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Flying Squirrels


The first things you need to know about Flying Squirrels:

Have you ever wondered how a flying squirrel flies, it doesn't have wings, it's not a bird, so how can it fly?

Well, the truth is, it doesn't fly, it glides, sort of like an eagle except it never has to flap any wings.

There are blanket-like membranes of skin between its wrists and hindlegs that give it the ability to glide far distances.


Flying Squirrel

The flying squirrels have dense, and soft fur. It's brown on their backs and white underneath.

They have long, flattened tails that are used to guide their glides. They have large eyes, or "bug eyes", I like to call them.

Flying squirrels are nocturnal rodents, which means they feed at night on fruits, nuts, buds, and insects.

They nest in hollow trees, deserted buildings, and birdhouses. These gregarious mammals seldom descend to the ground.

Different species:

There are many different species of flying squirrels, like the eastern Flying Squirrels and the Giant Flying Squirrels of Asia, who can glide as far as almost 1,500 feet (450 km)! The scaly-tailed species of Africa are not considered true flying squirrels. (They have membranes that connect to their elbows instead of their wrists, but look like true flying squirrels besides their short, tuft tails.)

Scientific Classification:

Flying squirrels make up the subfamily, Patauristinae of the family Sciuridae. Eastern Flying Squirrels are classified as Glaucomys Volcans. The Scaly-Tailed Flying Squirrels of Africa are in the family, Anomaluridae.

One Last thing:

Now that you know about flying squirrels, what they look like, how they fly, the different species, and the scientific classification, work on keeping them alive. They may not be endangered yet, but at the rate we're going, they're sure to be endangered someday. These animals, like all animals, have the right to live, especially since they were here first.

Bibliography: Encarta96 Encyclopedia



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