Northern Flying Squirrel
In North America, there are two species of flying squirrels. Glaucomys sabrina (northern) and Glaucomys volans (southern) inhabit forested land ranging from Alaska to Mexico and even parts of Central America. There is considerable overlap between the southern and northern range limits or each type and both can be found in most of New England. Unlike grey squirrels, flying squirrels are much smaller and are active at night. They average about 11 inches (body with tail) in length and weigh up to 5 oz. They have large eyes, and grey, reddish brown fur with a grayish white underbelly featuring unique folding skin that stretches between the front and hind legs, and a flattened tail (The southern type is similar but slightly smaller.) So why are they called flying squirrels and how exactly do they “fly”? They fly by stretching out that loosely folded skin (sort of like having their own built in magic carpet!) and gliding between trees tops. They are very agile, efficient gliders able to change direction at will and can easily propel themselves well beyond 100 feet! Their diet consists mainly of nuts, seeds, and lichens but they’re known to also feed on insects and sometimes nestling birds. Flying squirrels are active all year long and typically seek out natural cavities in trees (abandoned woodpecker nests are a favorite) for nesting and raising young. Especially during the winter months, they’ll live communally to conserve warmth. Unfortunately for many property owners, this cavity nesting habit transfers very well to homes with squirrels invading dormers, eaves, and other areas with small openings. If you suspect that your home is now home for a family of squirrels, please contact our office for safe, effective, wildlife removal and exclusion services.