in his front paws, Eurasian Red Squirrel rotates it while biting off the scales to get at the pine seeds.

People have admired Eurasian Red Squirrel for centuries. According to the Norse of Scandinavia, Ratatosk lived in the Tree of Life. He carried messages to Eagle, perched at the top, and to Snake, coiled around the roots. For his efforts, Ratatosk enjoyed the special protection of Thor, the God of Thunder.

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Grey Squirrel Wisdom: Past, Present, and Future

Since I wrote about the Squirrel Family (The Squirrel Family: Cooperation) as a whole, I will now highlight the wisdom of some of the members.

Agile and alert, Grey Squirrel remains active throughout the year. Chattering on tree branches, Grey Squirrel amuses people who watch her antics. What people do not know is that Grey Squirrel was a creature of the virgin forests of North America. She is one of the few Mammals who adapted to cities.

Grey Squirrel needs to eat every day even in the winter. Active at dawn, She searches for fruits and nuts or whatever is in season. In spring, She eats plant shoots. In winter, Grey Squirrel eats tree bark and nuts that She stored in the fall. She locates her stored nuts by smell. Any acorns that Grey Squirrel does not find will grow into trees for future squirrel homes.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
The Squirrel Family: Cooperation

In the Northern Hemisphere, autumn is approaching. One sign is Squirrels gathering nuts for the winter. As a species, Squirrels live worldwide in Asia and Africa as well.

When people think “Squirrel”, they generally think of the tree-dwelling variety. Squirrels, however, come in three main groups–Tree Squirrels, Ground Squirrels, and Flying Squirrels. The defining characteristic of a Squirrel, a Squirrel is their bushy tail. Their family name Sciuridae means “shade-tailed”.

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