Things to Know About Florida Squirrels
Squirrels in Florida are as prevalent as orange trees, which make them a visible part of the Sunshine State’s wildlife landscape. Several squirrel species that call Florida home include the Eastern gray squirrel, Sherman’s Fox squirrel, and the Southern Flying squirrel. Another species, the Big Cypress Fox Squirrel, makes its home in and around the Everglades. It is an endangered species and protected by the State of Florida along with the Sherman’s Fox Squirrel.
You can identify the Eastern gray squirrel by its two-tone gray and brown fur with a contrasting paler color fur on the underside of their chest and stomach. Their tail is bushy and highlighted with silver-tipped fur. Size-wise, the Eastern squirrel can grow in length between 17 and 20 inches. The Eastern gray likes urban and wooded areas since most of their time in trees. They are active during the day in search of food and are often found on the ground looking for food or accessing food they’ve already stored away. Eastern gray squirrels may breed twice in one year and produce litters that range from one to four babies. Some of their favorite foods include acorns, various seeds such as sunflowers, bark, berries, and peanuts.
The Sherman’s Fox squirrel has multiple characteristics for identification. Their fur can be gray, buff, or black with lighter fur underneath. Their faces and feet are black, and ears and noses are white. Their long bushy tail is another visually distinctive feature. Fox squirrels have exceptionally strong hind legs making it easy for them to access areas by jumping and leaping. These squirrels like wooded areas, especially those with pine trees and cypress. They also like swampy areas. One of their favorite things to eat is pine seed.
The Southern Flying squirrel resides not only in Florida, but throughout the southeastern states. It can be identified by its silky gray-brown fur on the outer part of its body and the white fur lining its entire underbelly, and its large eyes. Its tail is flat versus the normal bushy trait of the other species. When the squirrel is in fly/glide mode, a piece of skin situated between its front and rear feet open creating a parachute effect allowing the squirrel to easily navigate between branches using its long, flat tail as a rudder. When it is ready to land, the squirrel also has the ability to slow down for an easier descent. Southern flying squirrels like forests and old trees as their habitat, especially those with cavities where they can build their nests.
Damage Caused by Squirrels
Squirrels are entertaining and interesting to observe, but these clever guests in your backyard can create damage to your home and pose a threat to your home’s inhabitants. Squirrels love to gnaw and chew. It is something they do nonstop to keep their teeth filed. The teeth can be used to bite you or a pet if either get too close and the squirrel feels threatened. If squirrels find a way into your home, the chewing will continue. This can be any wooden object such as wooden furniture and doors. They will gnaw electrical wiring, which could result in a house fire.
To control the squirrel population on your property, a professional service such as Capelouto Termite and Pest Control is the best option to ensure the problem is addressed completely and safely.
Capelouto – Service You Can Count On
When squirrels become a problem, give us a call. With our three-step process, we’ll thoroughly inspect your home and create an individualized plan of action, trap and remove existing squirrels, and make sure your home is secure from future squirrel invasions. Call today or use our handy online form to schedule an appointment.