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Arctic Ground Squirrel

Spermophilus parryii

Order Rodentia
Family

Sciuridae


arctic ground squirrel

Yukon Government Photo

Also known as: Sik-sik, Gopher

Fast Facts

Distribution in Yukon
Length 39 cm Distribution of Arctic Ground Squirrels
Weight 700 g
Lifespan 9 years
Habitat
Predators Raptors, every carnivore from Ermine to Grizzly Bears

Conservation Status

Yukon S5 (Secure)
Global G5 (Secure
Yukon population estimate:   Not determined

 

Description

Behaviour

Social animals that live in scattered colonies to allow for greater safety from predators by having many eyes on watch.  They are not territorial but males will defend a small home-range from other males. Arctic Ground Squirrels are true hibernators from early-October to mid-April. 

Diet

Seeds, leaves, flowers, berries, leaf buds, catkins, mushrooms, carrion.  

Sights and sounds

Melanistic (Black) Arctic Ground Squirrel

Arctic Ground Squirrel track

Signs

Melanistic (black) Arctic Ground Squirrels can sometimes be seen around Jake's Corner

Tracks

Front: 1.9x1.5 cm Hind: 2.5x1.9 cm

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Sound

Peep

 

 

 

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Last Updated: July 07, 2014 | © 2014 Government of Yukon | Copyright | Privacy Statement | Disclaimer