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Common squirrel

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Description of common protein (Sciurus vulgaris). Such an animal as common squirrel (Sciurus vulgaris) or whale, has recently been a fairly popular species of mammals bred at home. It is as if created in order to decorate our nature, whether it be a dense forest, a city park or a living room corner.

Common squirrel

First, ordinary forest squirrel is beautiful in appearance. It has a proportionately folded body, a thick fiery brown and silver-fawn winter coat, dark tassels on the ears and a fluffy tail varying in color, black vibrant eyes. Combined, this gives the impression of complete grace.

Secondly, all poses and movements of the forest squirrel are uniquely light, dynamic and graceful - whether it climbs along the trunk of a tree, whether it jumps from top to top with lightning, or carefully bites a cone, clutching it with front legs.

The behavior of the animal, its constant activity, curiosity, credulity, instant transitions from one action to another is also interesting.

Where do squirrels live in Russia

Under the natural conditions of Russia, this rodent is found in the forest and forest-steppe zone. From the second half of the 20th century, forest squirrel began to populate gardens and parks of settlements, including large cities. The squirrel lives in hollows or spherical nests - the sinuses, which are externally made of coarse branches and lined with soft soaked bark from the inside. In the settlements is birdhouses and other artificial bird nests. Being a very smart animal, the squirrel will not even migrate to warmer regions from the place where it has plenty of food or where people feed it in the harsh winter. Unlike most other rodents, the squirrel is active only during the day, which is another very convenient prerequisite for keeping the animal at home.
Squirrel cage, squirrel house, feeding trough, running wheel

The habitat of the domestic squirrel should be spacious, bright and equipped with a closed house, where the animal could hide from everyone, a feeder, a drinking bowl and, preferably, a running wheel, so that the squirrel could spend its almost limitless energy reserves without harming itself and others. Recommended cell sizes - 120-150cm in all three dimensions. The approximate dimensions of the house for domestic squirrel are: height 50cm, length and width - 40cm each. The frame must be metal, covered on all sides with a metal mesh with 10-15 mm2 mesh. A gable roof made of tin is made above the cage. The attic serves as a resting place, where a circular hole leads. It is imperative to put a small log or a thick branch in the house so that the animal can conveniently and safely grind its sharp teeth, which, by the way, grow throughout its life. When cleaning, the hole in the nest is blocked by a shutter so that the squirrel does not jump out of the cage. However, a well-tamed and well-brought up animal can be let out for a while, but you should not leave it alone in the room, since it can bite furniture, carpets, etc. If you equip a squirrel house with a running wheel, it is ready to spin there for hours — this little rodent is so energetic and restless.
How to feed protein

How to feed the squirrel?

In nature, protein feeds on various plant foods: seeds of spruce, pine, berries and fruits, nuts, mushrooms, kidneys, shoots. Sometimes it eats insects, eggs and chicks of birds, small rodents and lizards. In captivity, squirrels are given walnuts, cedars, hazelnuts, peanuts, apples, pears (which can be replaced with ordinary dried fruits in winter), bananas, acorns, and tree buds. In addition, as far as possible, you can give sunflower seeds, pumpkins, cereals, dried mushrooms, cones of spruce and pine. It is good to periodically feed flour worms, fish or beef bones, so that calcium and phosphorus enter the animal. Water gives plenty, sometimes milk. Feed 2 times a day - in the morning and in the evening.

It is strictly forbidden to feed the protein with almonds, which contain substances that are deadly dangerous to the animal! It is also not recommended to diversify the nutrition of proteins with salty, sweet, smoked or fried foods.

Maintenance and care for common protein

Oddly enough, but the protein does not require very careful care. She does not need to bathe in the bath, blow dry, do the styling of the hair - she can do it herself perfectly when putting herself in order. The cage and the house require care: they need to be thoroughly cleaned 2-3 times a week, including from the food stocks hidden by the animal.

