Also known as the Beechey ground squirrel, after Frederick William Beechey, the California ground squirrel is a very common sight throughout most of California. These ground squirrels are found everywhere from central Washington through western Oregon, California, and even into the northern part of Baja California. These cute little critters live in small meadows, plains, hillsides that are tree covered, & rocky outcrops.
First the Stats…
Scientific name: Otospermophilus beecheyi
Weight: Up to 1.3 lbs
Length: Up to 12 inches (plus their 5 -7 inch long tail)
Lifespan: Up to 6 years
Now on to the Facts!
1.) Ground squirrels feast on insects, eggs, roots, tubers, grains, seeds, nuts, and fruit.
2.) Like other squirrels, they will store caches of food for the lean winter months.
3.) Since they like to gather more food than they can possibly carry, they make good use of cheek pouches while they are foraging.
4.) Cali. squirrels dig elaborate burrows that house several generations. What’s cool is that each individual has its own entrance.
5.) California ground squirrels communicate via tail signals, chirps, and scent marking.
But wait, there’s more on the California ground squirrel!
6.) If threatened, these little critters let out a high-pitched call that can last for minutes!
Did you know…?
Males can be aggressive. Well, as aggressive as a squirrel can be anyway.
8.) Mating season is in early spring and tends to last for just a few weeks.