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Behavior Feedback

by Ron Kurtus

Readers have sent in a total of 281 comments and questions on Behavior issues. They are listed according to date.

You can read them to further your understanding of the subject.



List of most recent 15 letters

Title

Topic

Country

Squirrel made a home in the feeder Squirrels USA
 
Squiirels are acting crazy Squirrels USA
 
Squirrels claimed Mango tree as their own Squirrel Defenses Sri Lanka
 
Consequences of squirrel losing tail Squirrel Defenses USA
 
Bird is screaming at night Hookbills USA
 
Will a squirrel's tail grow back? Squirrel Defenses USA
 
Source for squirrel losing tail Squirrel Defenses Canada
 
Smiling makes one feel better General USA
 
Pitch in squirrel's fur Squirrels USA
 
What is a normal person? General Philippines
 
Why would a gray squirrel kill another squirrel? Squirrels USA
 
What are types of behavior? Special Types Philippines
 
How did squirrel know there were seeds in the feeder? Squirrels USA
 
Are our behaviors genetically inherited? Special Types Uganda
 
Squirrel wanted to come into my house Squirrels USA
 

Next 15 letters

 





Squirrels

Squirrel made a home in the feeder

May 14, 2017

Question

OK, I hope this one does not stump you, but I had bought many months ago, a metal squirrel feeder with a lid, and my Wife and I have enjoyed watching them, eat, play, get closer and more trustworthy of us.

But a couple of days ago a very strange thing occurred. As I was standing on our deck looking at the squirrel feeder over on the fence, something looked odd, so I went over to look. A squirrel had climbed INSIDE, with the lid closed and appeared all curled up, either asleep or I was afraid had died. I wasn't sure what to do. I finally rousted him awake (Whew, wasn't dead), but he sure appeared afraid.

I went to prop the lid open, looking for something to use, figuring if I propped it open, he'd leave. Well minutes later I came up with something (He had plenty of time to escape while I was looking, but hadn't). While I was in the process of trying to prop the lid open, the squirrel came flying out of there, startling the CRAP out of me>>LOL.

Well I figured, lesson learned for him or HERS>>LOL. Won't do that again. Well late this afternoon, early evening, there it was again. It took me longer to prompt it to leave, and I decided to take the feeder down, and plan to give it and the near new bag of feed away.

But I am still wondering, why this behavior, why now, this one squirrel after so many months??? Didn't appear ill, because it ran like the dickens.

Steve - USA (28046)

Answer

It sounds to me like the squirrel thought it found a good home that included a source of food. Of course, you frightened the critter when you tried to prop open the lid.

We had a squirrel feeder on our back deck and supplied it with peanuts. But then one of them ate a hole in the sliding screen door and would start to come into the kitchen to beg for food. We then removed the feeder to discourage them.

They are clever little animals and fun to watch, but they can be a nuisance too.

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Squirrels

Squiirels are acting crazy

June 10, 2015

Question

I have seen this on more than one occasion. Squirrel looks healthy, but they don't seem right in the head. It will appear to throw it self to the ground and do flips in the air. Roll and tumble. Run in short bursts and repeated the same actions. I am in hopes that you are able to answer some of these questions for me. Should I be concerned? Thank you for your time. DKD

Debbie - USA (26084)

Answer

Adolescent squirrels can tend to act crazy, especially during mating season. It may be an effort to impress a possible mate or just to have fun.

Some people wondered if it was a sign of rabies. However, that is doubtful, since very few squirrels catch the disease.

At the very least, observe and enjoy their antics.

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Squirrel Defenses

Squirrels claimed Mango tree as their own

May 30, 2015

Question

Dear Sir,
In my back yard I have a small mango tree. When there are fruits it's inhabited by two squirrels only. However about 20m away there was another Mango tree where about 10 -12 squirrels come and eat mangos, but they never come to my Mango tree. So we happily eat mangoes with these two who may eat about 8 - 10 out of about 300 or so that are available through out the season.

