Mexican Gray Squirrel

Mexican Gray Squirrel

Red-bellied squirrel

Kingdom
Phylum
Subphylum
Class
Order
Family
Genus
SPECIES
Sciurus aureogaster
Population size
Unknown
Life Span
6 yrs
WEIGHT
375-680 g
LENGTH
232-310 mm

The Mexican gray squirrel is a species of a tree squirrel. The fur of these squirrels is gray in color combined with a bright rufous belly. Their coloration may vary depending on location. It can be gray on the upper parts and white to orange or to deep chestnut on the under parts.

Distibution

Mexican gray squirrels are native to Guatemala and eastern and southern Mexico. They have been introduced to the Florida Keys. These squirrels inhabit forested habitats including deciduous and evergreen forest, dry pine-oak woodland, secondary forest, thorn scrub, and plantations. They are most common in dry woodlands or forest, especially in those that border with agricultural areas. They also live in urban areas.

Mexican Gray Squirrel habitat map

Geography

Continents
Subcontinents
Countries

Climate zones

Habits and Lifestyle

Mexican gray squirrels are diurnal and generally solitary creatures. They are mainly arboreal but come to the ground to feed or travel from tree to tree. In Mexico, however, these squirrels are known to use the forest floor year round, especially during the dry season. Mexican gray squirrels make leaf nests which they build on tree branches around 5-15 m above ground. They are territorial animals; home ranges of females are smaller than those of the males. When threatend Mexican gray squirells become agressive. They bark and move their tails forward and backward rapidly. In order to communicate with each other they produce four different vocalizations: the call of fear, call of danger, mating call and the squeal of death.

Seasonal behavior

Diet and Nutrition

Mexican gray squirrels are mainly frugivorous. In the lowlands, they consume seeds and fruits. Acorns and pine nuts are prefferred by the highland populations. In Mexico, they eat seeds of pines, oaks, and dogwoods. In general, the diet of Mexican gray squirrels consists of mangos, green figs, jumbo plums, tamarind pods, chico zapote, and corn.

Mating Habits

REPRODUCTION SEASON
year-round
BABY CARRYING
2-4 kittens
FEMALE NAME
doe
MALE NAME
buck
BABY NAME
pup, kit, kitten

Little is known about the mating system and reproductive behavior of Mexican gray squirrels. They breed year round and females give birth to 2-4 young during a dry season.

Population

Population threats

There are no major threats to Mexican gray squirrels at present. However, in some regions, they are hunted for food or as pests as they cause damage to corn and other crops.

Population number

The IUCN Red List and other sources do not provide the Mexican gray squirrel total population size. This animal is common throughout its known range. Currently, this species is classified as Least Concern (LC) on the IUCN Red List and its numbers today remain stable.

References

1. Mexican Gray Squirrel on Wikipedia - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mexican_gray_squirrel
2. Mexican Gray Squirrel on The IUCN Red List site - https://www.iucnredlist.org/species/20006/22248035

More Fascinating Animals to Learn About