Southern Flying Squirrels are found in the eastern half of North America, Florida
and from southeastern Canada.
Length:The total length is about 25-37 cm. They have big eyes and their tail
is almost flat.
Fur Coat & Color:Their fur color is light brown or cinnamon
fur on their upper body and greyish on the flanks and white color underneath.
Nest:Nests are made up of grass in the branches of spruce trees
Or cavities in the trunks of poplar, spruce and walnut trees. Each individual squirrel
builds and has available several nests within its territory and females with young
offspring move between different nesting sites. more
Southern Flying Squirrels do not actually fly, they actually glide using a membrane
called a patagium. This is made up of a fold of skin which starts at the wrists
of the forearms and it extends along the sides of the body
When they glide, they make an "X" like shape with their limbs. They spread
their arms and legs forward and out. At this time their membrane gets stretch into
a rectangle-like shape.
They glide with the degree of 30-40. They have capability to make 90 degree turn
if they find some object while gliding.
While landing, they raise their tail which creates parachute like effect.
They make a nest and live in the holes of the trees. They also build leaf nests
outside called dreys and will also nest underground. While raising young ones, the
squirrels shift from nest to nest frequently. They often share nests during winter
months. The shared nests contain 4 to 10 individuals. The sharing of nests in winter
by Southern flying squirrels is important in order to maintain body temperature.
The Southern flying squirrels do not hibernate.
Average home range of southern flying squirrels are 2.45 hectares. 9.0 hectares
and 16.0 hectares are for adult males. 1.95 hectares, 3.9 hectares and 7.2 hectares
are for adult females. 0.61 hectares for juveniles. Home range is larger in males
than females possibly to increase the chance of encountering potential mates. Although
males have a larger home range, female home ranges have been shown to increase by
as much as 70 percent following the departure of the offspring.
[Southern Flying Squirrel]
[Southern Flying Squirrel Habitat]
Southern Flying squirrels eat variety of food such as tree bark, berries, many types
of seeds and acorns, walnuts, and other nuts, and some types of fungi found in the
forests, including fly agaric mushrooms.
Southern Flying squirrels will also prey upon insects, frogs, small rodents including
other squirrels, and small birds, their eggs and young. They are also known to cache
food. They make caches in the cavities of the trees and nests. Seeds and Lichens
are usually cached.
When do they Breed: twice a year, December to February and May
How many youngs/Baby are born: 2 to 8 litter per year
Gestation Period: Around 40 days
Mother Care: The baby squirrels are taken care of by Female Squirrels
for Seven weeks and they they leave the nest after 67 days.
Age when they can breed: 120 days
Age: 20 years in Zoos and 12.5 years in Wild.