Wednesday, January 1, 2014

COMMON SCENTS

(apologies for the poor focus)
Our male piebald Eastern Fox Squirrel is back with us for the beginning of the new year and is always a welcome sight. I stopped for a few minutes and watched what he doing and realized that food was not high on his priority list even though he would have been wise to consume some calories before the next cold wave hits the area.  Female Fox Squirrels come into estrus from mid December to early January which changes the priority of the area males during this time of the year. Males communicate their presence by marking the tree branches of their territory with urine and the scent produced by the scent glands near their nose. This squirrel marked several branches by grasping the branch with front feet and rubbing his nose on the branches of about 3 different trees.

The piebald was also checking the branches for the scent of other males and females and has found a deposit
of squirrel scat he is sniffing to determine what other squirrels are in the area.