By Warner Shedd
Have you noticeable a flying squirrel flapping during the air, watched a beaver wearing a load of dust on its tail, or ducked while a porcupine begun throwing its quills? not really, says Warner Shedd, debunking those and lots of extra well known myths approximately our animal acquaintances in Owls are usually not clever & Bats are not Blind. during this fascinating and eminently readable biology lesson, Warner Shedd, former local govt for the nationwide natural world Federation, bargains clinical proof that refutes the various most far sighted and persevering folklore approximately wild animals. jam-packed with funny anecdotes and interesting proof approximately greater than thirty North American species, Owls should not clever & Bats aren't Blind is an interesting dose of clinical fact for any nature fanatic or armchair adventurer.
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Extra info for Owls Aren't Wise and Bats Aren't Blind_ A Naturalist Debunks Our Favorite Fallacies About Wildlife
Flying squirrels are active only at night. ALTHOUGH THEY’RE COMMON ENOUGH IN MANY FORESTED AREAS, THESE LITTLE CREATURES ARE SEEN SO SELDOM THAT THEY MIGHT ALMOST BE CONSIDERED WOODLAND GHOSTS. At night, perhaps, car headlights may for a fleeting second reveal what looks like a large, square leaf passing overhead, leaving the occupants wondering exactly what it was that they saw. More than likely, they glimpsed a flying squirrel—possibly the only view they would ever have of one, outside a museum or zoo.
But although consumption of road salt may benefit the porcupine’s health, the interaction between porcupines and automobiles that often results definitely does not—and many are the porkies that end up as roadkill because of it! Although the inner bark of trees may be the porcupine’s dietary staple in winter, these big rodents consume a surprising variety of foods during the warmer months. Grasses, clover, buds, succulent water plants, apples and other fruit, and a number of herbaceous plants, acorns, and raspberry shoots, among others, are all grist for the porky’s mill.
As in the case of birds, this process is known as molting. Oddly enough, the tail in both species molts only once, in the middle of summer. Considering how often these two squirrels can be found in the same sections of woodland, it’s worthwhile—and quite fascinating—to see how different their lives are in many respects. Food requirements and feeding habits are as good a place as any to start. In simplest terms, gray squirrels depend on nuts as their most essential food supply; historically, wherever nuts—acorns, hickories, beechnuts, butternuts, and black walnuts—are abundant, so are gray squirrels.