Welcome to the Southern California Squirrel Survey!

I’m Jim Dines, a mammalogist at the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County. My colleague, Miguel Ordeñana, and I established this project to improve what is known about the distribution of squirrels in southern California. Your contributed observations will help!

Did you know that the eastern fox squirrels commonly observed in southern California are not native to the area? As their common name implies, these tree squirrels were introduced from the eastern United States about 100 years ago. We’re interested in tracking the expansion of this introduced species, but we also hope to gain valuable insight into what is happening when the introduced eastern fox squirrel comes into contact with the native western gray squirrel. Both are large bushy-tailed tree squirrels but you can tell them apart by their color: eastern gray squirrels have reddish-brown fur and are commonly seen in urban and suburban neighborhoods; western gray squirrels have silver-gray fur and live in ...more ↓

Posted on September 18, 2013 05:24 PM by jdines jdines | 1 comments | Leave a comment

Recent observations View all

Photos / Sounds

Square

What

California Ground Squirrel Otospermophilus beecheyi

Observer

cspnl

Date

August 20, 2014 11:37 AM PDT

Description

Or is it California Shrub Squirrel? In a different vicinity than those observed earlier

Photos / Sounds

What

California Ground Squirrel Otospermophilus beecheyi

Observer

cspnl

Date

August 20, 2014 11:23 AM PDT

Description

3 or 4 near the container

Photos / Sounds

14186194096_ec3bbbfe95_s

What

Fox Squirrel Sciurus niger

Observer

jaykeller

Date

May 17, 2014 10:59 AM PDT

Photos / Sounds

Square

What

California Ground Squirrel Otospermophilus beecheyi

Observer

cspnl

Date

August 12, 2014 11:23 AM PDT

Description

alias western fence squirrel

Photos / Sounds

Square

What

Fox Squirrel Sciurus niger

Observer

pandawin98

Date

April 26, 2014

Description

White and light orange/brown tummy.

Photos / Sounds

Square

What

Eastern Fox Squirrel Sciurus niger

Observer

dkuhlj

Date

August 10, 2014 01:00 PM PDT

Place

(Somewhere...)

Description

I saw this Eastern Fox Squirrel using the power lines in my backyard to travel west.

Photos / Sounds

14537670532_36d5ffaa31_s

Observer

jaykeller

Date

June 28, 2014 10:00 AM PDT

Photos / Sounds

13955735505_0489d9ce1c_s

What

Round-tailed Ground Squirrel Xerospermophilus tereticaudus

Observer

jaykeller

Date

April 19, 2014 08:20 AM PDT

Photos / Sounds

Square

What

Fox Squirrel Sciurus niger

Observer

brefong

Date

August 8, 2014 07:16 AM PDT

Photos / Sounds

What

Eastern Fox Squirrel Sciurus niger

Observer

dkuhlj

Date

August 5, 2014 07:45 PM PDT

Place

(Somewhere...)

Description

I saw this Eastern Fox Squirrel running by itself along the power lines in my backyard. It stopped in the cover of the foliage and looked (at me?) while I took its picture.

Photos / Sounds

No photos or sounds

What

Eastern Fox Squirrel Sciurus niger

Observer

reneem

Date

August 5, 2014 06:25 AM PDT

Photos / Sounds

What

California Ground Squirrel Otospermophilus beecheyi

Observer

dkuhlj

Date

August 3, 2014 02:00 PM PDT

Description

I counted six California Ground Squirrels in all.

They stayed out of the trees and seemed to occupy an embankment under some pine trees, next to a picnic area. Many holes were dug into the hillside. The dirt was crumbly and loose.

One squirrel scratched at the ground, foraging by itself.

One squirrel quickly retreated into a hole.

Two squirrels sat near the entrance to separate tunnels, watching me.

Two squirrels chased each other around a ruined brick wall.

Photos / Sounds

No photos or sounds

What

Fox Squirrel Sciurus niger

Observer

dloycross

Date

August 4, 2014 09:30 AM PDT

Description

On my picture you couldn't see the squirrel so I'm using the generic one from the app. The squirrel was using its front paws to dig up some sort of nut from the lawn. It ran to the palm tree where it hung upside down with its hind legs only. It gnawed the nut (?) it held with its front paws. It swayed from side to side to resecure the grip to the tree.

