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Old 28 December 2006, 04:51 AM
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Mouse Black squirrels

Comment: A story I wonder about:

Here in Washington, DC, there are many black-furred squirrels, in contrast
to the gray squirrel one is accustomed to seeing on the Eastern seaboard.
The story goes that some scientist gave a pair of squirrels to the
President of the U.S. some time ago -- at least a century or so -- and
they have multiplied and spread throughout the region since then. Sounds
far-fetched to me.
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  #2  
Old 28 December 2006, 05:17 AM
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It's almost true. The black squirrels arrived on the Mayflower along with James Monroe and never left the area around Washington Harbor.
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Old 28 December 2006, 04:44 PM
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I didn't know there were black squirrels in DC. I grew up in Kent, OH, and there are black squirrels there (now migrating into the surrounding areas). I miss them, and I really miss the interesting multi-colored squirrels that occasionally result from their breeding with the gray ones. There was one in my parents' yard years ago that my dad called "the ring-tail squirrel," because its tail had patches of black and gray that looked like rings from a distance.

There are albino squirrels in my current neigbhorhood. Black squirrels are the result of melanism, which is essentially albinism in reverse.
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Old 28 December 2006, 05:27 PM
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In the NW corner of Lower Michigan, there are almost exclusively black squirrels. I found that very odd. I never noticed that they also lived in DC.
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  #5  
Old 28 December 2006, 05:36 PM
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There is a story to go along with those Michgian squirrels. They aren't indiginous to that part of the state. Kellogg, of breakfast cereal fame, brought some down from Michigan's upper penninsula. At least according to the story, all of the black squirrels in lower Michigan descend from the Kellogg squirrels.
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Old 28 December 2006, 05:40 PM
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The squirrels in Kent, OH aren't indigenous, either. A professor at Kent State University brought some back from Canada.

The squirrel population in Kent is pretty evenly distributed between gray and black squirrels. I wonder if the relative dominance of the black squirrels has to do with the size of the original introduced population. Supposedly, the Kent State prof only introduced one breeding pair.
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Old 29 December 2006, 01:29 AM
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Princeton, NJ has black squirrels, especially around the university campus. Campus tours even point them out to visitors.
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  #8  
Old 29 December 2006, 03:00 AM
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Marysville, Kansas is also proud of its non-indigenous black squirrels. You get ticketed if you hit one with a car. And the city doesn't have a Halloween parade, but rather a "Black Squirrel Night" celebration every October. City Court's been canceled when it conflicts with Black Squirrel Night.

http://skyways.lib.ks.us/towns/Marysville/squirrel.html
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  #9  
Old 29 December 2006, 03:24 AM
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I didn't realize there were black squirrels in the US, the only time I've seen them was in Toronto.

Cute side story: My daughter was 7 when we went to Toronto. We were at the Toronto Zoo when a black squirrel ran across our path. She was so excited, exclaiming that this was the "first time in [her] whole life" that she'd seen a black squirrel. And I just had to laugh because here we were at the one of the best zoos in the world, surrounded by exotic animals, and she's excited about the squirrel (of which we have plenty around here, but only the gray kind).
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  #10  
Old 29 December 2006, 06:38 AM
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We don't have black squirrels at Western Kentucky, we have white ones. You can check what one looks like by going here: http://i56.photobucket.com/albums/g2...s/HPIM0009.jpg.
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  #11  
Old 29 December 2006, 02:37 PM
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I saw the black squirrels in Toronto as well.

It's a bit off-topic, but I have also noticed that all of the pigeons in Hawaii are white. After seeing about the third all-white flock in Honolulu, I realized that something was going on. I've never seen any other color.
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  #12  
Old 29 December 2006, 02:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Beachlife! View Post
There is a story to go along with those Michgian squirrels. They aren't indiginous to that part of the state. Kellogg, of breakfast cereal fame, brought some down from Michigan's upper penninsula. At least according to the story, all of the black squirrels in lower Michigan descend from the Kellogg squirrels.

That would make sense to me. Over in Battle Creek, I see a lot of black squirrels. Here in Kalamazoo, which is only 20 miles away, I almost never see a black one, only the brown ones. I've alway's wondered why there were black ones over there, and none here.
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  #13  
Old 29 December 2006, 03:27 PM
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There are a few running around Brooklyn. My son is infatuated with them. God forbid we see one or two, and I get the blow by blow of what Mr. Squirrel's day may or may not have been like. They are freakin' cute, though.
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  #14  
Old 29 December 2006, 04:27 PM
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There are still a few Red squirrels here in the UK but they are pretty rare since the American Greys were more effective.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Red_Squirrel

Blues
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  #15  
Old 29 December 2006, 06:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Beachlife! View Post
There is a story to go along with those Michgian squirrels. They aren't indiginous to that part of the state. Kellogg, of breakfast cereal fame, brought some down from Michigan's upper penninsula. At least according to the story, all of the black squirrels in lower Michigan descend from the Kellogg squirrels.

That's the story I heard.

And let me tell you, at my grandparent's place over in Houghton Lake, there's way too many black squirrel's. Way too many.

Morrigan
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  #16  
Old 29 December 2006, 08:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lainie View Post
The squirrels in Kent, OH aren't indigenous, either. A professor at Kent State University brought some back from Canada.

The squirrel population in Kent is pretty evenly distributed between gray and black squirrels. I wonder if the relative dominance of the black squirrels has to do with the size of the original introduced population. Supposedly, the Kent State prof only introduced one breeding pair.
This is the story I heard about our black squirrels here too.

The apartment where I first lived, when I moved to Virginia (in Arlington), was right in an area with a bunch of black squirrels. They were so neat to look at! There were tons of them. But a few blocks away and across the street, where pinqy lived, there weren't any. Weird, huh?
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  #17  
Old 29 December 2006, 08:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ali_marea View Post
The apartment where I first lived, when I moved to Virginia (in Arlington), was right in an area with a bunch of black squirrels. They were so neat to look at! There were tons of them. But a few blocks away and across the street, where pinqy lived, there weren't any. Weird, huh?
It's been interesting to watch the spread of the black squirrel population in the area I grew up. They started out on the Kent State campus, which is on the east side of town. Fifty years later, they were widespread on the west side of town, where I lived. Now they're moving into the surrounding towns.
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  #18  
Old 29 December 2006, 09:25 PM
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I like squirrels and I think the black ones are beautiful. There are black squirrels in town here, but not beyond the village limits, so I don't get any at my bird feeders.
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  #19  
Old 29 December 2006, 09:30 PM
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We saw a good many black squirrels back at Halloween when Mrs. from Georgia and I visited Marshall, Michigan, including one wily fellow who had a big bushy black tail with a white stripe running along it. We figured either he was disguising himself as a skunk as a survival tactic or else he had run into Pepe le Pew.
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  #20  
Old 29 December 2006, 09:41 PM
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Don't forget Mirkwood

Quote:
Many animals lived in Mirkwood, including black squirrels and deer, some dark and some white. There were large black bats and dark-grey and black moths that were as big as a person's hand. Above the forest, black emperor butterflies lived in the treetops. Ordinary spiders also lived in the treetops, while down below dwelled the huge and terrifying Great Spiders who wove webs in the tree-branches and fed on warm blood.
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