Saturday, January 12, 2013

Squirrels Living in Harmony

The first winter we purchased our property and even before we moved in, we saw a white squirrel running around in the yard.  I had never seen one before and was just amazed by it.  I assumed it was an albino and we would never see one again.  I was wrong.  A few miles from us lives a colony of white squirrels.  They are not albinos, just a different color.  Only a few areas in the country have them and we are fortunate to be near one of those areas.  I don't know the science behind them.  I know black labs can have chocolate and yellow puppies.  Maybe it is the same with squirrels.  Maybe gray squirrels can have black or white babies.  I thought I should look it up and this is what I found.

Most so-called white squirrels in North America are genetic color variants of the gray species, not unlike the fairly common black squirrel. They breed normally and may have gray siblings.

I don't know if that answers any questions, but we also have many pure black and gray squirrels. 
 They all live in harmony.  
 Gray Squirrel
 White Squirrel
 Black Squirrel

In winter the white squirrel blends in with the snow,  but the rest of the year they stand out.  This is a problem because it makes them an easy target for predators.  I have seen them with blood on their tails and pieces of fur missing.  Unfortunately we haven't had one last for more than a season.

From these photos you can see how they stand out in the fall.

So far I haven't had any white squirrel visitors in 2013.  If one arrives, I will be sure to report.


We also have red squirrels but they are nasty little buggers.  I only see one of them at a time.  I don't think they get along with any other squirrels.  They don't share and they chase all the others away.  Whereas we see the gray and black squirrels on a daily basis, we don't see a red squirrel very often.

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