Our ancestors called this fluffy animal a fan or a vesch. To us, this forest beauty is known as a squirrel.
Squirrels belong to the order of rodents, along with mice, marmots, chipmunks, etc. In total, there are about 50 species of squirrels in the world. But in the CIS, only 2 species are found - ordinary squirrel and Persian.
The common squirrel is widespread in us almost everywhere, with the exception of the Far North and South (zones of steppes and deserts). She prefers fodder-rich forests, dark coniferous and deciduous taiga, mixed forests. The highest density of squirrel population is recorded in Siberia - up to 500-600 units per 1000 ha.
In the Moscow region, there is less protein, only 20-90 animals per 1000 ha, but this is enough to make the protein considered one of the most numerous and visible inhabitants of the Moscow Region forests.
Everybody knows an ordinary squirrel. This is a small animal: the body length is about 20-25 cm, not counting the length of the tail (15-20 cm).
Big black eyes and long ears give a special expression to the muzzle. A characteristic feature of an ordinary squirrel is tassels on the ears.
Powerful “push” hind limbs are longer than the front “grasping” ones. Fingers on both front and hind legs are elongated, equipped with tenacious claws - with their help squirrels can be held on a tree trunk, moving even upside down.
Proteins rarely become truly tame. Even having learned not to be afraid of people and take food from their hands, the squirrel remains a wild animal, capable of "biting the mood" to bite its owner and, if possible, run away from home.
The main thing is the tail
Delicate fluffy squirrel fur can have a different color (red, ash, almost black, etc.) depending on the habitat, season, age. But the abdomen always remains white. The most important decoration of the squirrel is its tail. This huge (almost from the very beast) fan was given to the squirrel not only for beauty. It is thanks to him that she can make her beautiful jumps from tree to tree, while flying a distance of up to eight meters. The tail is the subject of constant concern for the squirrel. She has to make sure that he does not get dirty and not get wet. Therefore, when the animal crosses the river, the tail sticks out like water above the water.
The squirrel is unusually mobile, its movements are swift and cutting. It is perfectly adapted for life on trees, and even the dexterous and agile marten, sable and charza can not always catch it.
The most active protein in the afternoon. In the dark, she sleeps high above the ground in a hollow or hay (the so-called squirrel nest). The squirrel has several nests: it arranges them very carefully, lining it with moss and grass. The furry hostess has even more storages for food. Squirrel herself often forgets where she hid her supplies. But this does not matter: another squirrel or bird will surely stumble upon a secret place, and the hostess of the reserve will easily treat itself to someone else's pantry.
With good care, proteins can live in captivity more than in natural conditions - up to 15-18 years
The protein feeds on coniferous seeds, acorns, nuts, berries and mushrooms. Animal food is not alien to it - insects, eggs of birds. With a lack of basic feed, the protein nibbles on the bark of trees, eats leaves and stems, does not disdain lichens. In hungry years, squirrels raid human dwellings in search of food.