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Into the drink: observation of a novel hunting technique employed by an Eastern Gray Squirrel (Sciurus carolinensis)

Alex O. Sutton, Matthew Fuirst, Kristen Bill

Abstract


Observations of typically herbivorous species have shown that animals will opportunistically eat animal tissue that is either scavenged or hunted. Squirrels from a number of genera have been observed to hunt prey and consume meat in terrestrial ecosystems. Here we provide evidence of a novel hunting strategy employed by an Eastern Gray Squirrel (Sciurus carolinensis), which has not previously been observed hunting aquatic prey. More rigorous observational studies are needed to determine the extent of this behaviour in Eastern Gray Squirrel populations and whether fishing is a common foraging behaviour for this species.


Keywords


Eastern Gray Squirrel; fishing; foraging; hunting; predation; Sciurus carolinensis; swimming

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.22621/cfn.v134i1.2331



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