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Eastern Gray Squirrel Sciurus carolinensis

Track Foreprints round, 1" (2527 mm) long; hindprints more triangular, 2 1/4" (5658 mm) long. When bounding, paired hindprints are slightly ahead of paired foreprints; sometimes foreprints are between rear parts of hindprints, often directly behind them, leaving tracks like exclamation points (!!); bounding stride ranges from a few inches to over 3' (900 mm). On snow, foreprints 1 1/21 3/4" (3746 mm) long, hindprints nearly 3" (7577 mm) long, with claws usually showing. On mud or soft ground, hindprints shorter and rounder because entire pad does not always print, and long toes may print more distinctly. (Rabbit tracks are similar but longer, and foreprints are not paired.)

Sign Gnawed acorn husks or other nutshells, especially hickory, walnut, beechnut, or pecan, littering the ground. Nuts show large ragged edged hole or are crushed. Corncobs with only germ end of kernels eaten. In winter and spring, ragged little holes in snow or earth where squirrels have dug up nut caches. Gnawings on tree trunks and limbs, similar to porcupine's but with smaller tooth marks and no droppings below.
Nest: Placed in a hollow tree or a loose, ball-shaped nest of leaves in high tree crotches or limbs (obvious in winter in bare branches); in summer, "cooling beds" or "loafing platforms" (flatter, smaller leaf nests without cavity).
Scat: Small, dark, and oval; seldom conspicuous.

 

 

 

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