Those furry little entertaining foragers have become the focus of many popular cartoons, partly because of their entertaining nature. But they are no fun to have inside a house. Their popularity in North American countries like Canada has resulted in numerous squirrel removal requests in places like Oshawa.
Scientists have identified about 279 species of squirrels. These species all fall into one of three broad squirrel categories; tree squirrels, flying squirrels and ground squirrels. Flying squirrels though are typically included in the category of tree squirrels. Understandably, many people find it difficult to differentiate between the tree squirrels and ground squirrels. But when a squirrel intrudes on your space, you’ll need to know exactly what kind of squirrels you’re dealing with. Especially if you want to have the situation resolved speedily and successfully.
Tree Squirrels Versus Ground Squirrels – How to Tell Them Apart
If you just look at tree and ground squirrels, you probably won’t see any difference and may be tempted to label them as the same. After all, they both have bushy tails, fluffy fur, and strong hind legs. Another similarity is their diet as both types of squirrels consume a mostly fruit and nuts based diet. But a closer look or more detailed examination will reveal that these squirrels are actually quite different.
As the name suggests the tree and ground squirrels live in the trees and on the ground respectively. But that doesn’t mean tree squirrels won’t ever be seen on the ground or ground squirrels won’t ever be seen in trees. And that is why a close examination of the groups is so important.
If you look closer at these two you’ll find differences in appearance. While most ground squirrels have brown-gray fur with dots of white or cream colour, tree squirrels come in a range of fur colours. A tree squirrel’s fur may be white and brown, black, gray or red.
Size is another factor that you can use to determine if a squirrel is a tree or ground squirrel. Ground squirrels tend to be larger with sizes ranging from seven to eight inches in length and weights ranging between eight to fourteen ounces. Tree squirrels are smaller. This size helps them to handle life in their tree nests comfortably.
Tree squirrels have earned their name because they prefer to nest in trees. They spend a good amount of time on the ground, especially for foraging purposes. Ground squirrels dig into the earth to establish their burrows. These burrows can go as far as four feet below the earth and often they form an underground network allowing for below the surface interaction between families of ground squirrels.
When it comes to behaviour, these two categories of squirrel are more similar than different. For starters, they both have a habit of chattering among each other in an exchange that looks like a call and response situation. Tree squirrels stash food for the winter and so you’ll see them busily foraging and hiding their food especially as winter approaches. Ground squirrels don’t tend to do this since they sleep during the colder days of winter.
Why Squirrel Removal is so Tricky
Squirrels’ shifty acrobatics makes removal a very complicated task, especially if the person attempting the removal is untrained or inexperienced. These expert climbers, jumpers and runners are hard to corner and even harder to keep track of as they move so swiftly. This is why expert squirrel removal is always recommended when these animals intrude in Oshawa homes. Experts like those at Skedaddle spend a lot of time studying squirrel biology and behaviour, as a result, they are usually able to anticipate squirrel behaviour. This helps in making removal and exclusion an easier task for them.