American Red Squirrels are characterized by their bushy, dark red tails and their white eye circles. This one was spotted at the bird feeder at my cousin’s vacation home in western North Carolina. However, none of us had ever seen a Red Squirrel before. Where I lived in northern Indiana for many years, the squirrels were large and brown. Where I now live in northern Georgia, the squirrels are smaller and gray. American Red Squirrels are among the smallest squirrels in North America and generally are not found as far south as where we spotted this one.
“As far as our noblest hardwood forests are concerned, the animals, especially squirrels and jays, are our greatest and almost only benefactors. It is to them that we owe this gift. It is not in vain that the squirrels live in or about every forest tree, or hollow log, and every wall and heap of stones.” (Henry David Thoreau)