As a recommendation for caring for homemade squirrel, you can still give this advice: do not overfeed your pet. The energetic behavior of squirrels is largely due to the natural need to constantly be in a state of food search - this is the guarantee of health for squirrels and a guarantee of constant stay in tone.

How many squirrels live

The average lifespan of a protein in natural conditions is 3-3.5 years. At home, when the animal does not threaten to freeze from frost, he has plenty of food and is protected from predatory animals and birds, squirrels easily live up to 10-12 years. There are cases when squirrels survived in captivity until the age of 16, but this is more the exception than the rule.
Breeding protein, pregnancy and childbirth protein

In the wild in mid-latitudes, squirrels give two litters per year, from 2 to 12 cubs each. Pregnancy of a domestic squirrel lasts about 5 weeks, and immediately after giving birth, the female squirrel begins to fulfill its maternal duties, surrounding the squirrels with attention and care. At 2 weeks of age, the cubs begin to become covered with fur, at 4 weeks of age they begin to see, in the 40-day age they begin to look for food themselves, and in the 2-month-old they go on to independent life. They become sexually mature at 5 months. However, reproduction in captivity is possible only in case of good care and feeding of the animal.
Where to buy a squirrel

Where can squirrel be bought?

Selling squirrels, like other small mammals, is carried out in special nurseries for squirrels, in pet stores and in zoos. It is extremely rare that they appear in bird markets, but there is too much risk of acquiring a sick animal. If in your city there is no nursery for squirrels, then you can leave a request for the purchase of squirrels in a pet store - with a high degree of probability it will be completed. In cities where there are zoos, you can try to apply with his proposal for the purchase of protein to his administration.

03.01.2012

The common squirrel, or vechsa (lat. Sciurus vulgaris), belongs to the squirrel family (Sciuridae). In the ancient Russian language, this animal was called a believer. In Kievan Rus, it was an important article on replenishing the state treasury and foreign exchange reserves.

Middle Eastern merchants willingly bought squirrel skins, so enterprising hunters, waiting for the squirrel to shed its autumn molt, were happy to rush to its craft. Shedding of this rodent occurs twice a year, however, the tail and tassels on the ears molt only once a year.

During this period, her fur became light and was considered the most valuable, and the animal itself was called "bla vyveritsa", or for short, simply "bla". Over time, the animal-breadwinner began to be called affectionately squirrel or squirrel.

In Scandinavian mythology, the red-haired squirrel Ratatosk runs up and down the world tree Yggdrasil. She is busy with a very important matter, conveying swear words from the living below the snake Nidhegg sitting to the top in the form of an eagle, Yotun Hresvelgu and vice versa. While reptiles and birds scolding, relative harmony reigns in the world.

Sometimes the squirrel gets tired of her duties and begins to bite the world tree with anger, stimulating the rapid rebirth of the whole universe.

Spread

The habitat is in the Palearctic. It covers almost the whole of Europe and Asia from the Ural Mountains to the Pacific coast. The eastern border of the range passes through Kamchatka, northeast of China, the Korean Peninsula, the islands of Sakhalin and Hokkaido, and the northern border lies along the Arctic Circle.

On the European continent, ordinary squirrels are absent only in the south-east of England, the south-west of Spain, the south of Portugal and the southern part of Italy. There are many isolated populations on the Balkan Peninsula.

Rodents do not live on most of the Mediterranean islands. In Turkey, they are common in the European part and in the north-east of the country.

Animals settle at heights of up to 2000 m above sea level.

They inhabit mainly boreal coniferous forests. In Europe, these rodents are also found in oak groves, deciduous and mixed forests. Often they live in city parks and gardens.

To date, more than 40 subspecies have been described, differing mainly in the color of their fur. A nominative subspecies is common in Scandinavia.

Behavior

Outside of the breeding season, the common protein usually leads a solitary lifestyle. Sometimes small groups of several adults form, which use one nest for a shared overnight stay. Larger and older animals dominate inside, sex is of secondary importance.

Due to the abundance of parasites, squirrels are forced to regularly change their home. As temporary shelters, they often use the hollow of trees where woodpeckers previously nested.

