Flying Squirrels in New York?◀ Back To Blog
January 20, 2016
Yes, flying squirrels do exist here in New York, but very few people ever get to see one in action. These are nocturnal creatures. So, when they take to the air, all you're likely to see is a dark blur gliding through the night sky.
How does a squirrel fly? Well, actually, a flying squirrel doesn't fly, it glides. Quite gracefully. And, it is equipped with all the tools it needs to do this effortlessly, without crashing into things in the dark. To allow it to see at night, a flying squirrel has two very important features, bulging black eyes that enable it to see better in low light conditions and long whiskers that give it a sense of what is around it. To glide, a flying squirrel uses a furry membrane, called a paganism, between its front and back legs. This membrane acts as a sort of parachute the lets the squirrel glide and steer through the night air. There is no doubt about it, these are fascinating creatures.
More Neat Facts About Flying Squirrels
Most flying squirrels only weigh 1-4 ounces when they are full grown.
The largest type of flying squirrel, found in South Asia, can grow to be 4 feet in length!
Flying squirrels are the only nocturnal tree squirrel. Nocturnal means they sleep in the day and are active at night.
The longest recorded airborne glide for a flying squirrel was almost 90 meters, or 285 feet. (That's almost as long as an entire football field!)
Flying squirrels often nest together in large groups of up to 20 squirrels.
A baby flying squirrel will begin trying to glide at two months of age by copying its mother.
Facts About Flying Squirrel Infestations
If you happen to discover that one or more flying squirrels have taken up residence in your attic, there are some things you should know:
These animals love to chew. They will chew on just about anything, from insulation and pipes, to drywall and wiring. Although, generally speaking, flying squirrels are not harmful to humans, they certainly can be harmful to humans if they manage to chew through a wire and cause a house fire!
Flying squirrels in your attic spaces can cause your heating bills to rise. If they chew or disturb insulation, heat could be going right out your roof and walls. They also may chew holes in your walls or roof which will also let heat out and possibly let rain or snow in, which can cause further damage.
These creatures leave their urine and feces in areas they travel and not only will this make your home smell bad, these waste products can cause illness to anyone who comes in contact with them.
They may have you up at all hours of the night bumping, scraping, and thumping.
To prevent flying squirrels, or other animals from entering your home, there are proactive things you can do, like installing a chimney cap and repairing holes in your roof. But if flying squirrels have already invaded, it is time to seek professional help. At Thomas Pest Services, we have the expertise and equipment to safely and humanely remove wildlife pests. Protect your home and family by letting us put those fascinating creatures back outside where they belong.