Australia is home to two types of squirrels, the palm squirrel, and the grey squirrel. These small, furry mammals are a common sight in many parts of Australia and are known for their nut-eating skills.
But what is the difference between the two types of squirrels? And why are they so famous in Australia? Let’s take a look at these questions and more in this article!
Northern Palm Squirrel
The northern palm squirrel is a small, arboreal rodent that is found in the forests of northern Australia. This little squirrel is very agile and has a long tail that it uses to help it balance while climbing through the trees.
This squirrel is also an excellent swimmer and can often be seen swimming in the rivers and lakes of its habitats.
The northern palm squirrel is mostly brown in coloration with a light-colored belly. This squirrel has large eyes and furry ears. The northern palm squirrel is an omnivorous animal and feeds on fruits, nuts, seeds, insects, and even small reptiles.
These squirrels are an important part of the ecosystem in which it lives. This little rodent helps to disperse the seeds of the plants that it eats and also provides food for predators such as birds of prey and snakes.
American Grey Squirrel
The American grey squirrel is a species of rodent that is native to the eastern United States and southern Canada. This squirrel is also commonly known as the eastern grey squirrel or the common grey squirrel. The American grey squirrel has also been introduced to many other parts of the world including Europe, Asia, and Australia.
The American grey squirrel is a large squirrel with a body length of up to 30 cm (12 in) and a tail length of up to 15 cm (6 in). The back of this squirrel is grey or brown in color while the belly is white. This squirrel feeds on nuts, seeds, fruits, and insects.
The American grey squirrel is an important part of the ecosystem in which it lives. This little rodent helps to disperse the seeds of the plants that it eats, which helps these plants to grow and thrive.
These squirrels are also an important prey species for many predators such as birds of prey and foxes.
The American grey squirrel is a very successful species and its population is not currently considered to be at risk. However, this squirrel is sometimes considered to be a pest in some areas because it can damage trees by eating their bark or nesting inside them.
In some parts of the world, such as Britain, the American grey squirrel is considered to be an invasive species because it competes with and sometimes outcompetes the native European red squirrel for food and habitat.
As a result, many efforts are being made to control or eradicate populations of this species in some areas.
Does Australia Have Native Squirrels
No, Australia does not have any native squirrel species. There are a number of possible explanations for this. It is speculated that when Australia was first settled by humans, there were no native squirrels because they had all been hunted to extinction by the Aboriginal people.
It is also possible that the climate in Australia is not conducive to supporting squirrel populations. Whatever the reason, the fact remains that there are no native squirrels in Australia.