Articles on this page are available in 1 other language: Spanish (15) (learn more)

Overview

Brief Summary

Description

"Most of the Southern Flying Squirrel's range is east of the Mississippi River, but it occurs west of the river in central Texas, and as far south as Honduras, in Central America. Like the Northern Flying Squirrel, it has a gliding membrane (patagium) and a flattened tail. Flying squirrels are nocturnal and are much smaller than most tree squirrels, which are diurnal. Although primarily associated with hardwoods, especially oaks and hickories, Southern Flying Squirrels inhabit forests of diverse types, and even live in cities and suburbs. A natural cavity or old woodpecker hole in a live or dead tree is the typical nest site. Where the ranges of the two species of flying squirrels overlap, it appears the Southern Flying Squirrel may out-compete its larger relative."

Links:
Mammal Species of the World
Click here for The American Society of Mammalogists species account
  • Original description: Linnaeus, C., 1758.  Systema Naturae per regna tria naturae, secundum classis, ordines, genera, species cum characteribus, differentiis, synonymis, locis, p. 63.  Tenth Edition, Vol. 1. Laurentii Salvii, Stockholm, 824 pp.
Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 (CC BY 3.0)

© Smithsonian Institution

Source: Smithsonian's North American Mammals

Trusted

Article rating from 1 person

Average rating: 4.0 of 5

Distribution

Range Description

This species is found in Texas, Kansas, and Minnesota in the United States, east to Quebec and Nova Scotia in Canada (uncommon to rare in these provinces) and eastern United States; there are montane populations scattered from northwestern Mexico to Honduras (Hoffmann et al., in Wilson and Reeder 1993).
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources

Source: IUCN

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Geographic Range

Southern flying squirrels are found in southeastern Canada, the eastern United States, and south as far as Mexico and Honduras. They have a Nearctic distribution.

Biogeographic Regions: nearctic (Native ); neotropical (Native )

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: BioKIDS Critter Catalog

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Geographic Range

Glaucomys volans is found in southeastern Canada, the eastern United States, and south as far as Mexico and Honduras.

Biogeographic Regions: nearctic (Native ); neotropical (Native )

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: Animal Diversity Web

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

occurs (regularly, as a native taxon) in multiple nations

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

National Distribution

Canada

Origin: Native

Regularity: Regularly occurring

Currently: Present

Confidence: Confident

Type of Residency: Year-round

United States

Origin: Native

Regularity: Regularly occurring

Currently: Present

Confidence: Confident

Type of Residency: Year-round

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Global Range: (>2,500,000 square km (greater than 1,000,000 square miles)) Texas, Kansas, and Minnesota east to Quebec and Nova Scotia (uncommon to rare in these provinces) and eastern U.S.; montane populations scattered from northwestern Mexico to Honduras (Hoffmann et al., in Wilson and Reeder 1993). See Stabb (1988 COSEWIC report) for information on distribution and abundance in Canada.

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Physical Description

Morphology

Physical Description

Flying squirrels are easily distinguished by the "gliding membrane", a flap of loose skin that extends from wrist to ankle. The loose skin along the side of the body is supported by stiff extensions of the wrists and ankles. The soft fur on the back and tail is grey and the belly is white. The tail is flattened. They are 21 to 26 cm in length with a tail measuring 8 to 12 cm in length.

Range length: 21.2 to 25.7 cm.

Other Physical Features: endothermic ; heterothermic ; bilateral symmetry

Sexual Dimorphism: sexes alike

Average mass: 65.4 g.

Average basal metabolic rate: 0.414 W.

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: BioKIDS Critter Catalog

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Physical Description

Flying squirrels are easily distinguished by the "gliding membrane", a flap of loose skin that extends from wrist to ankle. The loose skin along the side of the body is supported by cartilaginous spurs on the wrists and ankles. The soft fur on the back and tail is grey with varying amounts of grey tinge; the belly is white. The tail is dorso-ventrally flattened. The eyes are very large, probably related to the nocturnal habits and the visual requirements of gliding. Total length is 21.1 to 25.7 cm and tail length is 7.9 to 12 cm.

Range mass: 46 to 85 g.

Average mass: 65.38 g.

Range length: 21.2 to 25.7 cm.

Other Physical Features: endothermic ; heterothermic ; bilateral symmetry

Sexual Dimorphism: sexes alike

Average basal metabolic rate: 0.414 W.

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: Animal Diversity Web

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Size

Length: 25 cm

Weight: 70 grams

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Size in North America

Length:
Average: 231 mm
Range: 198-255 mm

Weight:
Average: 70 g
Range: 46-85 g
Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 (CC BY 3.0)

© Smithsonian Institution

Source: Smithsonian's North American Mammals

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Ecology

Habitat

Habitat and Ecology

Habitat and Ecology
It prefers deciduous and mixed forests, particularly beech-maple, oak-hickory and poplar. Also occurs in old orchards. In New Hampshire, preferentially used areas with large shagbark hickories and beeches; males tended to use areas with large oaks, females tended to use areas with abundant snags (Fridell and Litvaitis 1991). Favours small, abandoned woodpecker holes for den sites; also uses nest boxes and abandoned bird and squirrel nests outside tree cavities.