Nests for sleep and rest are spherical structures located on the forks of branches at a height of more than 6 m. Their outer diameter is about 30-50 cm, and the inner one is 15-20 cm. They are built from twigs, leaves and needles, and from the inside they are insulated with mosses and dry grass.Construction takes from 3 to 5 days.

Thick waterproof walls provide good thermal insulation in severe frosts. The nest has two entrances. One of them is always located below.

In deciduous forests, ordinary squirrels arrange their homes in hollows, lining them with moss and grass, and in conifers make nests in the crowns of trees.

Quite often, they simply capture ready-made bird nests, expelling the previous owners. Usually, animals use several dwellings at the same time, trying to prevent an unexpected attack by martens and feathered predators. In city parks they are hunted by feral and domestic cats.

Activity is observed during daylight hours. The animals cleverly climb trees and jump. They effortlessly make jumps to a distance of 4-5 m. Rodents can go down the tree trunks upside down, turning their hind legs to the sides and back.

Veksha most often moves quickly forward, even on very thin branches. On the ground, it moves spasmodically, but does not ride like many four-legged animals. On solid ground, the animal feels insecure and, due to the slowness, often becomes easy prey for dogs and cats or falls under the wheels of passing vehicles.

Common squirrels become attached to their territory, but in case of lack of food they can migrate for tens of kilometers.

With a sufficient amount of feed, the area of ​​home plots is 3-10 hectares, and with a feedless feed it increases 3-4 times. The estates of several owners intersect. The borders of the occupied territory are marked by urine and secretions of aromatic glands located on the chin. On the islands, the land area is usually small and does not exceed 1-2 ha.

Nutrition

The diet depends on the time of year. The worst thing for centuries is in early spring, when the main food becomes the bark of trees and buds that have opened. Ordinary proteins practically do not absorb fiber and try to fool hunger with such food rather than get enough.

Contrary to popular belief, they primarily need protein rather than plant foods. They are happy to eat insects, bird eggs and little chicks.

In summer, the season of berries and fruits begins for them, in the autumn there is an opportunity to feast on the seeds of cones and nuts. Animals can scramble along the rough facades of houses, making their way to balconies and penetrating into living quarters, where they enjoy the found food supplies.

For winter, ordinary squirrels stock up by burying food in several places in their home area. They have a phenomenal memory and attention, never forget about the supplies made and regularly audit them.

In winter, due to weather conditions, rodents can not always get to stocks, which served as the basis for the myth of their poor memory. Some of the supplies are hidden in hollows, and mushrooms are dried on the branches of trees.

An ordinary protein eats up to 100 spruce cones or 50-90 g of feed per day. It reaches nutritious seeds in a matter of seconds, first making a small hole with the upper incisors, and then inserting the lower ones into it and using them as a lever. In the same way, the rodent breaks the shell of hard nuts. While eating, he holds his delicacy in his forepaws.

Breeding

Puberty occurs in the second year of life. The mating season begins in late January, and in severe frosts in February. Males find females ready for mating by smell and begin to chase them. Sometimes the persecution lasts for a couple of days. Sometimes several males chase one female at the same time.

Pregnancy lasts about 38 days. Under favorable conditions, the female produces offspring in early spring and mid-summer. In the litter there are from 3 to 6 cubs. Newborn squirrels weigh 8-10 g. They are naked, blind and deaf.

Eyes open by the end of the fourth week. At the same time, incisors begin to erupt. Belchata first emerge from the nest at the age of 6 weeks. Milk feeding ceases after 20-30 days, after which the cubs begin an independent search for food.

At the slightest danger, the mother grabs her offspring with her teeth and transfers her to a safer place.

They stay next to her for several months, and then disperse in different directions. 70-80% of the younger generation survive to one year of age.

Protein content in captivity

For one adult animal, an aviary or a vertical metal cage with a minimum volume of 60x80x150 cm is required. The cage should have a retractable tray to facilitate the cleaning process, and an attic where the nest will be located. Be sure to have a drinking bowl with clean drinking water.