Photos / Sounds

No photos or sounds

What

Eastern Fox Squirrel Sciurus niger

Observer

reneem

Date

August 3, 2014

Description

Seen at 12:15 pm PST

Photos / Sounds

Square

What

California Ground Squirrel Otospermophilus beecheyi

Observer

keithmelliott

Date

July 30, 2014 10:27 AM PDT

Photos / Sounds

What

California Ground Squirrel Otospermophilus beecheyi

Observer

cspnl

Date

August 1, 2014 10:37 AM PDT

Description

In ditch, then on lawn near nature center, eating grass. Family? One was heavier than others.

Photos / Sounds

What

Eastern Fox Squirrel Sciurus niger

Observer

rsmart

Date

August 2, 2014 08:45 AM PDT

Description

I saw this Eastern Fox Squirrel in the Get Dirty Zone at the NHM Nature Gardens. It was by itself, looking for food on the ground.

Photos / Sounds

Square

What

Fox Squirrel Sciurus niger

Observer

nhm_nature

Date

July 12, 2014 10:02 AM PDT

Description

"Photo taken mid-July, 2014. I think he likes to eat the berries from the ficus tree. In the same tree I've seen a hummingbird nest and a blue bird nest." - Mark Brown

Photo and observation by Mark Brown, sent to nature@nhm.org.

Photos / Sounds

8407200866_039f05f247_s

What

California Ground Squirrel Otospermophilus beecheyi

Observer

m_jon

Date

December 20, 2012 12:41 PM PST

Description

ground squirrel

Photos / Sounds

13927068885_f6813a2119_s

What

California Ground Squirrel Otospermophilus beecheyi

Observer

m_jon

Date

July 25, 2013 09:34 AM PDT

Photos / Sounds

Square

What

california ground squirrel Otospermophilus beecheyi

Observer

zabbey

Date

March 11, 2014

Photos / Sounds

Square

What

White-tailed Antelope Squirrel Ammospermophilus leucurus

Observer

herptracker

Date

March 9, 2007

Description

A white-tailed antelope ground squirrel in morning light photographed in the Jumbo Rocks campground.

Photos / Sounds

3756199949_be446e5385_s

What

Eastern Fox Squirrel Sciurus niger

Observer

anita363

Date

July 25, 2009 11:06 PM EDT

Place

(Somewhere...)

Description

Will ya look at the balls on that squirrel! (Sorry, just couldn't resist.)

And yes, not long after, I bought a squirrel guard. Cute, but I couldn't afford to keep feeding them!

Native to eastern US, but introduced in Calif., and probably displacing the native species here.

Photos / Sounds

14647618003_c389ed8366_s

What

California Ground Squirrel Otospermophilus beecheyi

Observer

finatic

Date

July 9, 2014 03:06 PM PDT

Description

San Diego County, California, US

Photos / Sounds

Square

What

Eastern Fox Squirrel Sciurus niger

Date

May 21, 2014

Photos / Sounds

Square

What

Fox Squirrel Sciurus niger

Date

October 2, 2013 04:30 PM PDT

Description

2 on nature walk

Photos / Sounds

Square

What

Eastern Fox Squirrel Sciurus niger

Date

September 23, 2013 04:16 PM PDT

Description

Was seen on the Bird Platform in the Nature Gardens sitting below the Coast Live Oak and eating an acorn. Later it dug a hole to store its food.

Photos / Sounds

Square

What

Fox Squirrel Sciurus niger

Date

September 18, 2013 04:14 PM PDT

Photos / Sounds

What

California Ground Squirrel Otospermophilus beecheyi

Observer

microm

Date

May 4, 2013

Photos / Sounds

Square

What

California Ground Squirrel Otospermophilus beecheyi

Observer

microm

Date

November 10, 2013
More observations

About

Squirrels are well-known but sometimes overlooked species of the southern California landscape. For instance, not many people realize that eastern fox squirrels are nonnative or how much their range has expanded. Similarly, the decline of the native western gray squirrel has gone unnoticed. We also want to learn more about the distribution and behavior of other understudied species such as ...more ↓

15419-mini nhmordenana created this project on September 17, 2013
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