Births peak April-May and late summer in the north, late February-March and September-October in the south. Litter size usually is about 2-3 in the south, 3-4 in the north. Young first breed in spring after birth in the north, may breed late in first summer in the south. Two distinct breeding periods in New Hampshire, February-March and June-July. Females produce two litters per year.

This species is highly sociable, particularly in winter, when communal nesting peaks; communal nesting aggregations occur in both northern and southern populations (Layne and Raymond 1994). May be ousted from cavities by some large cavity-nesting birds; may kill or oust some small cavity-nesting birds. Home ranges of G. volans varied from 5-13 hectares, mean 7.4 hectares (Weigl and Osgood 1974).

Diet includes plant and animal foods. Feeds on insects in spring; nuts, seeds, and fruits through the rest of the year. May eat birds (especially eggs and young) and carrion. Caches food for winter. In South Carolina, acorns were most important throughout year; pine seeds, other plant material, and a few insects also consumed (Harlow and Doyle 1990). Active at night throughout the year, except during extreme winter cold. Will enter a state of torpor in cold periods.

Systems
  • Terrestrial
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources

Source: IUCN

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Southern flying squirrels are found in woodlands. They prefer seed-producing hardwood trees, such as maple, beech, hickory, oak, and poplar. They are also found in forests with mixed hardwood tree and conifer trees.

Habitat Regions: temperate ; terrestrial

Terrestrial Biomes: forest

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: BioKIDS Critter Catalog

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Southern flying squirrels are found in woodlands. They seem to prefer seed-producing hardwoods, particularly maple, beech, hickory, oak, and poplar. They are also found in mixed conifer/deciduous forests.

Habitat Regions: temperate ; terrestrial

Terrestrial Biomes: forest

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: Animal Diversity Web

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Comments: Prefers deciduous and mixed forests, particularly beech- maple, oak-hickory and poplar. Also occurs in old orchards. In New Hampshire, preferentially used areas with large shagbark hickories and beeches; males tended to use areas with large oaks, females tended to use areas with abundant snags (Fridell and Litvaitis 1991). Favors small, abandoned woodpecker holes for den sites; also uses nest boxes and abandoned bird and squirrel nests outside tree cavities.

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Migration

Non-Migrant: Yes. At least some populations of this species do not make significant seasonal migrations. Juvenile dispersal is not considered a migration.

Locally Migrant: No. No populations of this species make local extended movements (generally less than 200 km) at particular times of the year (e.g., to breeding or wintering grounds, to hibernation sites).

Locally Migrant: No. No populations of this species make annual migrations of over 200 km.

In Maryland, home range averaged about 2-4 ha for adults, less than 1 ha for juveniles (Bendell and Gates 1987, Gilmore and Gates 1985). In New Hampshire, home range (convex polygon) was 3.4-22.1 (mean 9.9) ha for males, 3.0-4.4 ha for females (Fridell and Litvaitis 1991). In Arkansas, mean home range size was about 4 (female) and 8 (male) ha measured planimetrically, 4 (female) and 9 (male) ha taking into consideration topography via GIS (Stone et al. 1997).

Home ranges of G. volans varied from 5-13 hectares, mean 7.4 hectares (Weigl and Osgood 1974); mean 2.45 hectares for males and 1.95 hectares for females (Bendel and Gates 1987).

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Trophic Strategy

Food Habits

Southern flying squirrels are omnivores and eat a wide range of foods, including nuts, acorns, seeds, berries, fruit, Lepidoptera, Coleoptera, leaf buds, bark, eggs and young Aves, young Peromyscus leucopus, Insecta carrion, and fungus. They are especially fond of hickory nuts and acorns; one sure sign of the presence of this species is piles of gnawed hickory nuts at the base of large hickory trees. They will store food for winter use.

Animal Foods: birds; eggs; carrion ; insects

Plant Foods: leaves; wood, bark, or stems; seeds, grains, and nuts; fruit

Other Foods: fungus

Foraging Behavior: stores or caches food

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: BioKIDS Critter Catalog

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Food Habits

Southern flying squirrels are omnivores and eat a wide range of foods, including nuts, acorns, seeds, berries, fruit, moths, junebugs, leaf buds, bark, eggs and young birds, young mice, insects carrion, and fungus. They are especially fond of hickory nuts and acorns; one sure sign of the presence of this species is piles of gnawed hickory nuts at the base of large hickory trees. They will store food for winter use.

Animal Foods: birds; eggs; carrion ; insects

Plant Foods: leaves; wood, bark, or stems; seeds, grains, and nuts; fruit

Other Foods: fungus

Foraging Behavior: stores or caches food

Primary Diet: omnivore

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: Animal Diversity Web

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Comments: Eats plant and animal foods. Most "carnivorous" of the squirrels (Dolan and Carter 1977). Feeds on insects in spring; nuts, seeds, and fruits through the rest of the year. May eat birds (especially eggs and young) and carrion. Caches food for winter. In South Carolina, acorns were most important throughout year; pine seeds, other plant material, and a few insects also consumed (Harlow and Doyle 1990).

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Associations

Ecosystem Roles

Flying squirrels disperse the seeds of hardwood trees and the spores of fungi.

