Flying Squirrel | Types, Adaptations, Diet, & Facts

Flying Squirrel

Do you know what a flying squirrel is? If not, you’re in for a treat! A flying squirrel is a small mammal that has flaps of skin between its front and back legs that allows it to glide through the air. They are so fun to watch! You can find them in forests and wooded areas all over the world. While they aren’t as common as other kinds of squirrels, they are still prevalent enough that spotting one should be easy. So the next time you’re out for a walk in the woods, keep your eyes peeled for these little guys! Who knows, maybe you’ll even get to see one take flight. Please keep reading to learn more about them.

Flying Squirrel scientific name

All flying squirrels have scientific names that include the word “flying.” The genus name of all flying squirrels is Glaucomys, which is derived from the Greek words glaux, meaning “owl,” and mys, meaning “mouse.” There are three species of flying squirrel found in North America: the southeastern (or southern) flying squirrel (Glaucomys volans), the northern flying squirrel (Glaucomys sabrinus), and the Humboldt’s flying squirrel (Glaucomys oregonesis). The southeastern flying squirrel is the most common species and can be found in wooded areas throughout the eastern United States.

The northern flying squirrel is found in northern forests, while the Humboldt’s flying squirrel is found in western North America. All flying squirrels are nocturnal mammals that are capable of gliding through the air thanks to a layer of skin called a patagium that stretches from their wrists to their ankles. Although they cannot actually fly, they can glide for up to 150 feet (45 meters) from tree to tree. all flying squirrels are small animals, with adults typically measuring 9-13 inches (23-33 cm) long, not including their tail.

Flying Squirrel physical appearance

The flying squirrel is a small rodent with a flattened tail and hind legs that are longer than its front legs. It has large eyes and furry, wing-like membranes (called patagia) that extend from its wrists to its ankles. When these membranes are extended, the flying squirrel can glide for long distances between trees. The flying squirrel is found in North America, Europe, and Asia. There are three species of a flying squirrel: the northern flying squirrel (Glaucomys sabrinus), the southern flying squirrel (Glaucomys volans), and the Japanese flying squirrel (Pteromys momonga). All species of flying squirrel are nocturnal animals that live in forests. They build nests out of leaves, twigs, and other materials, and they usually have two litters of babies per year. Flying squirrels eat acorns, nuts, berries, insects, and other small animals.

Flying Squirrel habitat

The flying squirrel is a small, nocturnal creature that is found in forests all across North America. These furry little animals are experts at gliding through the air, and they use their long tails to help steer themselves as they travel from tree to tree. Flying squirrels live in nests made of leaves, twigs, and bark, and they typically have a litter of two or three baby squirrels each year. Although they are not truly capable of flying, flying squirrels are excellent climbers and can often be seen scaling trees in search of food. These playful creatures play an important role in their ecosystem by helping to disperse seeds and keep the forest floor clean.

Flying Squirrel diet

Flying squirrels are small, nimble creatures that are able to glide through the air thanks to their special membranes. They are found all over the world and have a diet that consists mainly of nuts, seeds, and fruit. However, they will also eat insects and other small animals if given the opportunity. Flying squirrels are nocturnal creatures and spend most of their time hiding in trees during the day. At night, they come out to search for food. Thanks to their strong hind legs, they are able to jump great distances and land safely on branches or other surfaces. Thanks to their diet of all sorts of nutritious foods, flying squirrels are able to stay healthy and active all year long!

Flying Squirrel interesting facts

  1. Did you know that flying squirrels don’t actually fly? They’re able to glide from tree to tree thanks to a flap of skin between their legs. When they want to descend, all they have to do is point their tails downward and let gravity take over.
  2. These furry little creatures are also excellent climbers and can hang upside down from branches for hours at a time.
  3. And they’re not just found in North America – there are species of flying squirrel all over the world, including in Africa and Asia.

So the next time you see one of these acrobatic animals soaring through the air, remember that they’re not really flying – they’re just really good at gliding.

Flying Squirrel reproduction and life cycle

Flying squirrels are fascinating creatures. Though they are capable of sustained flight, they spend most of their time gliding from tree to tree. They are small animals, usually only measuring about 10 inches in length. They have furry bodies and large eyes, which help them to see at night. Flying squirrels mate in the spring and summer months. After a gestation period of about 38 days, the female flying squirrel gives birth to a litter of two to four baby flying squirrels. The babies are born blind and hairless, but they grow quickly. By the time they are two months old, they are fully furred and able to see. At six months old, they are ready to mate and start the cycle all over again. Flying squirrels typically live for two to three years in the wild, though some have been known to live up to 10 years.

Flying Squirrel threats and predators

Flying squirrels are small, nocturnal creatures that are found all over the world. They are adept at gliding from tree to tree and have even been known to travel up to 100 feet in a single glide. While they are skilled flyers, flying squirrels are also vulnerable to predators. Their main predators are owls, hawks, and cats. These predators will attack flying squirrels in their nests or while they are flying.

In order to avoid becoming prey, flying squirrels will often stay close to the ground and only come out at night when it is more difficult for predators to spot them. Additionally, flying squirrels will build their nests in places that are difficult for predators to reach, such as in the crevices of trees or on high branches. By understanding the threats and predators that flying squirrels face, we can help to protect these fascinating creatures.

Flying Squirrel


What is so special about the flying squirrel?

The flying squirrels are also called gliding squirrels, as these animal species do not possess a true powered flight that a bat or bird can do. Despite it, the flying squirrels only glide. There is a special membrane between their back and front legs, allowing them to glide via air between trees.


Flying squirrels are unique and amazing creatures. They have the ability to glide through the air for great distances by using their furry arms and legs as wings. This allows them to travel quickly from tree to tree, making it easier for them to find food and avoid predators. If you’re ever in the presence of a flying squirrel, be sure to take the time to appreciate this wonderful animal. Who knows, maybe you’ll even get lucky enough to see one take flight!

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About the Author: Kinsey Locke

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