Indoors, it is desirable to maintain the temperature within 15 ° -24 ° C. Overheating is dangerous to the health of the protein and often leads to their death.

At home, they are given forest, pine and walnuts, acorns, sunflower seeds, dry and fresh mushrooms, dried fruits. They love sweet berries, carrots, apples and pears, they are happy to gnaw cones of pines and firs with seeds that did not fly out. Occasionally, they should be given chalk, eggshells, and charcoal.

Young and nursing females are fed dairy products.

Rodents need minerals, so salt stones and chalk must be installed in the cage. Pets need sports equipment and toys to maintain vitality. Ladders, hammocks and a running wheel are ideal. To grind claws and teeth, you need to put a snag or strengthen the branch.

Description

Adults weigh from 200 g to 400 g. The body length is about 20-30 cm, and the tail is 15-21 cm. Sexual dimorphism in color and size is absent.

Fur protein in Central and Western Europe is colored in different shades of brown. Animals of the northern and eastern parts of Eurasia have a darker gray or almost black color.

Before winter, tufts of hair in the shape of tassels grow on the tips of the ears. The fluffy tail serves as a balance during jumping and climbing trees.

Sensitive vibrissae are located above the eyes and the tip of the nose, which serve for orientation in space. They are also on the cheeks and forelimbs.

Legs are short, 4 fingers on legs. Fingers are armed with sharp claws.

The average lifespan of common squirrel in the wild is about 3 years. In captivity, she lives up to 9-10 years.

Appearance

This is a small animal of a typical squirrel appearance, with an elongated slender body and a fluffy tail with a "comb". Her body is 19.5–28 cm long, her tail 13–19 cm long (about 2/3 of her body length), and her weight is 250–340 g. Her head is round, with large black eyes. The ears are long, with tassels, especially pronounced in winter. Sensitive vibrissae grow on the muzzle, forelegs and belly. The hind limbs are noticeably longer than the front. Fingers with tenacious sharp claws. The hair on the sides of the tail reaches a length of 3-6 cm, which makes the tail flattened.

The squirrel's winter fur is tall, soft, and fluffy, while the summer fur is harder, rarer, and shorter. In terms of color variability, protein holds one of the first places among the animals of the Palearctic. Its color changes seasonally, by subspecies and even within the same population. In summer, it is dominated by red, brown or dark brown tones, in winter it is gray and black, sometimes with a brown tint. Abdomen is light or white. There are melanist squirrels with completely black fur and albinos, as well as pied squirrels whose fur is covered with white spots. According to the winter color of the tail, the squirrels are divided into “Redtail”, “Browntail” and “Blacktail”. In the steppe forests of Western Siberia, gray-tailed squirrels are found.

The size of the squirrels decreases from mountainous to lowland, the size of the skull from south to north, and the color brightens towards the center of the range. Black and brown tones of winter fur in the Carpathian, Far Eastern and Manchurian subspecies are replaced by bluish and ash gray, most pronounced in teleutskin squirrels. At the same time, in the same direction, the area of ​​the white field of the abdomen increases and the percentage of "redtail" increases.

Molting

Squirrel molts 2 times a year, with the exception of the tail, which molts once a year. Spring molting occurs mainly in April-May, and autumn molting occurs from September to November. Shedding periods are highly dependent on the food and meteorological conditions of a given year. In the productive years, molting begins and ends earlier, in bad years it is much delayed and stretched. Spring molting goes from the head to the root of the tail, autumn - in the reverse order. Adult males begin to molt earlier than females and yearlings. Shedding in proteins, as in all other mammals, is caused by a change in the length of daylight hours, which affects the activity of the pituitary gland. The thyroid-stimulating hormone secreted by the pituitary gland affects the activity of the thyroid gland, under the action of the hormone of which molting occurs.