Ecosystem Impact: disperses seeds

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: BioKIDS Critter Catalog

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Predation

Flying squirrels avoid predators by being nocturnal and by being fast and agile in the trees and during their glides. They are alert for predators constantly. The most successful predators on flying squirrels are able to fly, such as Accipitridae and Strigiformes, or can climb well, such as Felis silvestris, Lynx rufus, Mustela, Procyon lotor, and climbing Squamata.

Known Predators:

  • Accipitridae
  • Strigiformes
  • Felis silvestris
  • Lynx rufus
  • Mustela
  • Procyon lotor
  • Squamata

Anti-predator Adaptations: cryptic

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: BioKIDS Critter Catalog

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Ecosystem Roles

Flying squirrels consume large numbers of the fruiting bodies of subterranean fungi, dispersing the spores in their feces. The mycelia of these fungi form close associations with the roots of many species of trees and are believed to be essential for tree growth and maintenance. They also disperse the seeds of hardwood trees.

Ecosystem Impact: disperses seeds

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: Animal Diversity Web

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Predation

Flying squirrels avoid predators by being nocturnal and by being fast and agile in the trees and during their glides. They are alert for predators constantly. The most successful predators on flying squirrels are able to fly, such as hawks and owls, or can climb well, such as domestic cats, bobcats, weasels, raccoons, and climbing snakes.

Known Predators:

Anti-predator Adaptations: cryptic

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: Animal Diversity Web

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Known predators

Glaucomys volans is prey of:
Squamata
Strigiformes
Accipitridae
Mustela
Procyon lotor
Lynx rufus
Felis silvestris

This list may not be complete but is based on published studies.
Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 (CC BY 3.0)

© SPIRE project

Source: SPIRE

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Known prey organisms

Glaucomys volans preys on:
fungi
Insecta
Aves

This list may not be complete but is based on published studies.
Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 (CC BY 3.0)

© SPIRE project

Source: SPIRE

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Population Biology

Number of Occurrences

Note: For many non-migratory species, occurrences are roughly equivalent to populations.

Estimated Number of Occurrences: 81 to >300

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Global Abundance

10,000 to >1,000,000 individuals

Comments: Common throughout most of range.

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

General Ecology

Highly sociable, particularly in winter, when communal nesting peaks; communal nesting aggregations occur in both northern and southern populations (Layne and Raymond, 1994, J. Mamm. 75:110-120).

Population density was estimated at 31-38/ha in southeastern Virginia (Sawyer and Rose 1985), 10-14/ha in Maryland, 1.5-2.5/ha in Michigan-Massachusetts (see Layne and Raymond). May be ousted from cavities by some large cavity-nesting birds; may kill or oust some small cavity-nesting birds.

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Life History and Behavior

Behavior

Communication and Perception

Not much is known about communication in southern flying squirrels. They have excellent senses of smell, vision, hearing, and touch. They have large eyes which help them to see at night and whiskers on their chin, cheeks, and ankles that they use to help them in detecting their way along tree trunks at night.

Communication Channels: tactile ; acoustic ; chemical

Perception Channels: visual ; acoustic

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: BioKIDS Critter Catalog

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Communication and Perception

Southern flying squirrels have very large eyes in order to see well in low light. They have keen senses of smell, touch, vision, and hearing. They probably communicate about reproductive condition through chemical cues. Vibrissae on the cheeks, chin, and ankles help them in navigating at night. They are relatively quiet but may use some vocalizations in social communication.

Communication Channels: tactile ; acoustic ; chemical

Perception Channels: visual ; acoustic

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: Animal Diversity Web

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Cyclicity

Comments: Active at night throughout the year, except during extreme winter cold. Will enter a state of torpor in cold periods.

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Life Expectancy

Lifespan/Longevity

Southern flying squirrels in the wild can live to 5 or 6 years old. In captivity they have been known to live up to 10 years. Most flying squirrels probably die in their first year of life.

Range lifespan

Status: captivity:
10 (high) years.

Typical lifespan

Status: wild:
5-6 (high) years.

Average lifespan

Status: captivity:
12.0 years.

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: BioKIDS Critter Catalog

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Lifespan/Longevity

Southern flying squirrels in the wild can live to 5 or 6 years old. In captivity they have been known to live up to 10 years. Most flying squirrels probably die in their first year of life.

Range lifespan

Status: captivity:
10 (high) years.

Typical lifespan

Status: wild:
6 (high) years.

Average lifespan

Status: captivity:
12.0 years.

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: Animal Diversity Web

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Lifespan, longevity, and ageing

Maximum longevity: 19 years (captivity) Observations: One wild born specimen was about 19 years old when it died in captivity (Richard Weigl 2005).
Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 (CC BY 3.0)

© Joao Pedro de Magalhaes

Source: AnAge

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Reproduction

Not much is known about mating in southern flying squirrels.

Mating System: polygynous

Females usually mate twice per year during the warmer months, from February to September. Populations living farther south give birth to their young earlier in the year than do populations living in the northern parts of the range. Females are pregnant for about 40 days and give birth to 1 to 6 young (usually 2 to 3). Young southern flying squirrels are fully grown by one year old.

Breeding interval: Southern flying squirrels breed twice each year.

Breeding season: Breeding occurs from January to April and from June to August.

Range number of offspring: 1 to 6.

Average number of offspring: 2-3.

Average gestation period: 40 days.

Average time to independence: 120 days.

Range age at sexual or reproductive maturity (female): 9 (low) months.

