Tree squirrels, most commonly the Red and the Grey squirrels, can reach lengths of eighteen inches (Red Squirrel) to two feel long (Grey Squirrel), and weigh as much as eighteen (Grey) to twenty-five (Red) ounces and live anywhere from five to ten years. However, studies in Belgium have suggested that the size and weight of the animals will vary depending on the sex and habitat they live in. Even though the two species are separated by color, there are many variations in the coats, from white (non-albino) to a dusty red, and the color of the coat changes with the season in a bi-annual molt. Both types of tree squirrels are active during the day.
Ground Squirrels are easily identifiable by their ability to stand straight up on their hind legs for long periods of time and remain comfortable while they look for danger, as well as raising the alarm when they find some. They vary in size, from the small chipmunk which is around six inches in length to the Prairie Dog, which can grow to be sixteen inches long, and some types of Marmots which can grow to be about twenty-nine inches long. Also included in this group is the Marmot family, which includes the Groundhog. Ground Squirrels are mostly communal creatures, except for some Marmots who prefer to live in solitude, and live in underground burrows. Depending on the climate they live in, Ground Squirrels will hibernate during the winter months.
Flying Squirrels, which jump out of trees and glide on the membrane that stretches from its front legs to the rear legs, are nocturnal animals that live in tree hollows or built nests. The Giant Flying Squirrels of Asia can grow to be as large as thirty-six inches long, while the species that live on our continent generally grow to be about ten inches long.
Images from the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service National Digital Library
U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service
Retrieved January 23, 2011.