Squirrel #3 - Nibbling by imprezoid

Squirrel #3 - Nibbling

This is a photo of a red squirrel, taken at the British Wildlife Centre (www.britishwildlifecentre.co.uk).

Concentrating while eating a nut, he's very content to be a model :-)

The red squirrel is found in both coniferous forest and temperate broadleaf woodlands. The squirrel makes a drey (nest) out of twigs in a branch-fork, forming a domed structure about 25 to 30 cm in diameter. This is lined with moss, leaves, grass and bark. Tree hollows and woodpecker holes are also used.

The red squirrel is a solitary animal and is shy and reluctant to share food with others. However, outside the breeding season and particularly in winter, several red squirrels may share a drey to keep warm.

Social organization is based on dominance hierarchies within and between sexes; although males are not necessarily dominant to females, the dominant animals tend to be larger and older than subordinate animals, and dominant males tend to have larger home ranges than subordinate males or females.

The red squirrel eats mostly the seeds of trees, neatly stripping conifer cones to get at the seeds within.[citation needed] Fungi, nuts (especially hazelnuts but also beech and chestnuts), berries, young shoots, and bird eggs are occasionally eaten. Often the bark of trees is removed to allow access to sap.

Between 60% and 80% of its active period may be spent foraging and feeding. Excess food is put into caches, either buried or in nooks or holes in trees, and eaten when food is scarce. Although the red squirrel remembers where it created caches at a better-than-chance level, its spatial memory is substantially less accurate and durable than that of grey squirrel; it therefore will often have to search for them when in need, and many caches are never found again. No territories are maintained, and the feeding areas of individuals overlap considerably.

The active period for the red squirrel is in the morning and in the late afternoon and evening. It often rests in its nest in the middle of the day, avoiding the heat and the high visibility to birds of prey that are dangers during these hours. During the winter, this mid-day rest is often much more brief, or absent entirely, although harsh weather may cause the animal to stay in its nest for days at a time.
Love this little red squirrels. Excellent clarity and color. Well done.
June 7th, 2012  
I love his hairdo. Excellent closeup.
June 7th, 2012  
Lovely capture.
June 7th, 2012  
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