Where do squirrels go during a hurricane? Squirrels are small bushy-tailed creatures. They belong to the Sciuridae family, this is a family that includes small and medium-sized rodents. There are various members in the Sciuridae family that includes chipmunks, ground squirrels, tree squirrels, groundhogs, marmots, prairie dogs, and flying squirrels.
The wildlife and farm animals are often unsafe during storms and hurricanes. They cannot easily escape severe storms and hurricanes like humans can. Animals can sense the signs of changes in the weather. They will be prepared for storms as they can sense them earlier. Squirrels live in tree trunks, burrows, tree holes, and places that best suit their needs and behavior patterns. But Where do squirrels go during a hurricane? Will squirrels lose their homes and life?
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What are hurricanes, and how does it affect wildlife?
Hurricanes are strong winds. It is called a tropical cyclone as it is a type of storm. Storms 74 mph and higher are generally classified as hurricanes, 74 mph being the minimum speed among all potential hurricanes. Animals, birds, and humans get adversely affected due to hurricanes. But for animals and birds, it is not as easy as it is for humans. They struggle a lot even though they can sense the storms earlier. The strong winds blow the birds and animals off-course.
Hurricanes can be even stronger when combined with rain. It loosens the soil and damages the forest areas. Most of the animals and birds have built their homes in the forest and on the trees. They also depend on forests for food. Due to loose soil, the trees lose their stronghold over the soil. A few animals, birds, and species like rabbits, deer, migratory birds, turkeys, and squirrels mostly lose their homes and life as they are small and cannot withstand the strength of the winds. They might be forced inland or washed off the sea.
These strong hurricane winds emerge from tropical waters. These furious storms emerge over the ocean, and it begins as a tropical wave. It starts in a low-pressure area and moves through the tropics that are moisture-rich, and therefore the strength of the showers and thunderstorms increases. During a hurricane, violent winds can come at a huge force. The force is so high that it is equivalent to half the capacity of electricity generating worldwide. The cloud and rain formation could be 400 times effective than the normal storms.
What do squirrels do during rain and harsh weather?
Squirrels, like any other animals during harsh weather conditions or rain, look for shelter. They seek shelter in hollow trees and leaf nests in branches. They mostly go for hollow trees as it would provide more protection and safety than the leaf nests. In hollow trees, they can stay drier depending on how deep they have taken the shelter inside the tree. When they take leaf nests as shelter, it is more open, and they tend to get very wet. Squirrels do not mind a small amount of rain, but when the rain gets heavier, they require some protection and shelter to stay dry.
The squirrel nests called the dreys are often built in the shape of a ball with a small opening so that the baby squirrels stay protected during such harsh weather conditions and have some form of cover. The baby squirrels stay inside these nests no matter what the weather is. Especially during harsh weather, they should stay inside their dreys as they are too young to leave the nest and protect themselves. For slight heavy rains, squirrels use their tail as a cover, like an umbrella.
When the rains grow stronger or during storms, squirrels cannot depend on the dreys. Where do squirrels go during a hurricane? They have to look for better coverage options hence the hollow trees. Dreys will get destroyed during the storms due to the force of the strong winds. Sometimes, the dreys are blown away by the winds with squirrels inside them. It kills the squirrels or affects their supply of food. Squirrels are hardly safe during such harsh climatic conditions.
Where do squirrels go during a hurricane?
Squirrels seek shelters like how they do during rains and storms. They go in search of hollow trees or bird-like nests that could provide shelter to them and protect them from the harsh winds. They try to keep themselves from being washed off to the sea or being forced inland. Some squirrels would settle down in some underground burrows. But even that does not guarantee a hundred percent protection. They can sense the change in the weather before it could even occur. They can sense the change in the pressure of winds and understand that something huge will happen. So, they try to seek and find shelter before the storms could hit the land.
Where do squirrels go during a hurricane when hibernation period ?
If the hurricanes hit during their hibernation period, the squirrels are much safer than during their active phase. During this hibernation period, the squirrels are underground in their burrows. So, they are in a pretty safe spot already when the violent winds are blowing at a tremendous rate.
Where do squirrels go during a hurricane and How to help them?
The squirrels reproduce twice a year during year one is during the spring and the other during the fall. These are the periods when they hibernate as well. So, they tend to be in a protected environment if the hurricane hits during that time. The wildlife rehabilitation centers take care of the squirrels and baby squirrels until they are healed and recovered. These people feed them, dress their wounds, and take care of them until they are completely ready to go out on their own. Once the squirrels recover, they are then dropped back to the wilderness where they belong.
Hundreds of squirrels are washed off to the shore during storms and hurricanes. Some fall from the trees and end up with minor injuries. After the storm calms down, human beings try to help and rescue all the animals. They mostly find such injured squirrels. They take them to the wildlife centers or the wildlife rehabilitation centers. Compared to other animals and birds in situations like this, the people who come for the rescue find hundreds and hundreds of squirrels.
To finish off, squirrels, like any other animals and birds, can sense the change in the weather before it could take place. They stay cautious and take shelter in hollow trees, leaf nests, burrows, or their dreys. They try to protect themselves and stay safe. They take shelter in hollow trees, mostly when the winds are too violent and destructive. They take enough precautions to keep themselves from being carried off to the sea or thrown off the trees. Yet, sometimes these things happen, and people like us rescue and protect these animals and save their species by providing all their requirements and then drop them back to their own sweet homes.