Black Squirrel at Young Naturalist J‘s House
This Black Squirrel is really a black phase of the Eastern Gray Squirrel (Sciurus carolinensis). Typically we find these guys in the gray/redish phase but on occasion we find the black phase running around. There has been a black phase pair around the 4 corners of Red House Lake for many years now but I have never been able to get a decent photo of them. 😦
They feed mainly on seeds like beech-nuts and acorns but have been known to eat bird nestlings from the nest they locate. They are also opportunist in eating insects whenever they find anything available to them and can be regularly found gorging on sunflower seeds at peoples bird feeders. A few years ago I had found this unusual black phased squirrel with a redish tail looking for some fallen sunflowers. It quickly became my “favorite” squirrel but this cute squirrel stayed in the area for about one week’s time. I think some of the local squirrels had chased it away since I had been giving it all my attention!
Sometimes these squirrels are disliked by us birders but I still enjoy watching scurry around the forest! Do you encourage them at your feeder or do you discourage them? I personally try to discourage them by using a Squirrel proof feeder . . . . well except this Black/Redish tailed Squirrel (I left seeds on the ground or him)!!
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