Average age at sexual or reproductive maturity (female): 12 months.

Average age at sexual or reproductive maturity (male): 12 months.

Key Reproductive Features: iteroparous ; seasonal breeding ; gonochoric/gonochoristic/dioecious (sexes separate); fertilization (Internal ); viviparous

Average birth mass: 3.35 g.

Average gestation period: 40 days.

Average number of offspring: 4.

Young flying squirrels are born naked and helpless in their mother's nest. Their ears open at 2 to 6 days old, they develop some fur by 7 days old, and their eyes open by their 24th or 30th day of life. Females care for their young in the nest and nurse them for 65 days, which is an unusually long time for an animal of this size. The young become independent by 4 months old unless they are born later in the summer, in which case they usually overwinter as a family.

Parental Investment: altricial ; female parental care

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: BioKIDS Critter Catalog

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Little is known about the mating system in southern flying squirrels. Males and females do not associate much beyond breeding.

Not much is known about mating in southern flying squirrels.

Mating System: polygynous

Females are polyestrous and typically mate twice per year. Births thus have two peaks, from February to May and from July to September. There is, however, some geographic variation in the timing of births. (In Michigan, they court and breed in winter and early spring.) The gestation period is 40 days. Litters can range from one to six young, though two or three is most common. The young are weaned at 65 days (an unusually long time for an animal this small) and are independent at 120 days. Maturity is usually attained at twelve months, though ages as young as nine months have been reported.

Breeding interval: Southern flying squirrels breed twice each year.

Breeding season: Breeding occurs from January to April and from June to August.

Range number of offspring: 1 to 6.

Average number of offspring: 2-3.

Average gestation period: 40 days.

Average time to independence: 120 days.

Range age at sexual or reproductive maturity (female): 9 (low) months.

Average age at sexual or reproductive maturity (female): 12 months.

Average age at sexual or reproductive maturity (male): 12 months.

Key Reproductive Features: iteroparous ; seasonal breeding ; gonochoric/gonochoristic/dioecious (sexes separate); fertilization (Internal ); viviparous

Average birth mass: 3.35 g.

Average gestation period: 40 days.

Average number of offspring: 4.

Young flying squirrels are born naked and helpless in their mother's nest. Their ears open at 2 to 6 days old, they develop some fur by 7 days old, and their eyes open by their 24th or 30th day of life. Females care for their young in the nest and nurse them for 65 days, which is an unusually long time for an animal of this size. The young become independent by 4 months old unless they are born later in the summer, in which case they usually overwinter as a family.

Parental Investment: altricial ; female parental care

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: Animal Diversity Web

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Gestation lasts about 40 days. Births peak April-May and late summer in north, late February-March and September-October in south. Litter size usually is about 2-3 in south, 3-4 in north. Young first breed in spring after birth in north, may breed late in 1st summer in south. Two distinct breeding periods in New Hampshire, February-March and June-July; two litters per year (Stapp and Mautz 1991).

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Evolution and Systematics

Functional Adaptations

Functional adaptation

Low-energy air transport: flying squirrels
 

The extensions of skin attached to the legs of flying squirrels enables low-energy air transport by serving as a deployable gliding surface.

   
  "Membranes of skin are also used by other mammals to achieve, if not real flight, at least gliding. The flying squirrels and gliding possums have a membrane of skin extending between the wrist and ankle on each side of the body. When the animal launches itself from a high branch it spreads its limbs wide apart and the taut membranes act as a parachute: the great gliding possum can make leaps covering 100 metres in this way. 'Flying' frogs have similar enlarged membranes between their long toes which they use in gliding leaps from tree to tree." (Foy and Oxford Scientific Films 1982)

"Keith Paskins of the University of Bath, is trying to mimic flying squirrels for use in unmanned crafts. The squirrels have floppy skin attached to their wrists and ankles, which they can stretch out to make a gliding surface. The animals also appear to be able to control their gliding through rapid movements while in the air. By incorporating jumping as a flying squirrel does, the craft could conserve energy by using gliding to fly to the surface." (Courtesy of the Biomimicry Guild)

Watch video
  Learn more about this functional adaptation.
  • Foy, Sally; Oxford Scientific Films. 1982. The Grand Design: Form and Colour in Animals. Lingfield, Surrey, U.K.: BLA Publishing Limited for J.M.Dent & Sons Ltd, Aldine House, London. 238 p.
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© The Biomimicry Institute

Source: AskNature

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Functional adaptation

Wings provide lift for gliding: flying squirrel
 

Wings of flying squirrels provide lift and decrease drag due to being cambered and having a well-developed forewing.

