How do Squirrels Store Food in Their Cheeks?

How do Squirrels Store Food in Their Cheeks?

Squirrels are a large family of small to medium rodents. They are members of the family Sciuridae. 

Squirrel’s diet

Most of these little guys are omnivores; they eat anything they find. Many kinds of squirrels live in trees, so they often find nuts. Sometimes they eat bird’s eggs and insects. They like to eat plants and meat. They also eat fungi and even young snakes.

Their Storing Habit 

In the pre-winter times these squirrels start to prepare for the upcoming winter by finding food and storing them. For this they go in search of food and then they collect as much food as possible they store these in the pouches in their cheeks.

Though the ground squirrel eats a wide variety of food, he’ll pack his cheek with seeds and nuts for winter storage.

During the winter, most ground squirrels go into hibernation. The underground burrow system provides a very good place for sleep, food storage, safety and raising baby squirrels. The burrows may be as deep as 4 feet below the soil and run as long as 30 feet. Dozens of ground squirrels may live together in a network of burrows. If winter isn’t severe, the ground squirrel won’t bother with hibernation.

How Do They Store?

Squirrel’s cheek pouch is made to hold things, allowing him to pack food in his mouth for easy transport. This cheek pouch is a special attribute of the ground squirrels as tree squirrels and flying squirrels don’t have this.

The cheek pouch is a specific feature that that is naturally elastic in nature These cheek pouches may extend to halfway down the length of the body of a squirrel’s body. The pouch is clearly divided between a cheek and the part below the tongue portion.

These pictures show the size of a cheek pouch.

They are a boon to these animals and they are also found in other rodent like animals, like hamsters and others. They are transport facilitators.

These beautiful animals have wonderful habits, and are really interesting to get to know.

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