Diet and tree use of Abert's squirrels (Sciurus aberti) in a mixed-conifer forest

Andrew J. Edelman, John Koprowski

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

14 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Abert's squirrels (Sciurus aberti) are reported to be dependent on ponderosa pine (Pinus ponderosa) forests for food, cover, and nest sites. Introduced Abert's squirrels in the Pinaleño Mountains of Arizona, however, occupy forests that contain little to no ponderosa pine. We documented diet and tree use of Abert's squirrels in mixed-conifer forests of the Pinaleno Mountains using observations of marked animals. Individuals ate similar food items as Abert's squirrels in ponderosa pine forests, including seeds, inner bark, buds, and fungi, but 5 conifer species were used as food sources. Douglas-fir (Pseudotsuga menziesii) and southwestern white pine (Pinus strobiformis) were the most frequently eaten conifer species. Abert's squirrels also were observed in all tree species. Our results suggest that the dependence of Abert's squirrels on ponderosa pine is not as strong as previously reported.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)461-465
Number of pages5
JournalSouthwestern Naturalist
Volume50
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 2005

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Sciurus
squirrels
mixed forests
Pinus ponderosa
coniferous forests
coniferous tree
diet
food
Pseudotsuga menziesii
conifers
mountain
nest site
Pinus
bud
mountains
bark
fungus
seed
nesting sites
animal

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology

Cite this

Diet and tree use of Abert's squirrels (Sciurus aberti) in a mixed-conifer forest. / Edelman, Andrew J.; Koprowski, John.

In: Southwestern Naturalist, Vol. 50, No. 4, 12.2005, p. 461-465.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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