   
  Gliding is a form of locomotion that requires individual variation in rotations to restore equilibrium. "In a steady, non-accelerating glide, the glide ratio is determined by the ratio of lift to drag, the aerodynamic forces perpendicular to the direction of travel and parallel and opposite to the direction of travel, respectively. The lift-to-drag ratio can be increased by increasing lift, decreasing drag, and/or by producing thrust, defined as a force that opposes drag. Flapping has often been assumed to have evolved as a means to increase lift and thrust…thereby increasing the distance traveled." (Bishop 2007: 2594)

"Flying squirrels generated more lift and less drag than sugar gliders…There are several possible reasons why flying squirrels tend to produce greater lift coefficients than sugar gliders. One is that their wings are more cambered in flight (Table·1). In addition, flying squirrels possess a well-developed forewing structure called a propatagium that is present, but much smaller, in sugar gliders… In the case of the squirrels, increasing the lift coefficient increased the forward acceleration, which in turn contributed to greater overall velocity. (Bishop 2007: 2604-2605)

"Aerodynamic performance declines with increasing aspect ratio, particularly at the high angles of attack used by the gliders…But, at higher aspect ratios, aerodynamic performance increases with increasing aspect ratio. This may have presented a kind of adaptive barrier during the transition from a low aspect ratio glider wing to a high aspect ratio bat wing…Understanding the relationships between kinematics, force production and gliding performance across species in the context of disparate performance parameters, not only improves our understanding of and appreciation for gliding as a form of locomotion, but will also lead to more fruitful hypotheses regarding the origin of flight in bats." (Bishop 2007:2605)
  Learn more about this functional adaptation.
  • Bishop, K. L. 2007. Aerodynamic force generation, performance and control of body orientation during gliding in sugar gliders (Petaurus breviceps). Journal of Experimental Biology. 210(15): 2593.
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© The Biomimicry Institute

Source: AskNature

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Molecular Biology and Genetics

Molecular Biology

Statistics of barcoding coverage: Glaucomys volans

Barcode of Life Data Systems (BOLDS) Stats
Public Records: 0
Specimens with Barcodes: 10
Species With Barcodes: 1
Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 (CC BY 3.0)

© Barcode of Life Data Systems

Source: Barcode of Life Data Systems (BOLD)

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Conservation

Conservation Status

IUCN Red List Assessment


Red List Category
LC
Least Concern

Red List Criteria

Version
3.1

Year Assessed
2008

Assessor/s
Linzey, A.V. & NatureServe (Hammerson, G.)

Reviewer/s
Amori, G. (Small Nonvolant Mammal Red List Authority) & Chanson, J. (Global Mammal Assessment Team)

Contributor/s

Justification
Listed as Least Concern because it is very widespread, and can be abundant in suitable habitat, and there are no major threats.
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources

Source: IUCN

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

National NatureServe Conservation Status

Canada

Rounded National Status Rank: N4 - Apparently Secure

United States

Rounded National Status Rank: N5 - Secure

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Some populations of southern flying squirrel in Central America are rare and may be endangered. Throughout most of their range, though, flying squirrels are common.

IUCN Red List of Threatened Species: least concern

US Federal List: no special status

CITES: no special status

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: BioKIDS Critter Catalog

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Some subspecies in Central America are rare and may be endangered.

US Federal List: no special status

CITES: no special status

State of Michigan List: no special status

IUCN Red List of Threatened Species: least concern

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: Animal Diversity Web

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

NatureServe Conservation Status

Rounded Global Status Rank: G5 - Secure

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Population

Population
This species is common throughout most of range (NatureServe). Population density was estimated at 31-38/ha in southeastern Virginia (Sawyer and Rose 1985), 10-14/ha in Maryland, 1.5-2.5/ha in Michigan-Massachusetts (Layne and Raymond 1994).

Population Trend
Stable
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources

Source: IUCN

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Threats

Major Threats
There are no major threats to the species overall. Localised threats include loss of habitat and loss of cavity-bearing and mast-producing trees. In Arkansas, a seed-tree harvest regime, particularly without retained overstorey hardwoods, produced a level of disturbance and resource depletion that was too severe for flying squirrel persistence (Taulman et al. 1998).
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources

Source: IUCN

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Degree of Threat: D : Unthreatened throughout its range, communities may be threatened in minor portions of the range or degree of variation falls within natural variation

Comments: Threats include loss of habitat and loss of cavity-bearing and mast-producing trees. In Arkansas, a seed-tree harvest regime, particularly without retained overstory hardwoods, produced a level of disturbance and resource depletion that was too severe for flying squirrel persistence (Taulman et al. 1998).

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Management

Conservation Actions

Conservation Actions
Its range includes several protected areas.
Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources

Source: IUCN

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Global Protection: Unknown whether any occurrences are appropriately protected and managed

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Relevance to Humans and Ecosystems

Benefits

Economic Importance for Humans: Negative

Flying squirrels are sometimes pests when they make nests in houses.

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: BioKIDS Critter Catalog

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Economic Importance for Humans: Positive

Flying squirrels play important ecosystem roles in hardwood forests. They are also sometimes kept as pets.

Positive Impacts: pet trade

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: BioKIDS Critter Catalog

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Economic Importance for Humans: Negative

Flying squirrels are sometimes pests when they make nests in houses.

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: Animal Diversity Web

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Economic Importance for Humans: Positive

Flying squirrels play important ecosystem roles in hardwood forests. They are also sometimes kept as pets.

Positive Impacts: pet trade

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-NC-SA 3.0)

© The Regents of the University of Michigan and its licensors

Source: Animal Diversity Web

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Wikipedia

Southern flying squirrel

The southern flying squirrel (Glaucomys volans) is one of two species of the genus Glaucomys, the only flying squirrels found in North America (the other is the somewhat larger northern flying squirrel G. sabrinus). It is found in deciduous and mixed woods in the eastern half of North America, from southeastern Canada, to Florida, USA. Disjunct distribution for populations of this species have been recorded in the highlands of Mexico, Guatemala and Honduras.

