This awwww-inducing picture above was sent to me by my Aussie Aunt over at Gentlestitches, courtesy of her son, in response to my post yesterday declaring this weekend National Squirrel Appreciation Weekend leading up to the official day on Monday. While the focus of the special day is to encourage people to appreciate their sciurine neighbors, let’s not forget that even squirrels should appreciate their fellow bushy-tailed friends! Some lucky squirrel girl has a thoughtful admirer with a fine taste in flowers!
On a tangent, I can’t help but think of a gift I got a couple years ago when I see that picture. A couple Springs ago, I was quite surprised to get this unexpected gift from the real-life Hottie:
Hottie found this wonderful real bone china squirrel at an estate sale, and just had to scoop it up and send it to me. After she had bought it, though, her boyfriend pointed out that he thought it was a chipmunk and not a squirrel since squirrels do not have stripes. After a little debate and some research, the two of them settled on the fact that it was actually a ground squirrel, and it turns out they were right! It is the golden-mantled ground squirrel! While they do not inhabit my neck of the woods, they are common in the western part of the United States. While they do closely resemble chipmunks (which are part of the squirrel sciuridae family anyway) it’s the lack of facial stripes is the key to telling them apart.
Since the squirrels in gentlestitches’ picture definitely resemble the squirrel in my figurine, then they must be golden mantled ground squirrels as well! It’s funny, because I didn’t even know there was such a thing as a ground squirrel until I got the gift from Hottie two years ago. I thought all squirrels were arboreal.
But squirrels are fun to learn about, and what better time than Squirrel Appreciation Weekend to become more educated on our closest link to real wildlife. Take some time to do a little research on squirrels… it will only help you to better be able to enjoy and appreciate the creatures in your backyard jungle!