Squirrel in Russia

Common squirrel lives in all the forests of the European part of Russia, Siberia and the Far East. Around 1923-24 appeared in Kamchatka, where it is now common. In Russia, the fossil remains of squirrels have been known since the late Pleistocene.

The northern boundary of the distribution of squirrels coincides with the northern border of the tall forest: it begins in the north-west of Russia near the city of Kola, goes along the Kola Peninsula, then from the city of Mezen through Ust-Tsilma and Ust-Usa to the Northern Urals, from the Ural Range to the middle course R. Anadyr, and from there to the southwest along the shores of the Sea of ​​Okhotsk and the Sea of ​​Japan to Sakhalin and Korea. The southern border in the west roughly coincides with the southern border of the forest-steppe, but at the southern end of the Ural ridge sharply turns north to Shadrinsk, then goes through Omsk and northern Kazakhstan (Pavlodar, Semipalatinsk) to southern Altai. The rest of the southern range belongs to Mongolia, northeast China, Korea, and Japan. Since the late 1930s. The squirrel has repeatedly settled in the mountains of the Caucasus, Crimea and the Tien Shan, in the island forests of Central Kazakhstan, as well as in the Mogilev, Bryansk and Rostov regions.

In Russia, the following subspecies of the common squirrel are common:

  • North European Squirrel, S. v. varius Brisson, 1899. In winter, a light bluish-gray color with a brown tail is usual. Many red-tailed (up to 30%) and red-eared specimens. Distribution: Kola Peninsula, Karelia.
  • Squirrel Formozova, S. v. formosovi Ognev, 1935. Winter fur is pure gray, back with dark gray ripples. Common shoals. Distribution: northeast of the European part of Russia south to Novgorod and Perm, the basins of the Northern Dvina and Pechora.
  • Central Russian squirrel, (veksha) S. v. ognevi Migulin, 1928. The color of winter fur from gray with an admixture of fawn tones (fir trees) to ash gray (pine trees), summer - from brown-brown to ocher-rust. Redtail not less than 25-30%. Distribution: in the north - to Novgorod, in the west - to Pskov, Velikiye Luki, Torzhok, Vyazma and Kaluga, to the south - to Tula, Penza, Syzran, Yelabuga, in the east - along the river. Kama to Perm.
  • Squirrel Fedyushina, S. v. fedjuschini Ognev, 1935. The fur is coarser than that of the Central Russian squirrel, the winter color is darker and more dirty, brown. Distribution: northern Belarus and the western regions of Russia, north to Velikiye Luki, east to the line between Smolensk, Vyazma and Roslavl.
  • Ukrainian squirrel, S. v. ukrainicus Migulin, 1928. It differs from the Central Russian squirrel in its larger size and the predominance of brown-rusty tones in winter fur. Redtail up to 70%. Distribution: the north of Ukraine (Poltava and Kharkov regions) and the adjacent regions of Russia (Smolensk and Voronezh regions).
  • Bashkir Squirrel, S. v. bashkiricus Ognev, 1935. Winter fur is light, from fawn gray to bluish-gray with gray ripples, summer - buffy-reddish-gray. Distribution: Orenburg region, Bashkortostan, the Middle and partly the Northern Urals.
  • Tele-Squirrel S. v. exalbidus Pallas, 1778. The largest subspecies with very thick fur. Winter fur is very light, silver-gray with a grayish ripple, the tail is pale gray with an admixture of blackish and yellowish-rusty tones. The prey are predominant, the tailed tails are absent. Distribution: ribbon pine forests along the Irtysh and Ob rivers to the north to Novosibirsk. Acclimatized in the Crimea and in the island forests of Northern Kazakhstan, it has been repeatedly released in the pine forests of Central Russia and Lithuania.
  • West Siberian Squirrel, S. v. martensi Matschie, 1901. Winter fur is light, fawn with faint grayish ripples. Shoals and tails predominate, red tails about 3%. Distribution: Central Siberia - from the lower and middle Ob region east to the Yenisei, south to Tomsk and Novosibirsk.
  • Yenisei Squirrel, S. v. jenissejensis Ognev, 1935. The color is very variable. In winter, bluish-ash-gray with fine dark gray ripples prevails, the tail is reddish-rusty, mixed with black tones. Summer fur is from reddish-buffy to black-brown. Distribution: the left bank of the Yenisei, approximately from the line Krasnoyarsk - Irkutsk to the north to the watershed of the Yenisei and Lena.
  • Yakut squirrel, S. v. jacutensis Ognev, 1929. Winter fur is painted in intense gray tones. Distribution: mountainous areas between the upper reaches of the Lena, Vitim and Aldan, the middle part of Yakutia, the basin of the upper and middle Anadyr. Apparently, this subspecies populated Kamchatka.
  • Anadyr Squirrel, S. v. anadyrensis Ognev, 1929. It differs from the Yakut squirrel in a greater admixture of a dull, brownish-gray shade in winter fur. Distribution: Anadyr Peninsula.
  • Altai Squirrel, S. v. altaicus Serebrennikov, 1928. It looks like the Yenisei squirrel, but is painted brighter. In summer, black and black-brown individuals predominate. Distribution: mountains and foothills of Altai, Sayan and Tarbagatai. Acclimatized in the Caucasus.
  • Kalbin squirrel, S. v. kalblnensis Selevin, 1934. Similar to a teleutk, but somewhat darker in winter fur. The tail is bright red, less often brown. Distribution: pine forests of the southern slope of the Kalba Range (Altai).
  • Transbaikal squirrel, S. v. fusconigricans Dvigubsky, 1804. Winter fur of a dark gray tone, with gray-black ripples, in the summer black-backed or black-brown-backed animals predominate. Distribution: Transbaikalia, Northern Mongolia.
  • Manchurian Squirrel, S. v. mantchuricus Thomas, 1909. Its color is close to the Transbaikal squirrel, but generally lighter. Most squirrels are blacktail and shrewtail. Distribution: southern Primorye, Khabarovsk Territory, as well as northeastern China, in the north reaches 48–49 ° C. w.
  • Sakhalin Squirrel, S. v. rupestris Thomas, 1907. Close to the Manchu squirrel, but smaller and with more fluffy fur. Blacktail predominate. Distribution: Sakhalin, Shantar Islands, Amur Region, the southern part of the Khabarovsk Territory.

