Daily Creature 89: Southern Flying Squirrel

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Southern Flying Squirrel (Glaucomys volans) Photographed in Chapel Hill, North Carolina, USA.

Southern Flying Squirrel

(Glaucomys volans)

I used to volunteer at a wildlife rehabilitation center in Mebane, North Carolina and when babies came in, volunteers had to bring them home to nurse them throughout the night. One night I had the great privilege of taking home a pair of orphaned baby Southern Flying Squirrels. I set my alarm every few hours and nursed them with a tiny syringe. Of all the animals I worked with during my years at the shelter, there were none quite so docile, trusting, friendly, and adorable as these two flying squirrels. I set up a mini studio in my bedroom and snapped a couple photos of them on sticks. The next day when returning them to the shelter, I took a few photos with them in the woods nearby. That is how I got these awesome portraits of a pair of wild juvenile flying squirrels. Once the babies were old enough to fend for themselves they were released back into the wild!

Juvenile Southern Flying Squirrels (Glaucomys volans) Mebane, North Carolina, USA.
Juvenile Southern Flying Squirrels (Glaucomys volans) Mebane, North Carolina, USA.

Of course the flying squirrel doesn’t actually “fly”. It is more of a glider. Still, they can travel impressive distances (upwards of 150 feet!) and steer through the air with great accuracy. Although the Southern Flying Squirrel is found throughout the eastern United States, you are not likely to ever see one because they are nocturnal. But perhaps you have a nest of them in the cavity of an old tree right in your own backyard!

Juvenile Southern Flying Squirrels no background (Glaucomys volans) Chapel Hill, NC
Juvenile Southern Flying Squirrels (Glaucomys volans)

Photographed in Chapel Hill, North Carolina, USA.

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