Description and ecology[edit]

A squirrel in flight

Southern flying squirrels have grey brown fur on top with darker flanks and are a cream color underneath. They have large dark eyes and a flattened tail. They have a furry membrane called a patagium which extends between the front and rear legs, used to glide through the air.

Southern flying squirrels feed on fruit and nuts from trees such as red and white oak, hickory and beech. They store food, especially acorns, for winter consumption. They also dine on insects, buds, mushrooms, mycorrhizal fungi, carrion, bird eggs and nestlings and flowers. Predators include snakes,[3] owls, hawks and raccoons. Domestic house cats can be dangerous to these animals.

Both in the wild and in captivity they can produce two litters each year (with 2-7 young per litter). The gestation period is approximately 40 days. Young are born without fur or any capabilities of its own. Their ears open at 2 to 6 days old, and fur grows in by 7 days. Their eyes don't open until they are 24–30 days old. Parents leave their young 65 days after they are born. The young then become fully independent at around 120 days of age.

Southern flying squirrels show substantial homing abilities, and can return to their nests if artificially removed to distances of up to a kilometre. Their home ranges may be up to 40,000 square meters for females and double that for males, tending to be larger at the northern extreme of their range.

Exposure to southern flying squirrels has been linked to cases of epidemic typhus in humans.[4] Typhus spread by flying squirrels is known as "sylvatic typhus" and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has documented a total of 39 such cases in the U.S. from 1976 to 2001.[5] The squirrel acts as host to the Rickettsia prowazekii bacteria and transmission to humans is believed to occur via lice or fleas.

Gliding[edit]

Flying squirrels do not actually fly, but rather glide using a membrane called a patagium.[6][7] From atop of trees, flying squirrels can initiate glides from a running start [7] or from a stationary position by bringing their limbs under the body, retracting their heads, and then propelling themselves off the tree.[6][7] It is believed that they use triangulation to estimate the distance of the landing area as they often lean out and pivot from side to side before jumping.[8] Once in the air, they from an "X" with their limbs by spreading their long arms forward and out and their long legs backward and out, causing their membrane to stretch into a square-like shape [8] and glide down at angles of 30 to 40 degrees.[7] They manoeuvre with great efficiency in the air, making 90 degree turns around obstacles if needed.[7] Just before reaching a tree, they raise their flattened tails which abruptly changes their trajectory upwards, and point all of their limbs forward to create a parachute effect with the membrane in order to reduce the shock of landing.[8] The limbs absorb the remainder of the impact, and the squirrels immediately run to the other side of the trunk or to the top of the tree in order to avoid any potential predators.[8] Although graceful in flight, they are very clumsy walkers and if they happen to be on the ground in the presence of danger, they will prefer to hide rather than attempt an escape.[6][7]

Habitat[edit]

The southern flying squirrel is found in eastern deciduous forests or mixed forests of North America.[7] Large hickory[9] and beech trees[9][10] are more abundant in intensively used areas of their home ranges. Also, maple and poplar,[6][7] as well as oak trees make favorable habitat.[6] Although southern flying squirrels may be present in heavily wooded suburban regions, they never occur in large numbers in these areas.[6]

The size of the home range of southern flying squirrels varies greatly.[11] Average home range estimates are 2.45 hectares,[11] 9.0 hectares,[12] and 16.0 hectares [9] for adult males, 1.95 hectares,[11] 3.9 hectares,[12] and 7.2 hectares [9] for adult females, and 0.61 hectares for juveniles.[11] Significant overlap exists among the home ranges.[9][11][12] Near the northern limit of the southern flying squirrels distribution, home range increases in size as mast-producing trees become more dispersed.[9] This trend is also observed in fragmented forests where nesting and foraging areas become widely spaced.[13]

Home range is larger in males than females[9][11][12][13] possibly to increase the chance of encountering potential mates.[9] Although males have a larger home range, female home ranges have been shown to increase by as much as 70 percent following the departure of the offspring.[11]

Number of nesting sites does not influence the total number of flying squirrels[14] but may influence which sex will be present.[9] Male home ranges contain more food as they have been associated with a higher than expected number of large red oaks and white oaks, whereas female home ranges contained lower food resources and more abundant nesting sites possibly to avoid contact with other squirrels while raising the young.[9]

Southern flying squirrels nest in natural cavities and woodpecker holes,[10][14][15] or build nest out of leaves and twigs.[10][14] Leaf nests are used as a refuge or a resting site and are used primarily in summer, whereas cavities are used for breeding and more intensively during winter.[14] Cavities used by southern flying squirrels are found in small snags (average 23.27 centimeters diameter at breast height or large living trees (average 50.42 centimeters diameter at breast height) with entrances that average 4.7 centimeters in width by 9.4 centimeters in height which are an average of 6.36 meters above the ground.[11]

Dens tend to be on the perimeter of the home range[11][12] and situated away from clearings.[11] To cross disturbances such as plantations and logged areas, southern flying squirrels prefer to use mature forest corridors over younger ones, suggesting that they are more sensitive to forest disturbances than previously believed.[13]

Behavior[edit]

