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Uinta Ground Squirrels can live seven years or longer, but few live more than four years. Predation is an important factor. Predators include badgers, which may account for more than a quarter of the deaths in a population annually, weasels, and birds of prey. Female squirrels and young tend to live in open habitats, possibly because predators are more easily seen there. Males—who become socially subordinate to females after the breeding season—generally remain outside a female’s territory and tend to keep out of sight. Still, males are more susceptible to predation than females. When they emerge from hibernation in the spring, Uinta Ground Squirrels feed on new, green vegetation. This green vegetation dries up in the summer, and the Ground Squirrels switch to a diet of seeds, putting on weight in preparation for a nine-month hibernation.

Mammal Species of the World


Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 (CC BY 3.0)

© Smithsonian Institution

Source: Smithsonian's North American Mammals

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