In general, squirrels inhabiting the European part of Russia and Western Siberia have a red color in summer fur, and brown or almost black in animals from Eastern Siberia and the Far East. In winter, the color of the first squirrels is dominated by gray and silver tones with brown hues, and the ridge often remains red (humpback). The second in the winter color is dominated by dark brown and dark gray tones.

Lifestyle & Nutrition

Squirrel is a typical inhabitant of forests. Since the basis of her nutrition is made up of seeds of tree species, she prefers mixed coniferous-deciduous forests that provide the best forage conditions. He also loves mature dark coniferous plantations - cedar forests, spruce forests, fir trees, followed by larch forests, cedar dwarf thickets and mixed pine trees. In the north, where mostly pine and larch woodlands grow, its population density is low. In the Crimea and the Caucasus, she mastered cultural landscapes: orchards and vineyards.

The lifestyle is mostly woody. Squirrel is a lively, mobile animal. She easily jumps from tree to tree (3-4 m in a straight line and 10-15 m in a downward curve), “steering” with her tail. In the snowless period, as well as during the rut, he spends considerable time on the ground, where he moves irregularly up to 1 m long. In the winter period he moves mainly “on horseback”. When in danger, it hides in trees, usually hiding in a crown. Active in the morning and evening hours, from 60% to 80% of this time spending in search of food.At the height of winter, it leaves the nest only during feeding, and in severe frosts and bad weather it hides in the nest, falling into a half-dormant state. Not territorial, individual sites are weakly expressed, overlap.