Southern flying squirrels are highly social mammals and have been observed flying and foraging together in large groups.[6] Additionally, they often aggregate together in dens, especially as seasonal temperatures decline[16][17] in order to conserve energy.[18][19] Compared to individuals who nest alone in winter, squirrels in aggregates can save 30 percent more energy.[18] Although southern flying squirrels do show a preference for relatedness, they are tolerant of nonrelated but familiar individuals, possibly because in addition to providing heat energy for the aggregation, outsiders will promote outbreeding.[20]

Mull[21] stated that communal nesting may actually be detrimental during warm weather and is unnecessary in the southern parts of the species range. However, Layne and Raymond[16] observed nest boxes in Florida and discovered that the southern populations also nest in large groups (up to 25 individuals) and that, compared to northern populations, the period of elevated communal nesting extended later in the spring. In this study, nest temperatures occasionally exceeded 38°C [16] while the normal body temperature of southern flying squirrels varies between 36.3 and 38.9°C.[19] Since southern populations breed later in the spring then northern populations,[17][22] these findings suggests that communal nesting serves more than a thermoregulatory function and may actually play a role in the social organization of populations.[16] Proposed advantages of aggregation include increase likelihood of mating, increased defense against predators, or increased foraging success.[16]

Populations which nest together were found to be more highly related than expected by chance and it is believed this could be a form of kin selection since an individual's stored food may be beneficial for the survival of its relatives in the event of death.[20][23]

Winterrowd and Weigl [24] performed experiments in controlled conditions to determine whether memory, smell, random searching, or problem solving played the major role in retrieving hidden food. When burying dry nuts in dry substrate, no odors are present and spatial memory is the most effective retrieval mechanism, suggesting that there is no inclusive fitness involved in the hoarding behavior.[24] However, once placed in a wet environment, smell becomes an effective means to retrieve the food and decreases the individuals advantage over the other members of the group.[24] Experiments to determine whether a squirrel would steal from others in the group revealed that no particular pattern exists and that the hidden food is recovered according to its availability.[24]

Footnotes[edit]

  1. ^ Linzey, A. V. & NatureServe (Hammerson, G. (2008). Glaucomys volans. In: IUCN 2008. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Retrieved 6 January 2009.
  2. ^ Howell, A.H. 1918. Revision of the American flying squirrels. North American Fauna No. 44, U.S. Dept. Agr. Biological Survey. Washington.
  3. ^ E.g.rat snakes, namely Elaphe obsoleta: Medlin & Risch (2006)
  4. ^ eMedicine - Typhus: Article Excerpt by Jason F Okulicz
  5. ^ Sylvatic Typhus Fact Sheet, Pennsylvania Department of Health Downloaded on 24 January 2010.
  6. ^ a b c d e f g Banfield AWF. 1974. The mammals of Canada. Toronto: University of Toronto Press.
  7. ^ a b c d e f g h Forsyth A. 1999. Mammals of North America: Temperate and Arctic regions. Willowdale: Firefly Books.
  8. ^ a b c d Walker EP, Paradiso JL. 1975. Mammals of the world. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press.
  9. ^ a b c d e f g h i j Fridell RA, Litvaitis JA. 1991. Influence of resource distribution and abundance on home-range characteristics of southern flying squirrels. Canadian Journal of Zoology. 69(10):2589-2593.
  10. ^ a b c Holloway GL, Malcolm JR. 2007. Nest-tree use by northern and southern flying squirrels in central Ontario. Journal of Mammalogy. 88(1):226-233.
  11. ^ a b c d e f g h i j Bendel PR, Gates JE. 1987. Home range and microhabitat partitioning of the southern flying squirrel Glaucomys volans. Journal of Mammalogy. 68(2):243-255.
  12. ^ a b c d e Stone KD, Heidt GA, Caster PT, Kennedy ML. 1997. Using geographic information systems to determine home range of the southern flying squirrel Glaucomys volans. American Midland Naturalist. 137(1):106-111.
  13. ^ a b c Taulman JF, Smith KG. 2004. Home range and habitat selection of southern flying squirrels in fragmented forests. Mammalian Biology. 69(1):11-27.
  14. ^ a b c d Brady M, Risch T, Dobson F. 2000. Availability of nest sites does not limit population size of southern flying squirrels. Canadian Journal of Zoology. 78:1144-1149.
  15. ^ Loeb SC, Reid SL, Lipscomb DJ. 2012. Habitat and landscape correlates of southern flying squirrel use of Red-cockaded Woodpecker clusters. Journal of Wildlife Management. 76(7):1509-1518.
  16. ^ a b c d e Layne JN, Raymond MAV. 1994. Communal nesting of southern flying squirrels in Florida. Journal of Mammalogy. 75(1):110-120.
  17. ^ a b Reynolds RJ, Fies ML, Pagels JF. 2009. Communal nesting and reproduction of the southern flying squirrel in Montane Virginia. Northeastern Naturalist. 16(4):563-576.
  18. ^ a b Stapp P, Pekins PJ, Mautz WW. 1991. Winter energy expenditure and the distribution of southern flying squirrels. Canadian Journal of Zoology. 69(10):2548-2555.
  19. ^ a b Merritt JF, Zegers DA, Rose LR. 2001. Seasonal thermogenesis of southern flying squirrels Glaucomys volans. Journal of Mammalogy. 82(1):51-64.
  20. ^ a b Thorington KK, Weigl PD. 2011. Role of kinship in the formation of southern flying squirrel winter aggregations. Journal of Mammalogy. 92(1):179-189.
  21. ^ Muul, I. 1968. Behavioral and physiological influences on the distribution of the flying squirrel Glaucomys volans. Miscellaneous Publications of the Museum of Zoology. University of Michigan, 134:1-66. Cited in: Layne JN, Raymond MAV. 1994. Communal nesting of southern flying squirrels in Florida. Journal of Mammalogy. 75(1):110-120.
  22. ^ Raymond MAV, Layne JN. 1988. Aspects of reproduction in the southern flying squirrel in Florida. Acta Theriologica. 33(26-43):505-518. Cited in: Layne JN, Raymond MAV. 1994. Communal nesting of southern flying squirrels in Florida. Journal of Mammalogy. 75(1):110-120.
  23. ^ Thorington KK, Metheny JD, Kalcounis-Rueppell MC, Weigl PD. 2010. Genetic relatedness in winter populations of seasonally gregarious southern flying squirrels, Glaucomys volans. Journal of Mammalogy. 91(4):897-904.
  24. ^ a b c d Winterrowd MF, Weigl PD. 2006. Mechanisms of cache retrieval in the group nesting southern flying squirrel Glaucomys volans. Ethology. 112(11):1136-1144.


