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The North American Grey-Tree Squirrel

Updated on April 18, 2013

The North American Grey-Tree Squirrel

The North American Grey or Tree Squirrel is the most recognized squirrel in America. The squirrel is the most familiar to people by far, than any other rodent. Squirrels are mostly seen during the day. They are diurnal, which means that they are mostly active during the day-time hours. Squirrels are seen in parks, forests, and backyards. Squirrels are members of the rodent family (rodentia), and they are the cleanest of all the rodents. Squirrels will move or build new nests when their nests become infested with fleas and other parasites. There may be more nests than there are squirrels, because of their nests becoming so infested with the fleas and parasites. The grey squirrel may have existed for 50 million years, as fossil records that were found have indicated. The grey squirrel has been very successful. They live in trees, but come down to the ground for food, and to gather food for the long winter months ahead, and to insure that they have enough food to last them through the cold winter months until spring. They are able to get salt from the soil near roads, where the snow and ice have melted.

The North American Grey Squirrel

The North American Grey Squirrel In Britain
The North American Grey Squirrel In Britain | Source

The American Grey Squirrel in Britain

The American Grey Squirrel was introduced in Great Britain in the mid 19th Century where they cause a considerable amount of damage to trees and to the red squirrel. They have had a devastating affect on the red squirrel.


Squirrels come from the (Sciuridae) family. Squirrels have large eyes, long nails and claws, and a large bushy tail. They have good eye sight. Their sweat glands are on their feet, and they also leave their scent on trees. Their front teeth keep growing, so squirrels constantly need to gnaw on hard surfaces, such as tree branches, other hard surfaces that they find, or even power lines, which can be quite dangerous. They have been known to cause power outages. Squirrels have soft, silky fur. Squirrels don't hibernate in the winter. Squirrels will share their nest in extreme cold temperatures to conserve heat, but when the temperature rises, the other squirrels must leave the nest. An adult squirrel normally lives in its own nest by itself. Squirrels have a brain that is about the size of a walnut. Squirrels make a chirping noise. Squirrels are wild animals and don't make good pets.

A Cute Video of Squirrels

What Squirrels Eat

Squirrels eat nuts, seeds, and fruit. Squirrels are well-known for eating and gathering nuts for the long, cold winter months that lie ahead. Squirrels will, also, eat other foods, such as insects, bird eggs, and dead animals when food is scarce. Squirrels save their food for the long winter, sort of like stocking up on supplies to insure their survival until the springtime arrives. Squirrels can be seen in parks coming down to the grounds from trees to search for food. Sometimes squirrels can be seen chasing each other. Squirrels can be fun to watch and they make good photography material. Squirrels can, also, be run over by automobiles and killed. Many squirrels get killed before their first birthday. Squirrels in the country, on the other hand, usually die from lack of food.

Squirrels usually build their nests in trees , but have been known to build nests in unusual places, such as house attics, or even crawl spaces. Squirrels can cause damage to the wiring in the home, which can cause fires. Squirrels may chew on electrical wiring, and can cause a short in the wiring, which can cause fires. Homes should be made squirrel proof, and the place should be sealed off where the squirrel is entering, after the squirrel exits to the outside. Squirrels can be trapped, and then let go; away from the home itself, so that it doesn't enter again. Squirrels should never be killed or poisoned.

Two Squirrels Fight


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    • gail641 profile image

      Gail Louise Stevenson 5 years ago from Mason City

      Squirrels are real cute and fun to watch. Squirrels sure are intelligent. Very interesting story. I've never seen squirrels open Maple seeds, but it sounds very interesting. Thanks for commenting.

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      Fiddleman 5 years ago

      Great hub and I love squirrels. Years ago I worked in a cotton mill as a machinist. His shop was on the end of the plant and there was a big window where we could watch the squirrels scurrying about playing. One year shortly after Christmas, he took the nuts he had gotten from the fruit bags at his church. such an assortment, pecans, English Walnuts, Hazelnuts, Almonds, and even some Brazil nuts. The squirrels knew they were all nuts! It always amazes me how God in His infinite wisdom and creation programs even squirrels on how to open and recognize something good to eat. My favorite is watching them eat Maple seeds, they open them just like I would the envelope of a letter.

    • gail641 profile image

      Gail Louise Stevenson 5 years ago from Mason City

      Thanks Eddy. I thought that squirrels would be very interesting and cute. I should try to find more photos of them. You have a great day, too.

    • Eiddwen profile image

      Eiddwen 5 years ago from Wales

      A wonderful hub; I love anything to do with nature/animals etc and this one was indeed a treat, have a great day.


    • gail641 profile image

      Gail Louise Stevenson 5 years ago from Mason City

      To billybuc: The grey squirrels may have been introduced in Great Britain, because Victorians liked the way the squirrel looked in the park, as a decoration--possibly. The Victorians didn't realize the grey squirrel could do a lot of damage. Its not quite certain why they introduced the grey squirrel. I looked it up in one place.

    • gail641 profile image

      Gail Louise Stevenson 5 years ago from Mason City

      I don't know how the grey squirrel got there, but it must of gotten there somehow. I'll have to look it up and see. There are a lot of squirrels. Thanks for commenting. Maybe some squirrels stowed away on some ships to get over to Great Britain. I wouldn't think that anyone would be taking squirrels over there.

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      We introduced it to Great Britain??? Now that's interesting; I didn't know that. Man, we sure do have a lot to them.

      Interesting hub; thanks for the education.