Nest

Shelter ordinary squirrel arranges only on trees. In deciduous forests, he usually lives in hollows, dragging soft bedding of grass, wood lichens, and dry leaves there. In conifers, it builds spherical nests from dry branches (guyna), which is lined with moss, leaves, grass, wool from the inside. The diameter of the nest is 25-30 cm, it is located in a fork in the branches or among thick branches at a height of 7-15 m. The squirrel also willingly occupies birdhouses. Males usually do not build nests, but occupy empty nests of females or blackbirds, forty, ravens. As a rule, each animal has several nests (up to 15), and every 2-3 days the squirrel changes its shelter, obviously, fleeing parasites. The female carries the cubs in the teeth. In winter, 3–6 squirrels can winter in one nest, although these are usually solitary animals.

Migrations

Large migrations (migrations) of squirrels are mentioned in ancient Russian chronicles. Sometimes they are caused by drought and forest fires, but more often they fail to harvest the main feed - seeds of conifers and nuts. Migrations occur in late summer and early fall. Most often, squirrels migrate close to another forest, but sometimes they make long and long migrations - up to 250-300 km. The nomadic squirrel goes along a wide front (sometimes 100-300 km) one by one, without forming significant flocks and clusters, except for natural obstacles. During migrations it enters the forest-tundra and tundra, appears in the steppe regions, crosses rivers and even sea gulfs, penetrates islands, crosses the bare peaks of mountains, even enters settlements. At the same time, animals in many drown, die from hunger, cold and predators.

In addition to mass migrations, the squirrel is characterized by seasonal migrations associated with the consistent maturation of feed and the transition of young animals to an independent lifestyle. Young growth settles in August – September and in October – November, sometimes 70–350 km away from the nesting stations. With a nourishment, seasonal migrations can go into migration. At the same time, part of the adult individuals remains in place, with the usual food, they switch to eating low-calorie foods with a high fiber content (kidneys, lichens, needles, bark of young shoots). It is due to this group that the local population is then restored.

Life span

In captivity, proteins survive to 10-12 years, but in nature, a protein older than 4 years is already old. The share of such animals under the most favorable conditions does not exceed 10%. In areas with intense squirrel fisheries, the population is completely renewed in 3-4 years. The mortality rate of young animals is especially high - 75–85% of squirrels do not survive their first winter.

The enemies of the squirrel are owls, goshawk, pine marten in the European part of Russia, sable in the Asian part and harza in the Far East. On the ground they are caught by foxes and cats. However, predators do not significantly affect the state of populations. Much more strongly on the abundance of protein affects feedlessness and epizootics. Epizootics usually occur in late autumn and most develop in the spring. Proteins die from coccidiosis, tularemia, hemorrhagic septicemia, they usually have worms, ticks and fleas.

Number

This is a common species over most of the range. The number grows south and east of the range: if in the Moscow Region the population density is 20–90 sv / 1000 ha, then in Eastern Siberia it fluctuates within 80–300 sv / 1000 ha. It also depends on the habitat of the population, reaching the largest number in cedar forests - 400-500 stars / 1000 ha.

The number of proteins is subject to strong fluctuations depending on the yield of the main feed. If after the harvest year a real explosion of fertility follows (up to 400%), then after the hungry years it is reduced by tens of times. Increases and decreases in numbers are usually observed one year after harvest or crop failure.

In Great Britain and Ireland, the abundance of common squirrel was strongly influenced by the acclimatization of gray squirrel (Sciurus carolinensis) The North American protein has practically replaced the indigenous one, in particular, since it is a carrier of a dangerous parapoxivirus, without illness itself. In the Caucasus, the opposite situation is observed - here, the imported red squirrel replaced the local Persian squirrel from coniferous forests.

Industrial value

Squirrel is a valuable fur animal, one of the main objects of fur trade in Russia. It is obtained mainly in the taiga zone of the European part, the Urals and Siberia. The bulk of the protein comes from Siberia, Yakutia and the Far East. In the days of the Soviet Union, this animal was second only to sable in terms of the number of blanks, but nowadays the reception of skins has practically reduced to zero. In 2009, at the main Russian fur auctions, she was not put up for auction.

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