References[edit]

  • Baillie, J. (1996). Glaucomys volans. 2006. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. IUCN 2006. www.iucnredlist.org. Retrieved on 12 May 2006.
  • Arbogast, B. S. (1999): Mitochondrial DNA phylogeography of the New World flying squirrels (Glaucomys): implications for Pleistocene biogeography. Journal of Mammalogy 80: 142-155.
  • Fox, D. & Mulheisen, M. (1999): Animal Diversity Web - Glaucomys volans. Accessed May 20, 2005.
  • Fridell, R. A. & Litvaitis, J. A. (1991): Influence of resource distribution and abundance on home-range characteristics of southern flying squirrels. Canadian Journal of Zoology 69: 2589-2593.
  • Medlin, E. C. & Risch, T. S. (2006) An experimental test of snake skin use to deter nest predation [English with Spanish abstract]. Condor 108(4): 963-965. DOI:10.1650/0010-5422(2006)108[963:AETOSS]2.0.CO;2 HTML abstract Summary[dead link] at conservationevidence.com
  • Mitchell, L. R.; Carlile, L. D. & Chandler, C. R. (1999): Effects of southern flying squirrels on nest success of red-cockaded woodpeckers. Journal of Wildlife Management 63: 538-545.
  • Sawyer, S. L. & Rose, R. K. (1985): Homing in and ecology of the southern flying squirrel Glaucomys volans in southeastern Virginia. American Midland Naturalist 113: 238-244.
  • Stapp, P.; Pekins, P. J. & Mautz, W. W. (1991): Winter energy-expenditure and the distribution of southern flying squirrels. Canadian Journal of Zoology 69: 2548-2555.
  • Stone, K. D.; Heidt, G. A.; Baltosser, W. H. & Caster, P. T. (1996): Factors affecting nest box use by southern flying squirrels (Glaucomys volans) and gray squirrels (Sciurus carolinensis). American Midland Naturalist 135: 9-13.
  • Stone, K. D.; Heidt, G. A.; Caster, P. T. & Kennedy, M. L. (1997): Using geographic information systems to determine home range of the southern flying squirrel (Glaucomys volans). American Midland Naturalist 137: 106-111.
  • Taulman, J. F. (1999): Selection of nest trees by southern flying squirrels (Sciuridae: Glaucomys volans) in Arkansas. Journal of Zoology 248: 369-377.
  • Taulman, J. F.; Smith, K. G. & Thill, R. E. (1998): Demographic and behavioral responses of southern flying squirrels to experimental logging in Arkansas. Ecological Applications 8: 1144-1155.
  • Thomas, R. B. & Weigl, P.D. (1998). Dynamic foraging behavior in the southern flying squirrel (Glaucomys volans): test of a model. American Midland Naturalist 140: 264-270.
Creative Commons Attribution Share Alike 3.0 (CC BY-SA 3.0)

Source: Wikipedia

Unreviewed

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Names and Taxonomy

Taxonomy

Comments: Pattern of variation in cranial characteristics does not correspond well with current subspecies ranges in southwestern part of range; morphological differences between populations in Middle America and eastern U.S. are no greater than differences between populations in northeastern and southwestern parts of range in U.S. (Braun 1988).

Thorington et al. (1996) examined morphological variation in three genera of flying squirrels and concluded that Glaucomys, Hylopetes, and Eoglaucomys form three distinct clades, with G. volans and G. sabrinus congeneric (contrasting with earlier suggestions by Burt).

Arbogast (1999) examined mtDNA phylogeography based on samples from Louisiana, Tennessee, and West Virginia and found only one major mtDNA lineage.

Creative Commons Attribution Non Commercial 3.0 (CC BY-NC 3.0)

© NatureServe

Source: NatureServe

Trusted

Article rating from 0 people

Average rating: 2.5 of 5

Disclaimer

EOL content is automatically assembled from many different content providers. As a result, from time to time you may find pages on EOL that are confusing.

To request an improvement, please leave a comment on the page. Thank you!