Squirrel babies are rarely seen by people in nature, and that’s actually a good thing since if you do come across one, chances are it somehow got separated from its nest and is likely helpless and in danger. By the time squirrels begin to adventure outside their arboreal home at around 10 weeks of age, they’ve already taken on most of the traits of an adult squirrel and are hard to differentiate from their elders. But there are times where you can look at a squirrel and tell it’s a youngin’ due to its smaller and rawer features. My pretty friend Foxy, who’s either lost his colorful tail to the maturation process or has merely disappeared from my neighborhood, was clearly an adolescent squirrel. I thought he was the only clear cut case of a sciurine rugrat I had ever seen before…. until I scoured the photos I took at the local park in June and noticed this photo.
It’s pretty easy to tell that’s no full sized grown up squirrel. The small body in proportion to the legs along with the shorter, stubbier tail are clear indications this little fella’s still got some growing to do. I’d guess he may be 3 or 4 months old here, which means he’s still a long ways away from his first birthday. Life expectancy for squirrels in the wild isn’t exactly encouraging news, but the odds are since this kid’s a park squirrel, he stands a better chance of living a reasonably long and healthy life of 5-7 years. Hopefully, there is a lot of frollicking, fun, and adventure to come in this fuzzy lad’s life, and we wish him well while saluting the joy and beauty of youth in this week’s Saturday Squirrel!
Have a young at heart weekend everyone!