The flying squirrel doesn't actually fly as the name would lead you to believe. Instead, it's more of a gliding animal, using a thin membrane that stretches between their limbs, and a tail that they use a mid-air rudder, of sorts. These creatures are said to have originated some 18 to 20 million years ago, and for the most part, are nocturnal creatures. They have a diet that is considered omnivorous - the same as us humans. They eat both meat and plant products, including tree sap, fungi, bird's eggs, spiders and gastropods, insects, flowers, seeds, buds, fruits, and more. When born, they still with their mother for about ten weeks. That's when they are considered ready to leave the nest, after learning the gliding skill from about five weeks onwards. They can live up to 15 years old in great conditions, but generally only live to around six years of age, and they are often hunted down by snakes, owls, raccoons, and other creatures. They generally mate in February and March time, and can be particularly difficult to find and identify. They are shy animals.
These are among the many species of squirrels and just like the rest they feed on seeds and flesh from time to time. They can be classified into two broad categories that is the northern and the southern species. One can use the size to differentiate the two since the southern appears smaller. Northern may be twice as big but they have a lot of things in common.
When it comes to southern kind of species they can live anywhere and are not as choose as their northern counterparts who depend on cone-bearing trees to get food. One other way a person can distinguish the two species that have a lot in common is in terms of colors. Northern have dull fur mainly blackish or brownish whereas the southern is grey in color.
The interesting things about these creature is despite being called flying squirrels they do not fly. Their movement is enabled by gliding through the air meaning they jump from tree to tree. They move to the top most part of the tree so that they can jump to the next. They can grow to be about twelve inches long. Males and females look alike.
These are the only species of squirrels that can be said to be super active at night because their eyes are more adapted to seeing during dark days. Gestation periods in these animals is forty days and up to seven babies can be born depending. Their life cycle depends on where they wind up. They are well taken care of in the zoo thus can live for up to fifteen years.
However in the wild life can be difficult and different for them therefore it is approximated that they live for about six years. Here they are prone to diseases and wild animals that are out to hunt them thus reducing their life span. How long they live depends on what they eat. Just like any other species they feed on plants and meat from snails or any other animal that will not put up a fight.
They are not hunters but can still be categorized as omnivorous. They feed on seeds and still go hunting for eggs and birds. Since they jump from one tree to the next finding some fresh meet or foods rich in proteins is easier for them unlike any other species. They will mainly be found in the woods as long as the trees they live in are coniferous in type.
They are known to be the smallest species and are easy to tame compared to other types. People used to keep them long time ago as pets so if you want to tame one make sure you have a permit. Due to their sociable behavior it is easy for them and humans to get along well. They are known to be secretive but at the same time protective of their own.
For a long time human beings have sort of wanted to be like these creatures that is the reason why man invented skydiving and movies like jumper came into being created. The suits created have helped man to move through the air and develop jumping abilities similar to the animal. When it comes top living together these animals just understand the importance of helping each other.
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