Recently my neighbour cut his tree. We were scared that all those squirrels would attack our tree, but to our surprise non did. Does this mean that squirrels have their own territory and do not allow others to come to their location? I know that such a trait is there with tigers, cheetas etc.
Please enlighten me.

Kind regards.

Nalin - Sri Lanka (26041)

Answer

It certainly looks like the two squirrels in your Mango tree had staked out their claim to the tree, probably through some urine markings. Perhaps they also had shown aggression toward other squirrels that wanted to eat from "their tree", such that the others did not want to take any chances trying to get the mangoes.

Since there are probably many other places they can go to get their food, they just moved on to a different territory.

Marking their own territory is a good way to avoid costly fights among the various animals.

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Squirrel Defenses

Consequences of squirrel losing tail

January 13, 2015

Question

There is a squirrel in my back yard whose tail is absent. What are the consequences of the loss of this appendage for the squirrel?

Thank you for answering.

Joanne - USA (25700)

Answer

Sometimes a squirrel will lose part of its tail when trying to get away from a predator. A major use for the tail is to help with balance, although it is also used for communication, as well as warmth when sleeping.

Hopefully, the little fellow will be able to get by without its tail.

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Hookbills

Bird is screaming at night

September 4, 2014

Question

Hi,
Thank you so much for reading this.

I live in Auburn California and for the last several nights, between 2 and 5 am something is screaming all by itself. It fades then gets louder and closer then seems to fly away again yet I cant see or hear any kind of wings. My backyard is all natural oak like a forest. The screams sound like between an old small dog or even an old lady. Its deafening.

Upon much investigation its gotta be some kind of Hook bill.

The screams are heartbreaking. Is there anything I can do to help him? Its calling for something I don't think we'll ever find. I just want to hold him and tell him everything is o.k.

I know this is stupid, but maybe I can find a way to comfort him. Is that possible?

Tonight is the third night. I'll hear if he's still out there. If he is, I'll email you back. If he isn't, I guess there's no reason you'd have to email me back as well.

Thank You for your time,

Oona - USA (25337)

Answer

If the screaming happened only one night, I'd guess it was an animal caught by a coyote or such. But several nights in a row, it sure sounds like some sort of bird.

The screams or squawks may not be calls of distress, but perhaps some normal noise-making, especially if it happens about the same time in the late night. Could it be a mating call?

If it is a pet hook bill that got lose, you might see it during the day.

You might check with the Audubon Society in California to see if there is something you can do.

It is nice that you are concerned. Best wishes on helping out our feathered friend.

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Squirrel Defenses

Will a squirrel's tail grow back?

May 3, 2014

Question

If a squirrel loses it's tail will it grow back?

Ann - USA (24919)

Answer

Apparently, it partially grows back, resulting in a stump for a tail. Where the bones in the tail have been lost, they will not rejuvenate.

People have reported seeing squirrels with a furry stump for a tail.

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Squirrel Defenses

Source for squirrel losing tail

April 29, 2014

Question

How does a squirrel's tail break off so easily. Can you please tell me your source for this.

Marley - Canada (24908)

Answer

I don't think the squirrel's tail breaks off easily, but it will break if grabbed by a person or other animal. There aren't many good resources on this.

The Univ. of California-Davis Wiki has a mention of it in answer to a question.

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General

Smiling makes one feel better

February 15, 2014

Question

PS. :}:}:} smiling does make one feel better! Thanks again,

Claudia - USA (24518)

Answer

Not only does smiling make you feel better, it also makes most other people feel better too.

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Squirrels

Pitch in squirrel's fur

September 27, 2013

Question

why don't squirrels have pitch in their fur?

Tina - USA (24058)

Answer

I'm not sure what you mean by "pitch in their fur".

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General

What is a normal person?

June 11, 2013

Question

being a normal person

merah - Philippines (23771)

Answer

A normal person is one who behaves in a way that is consistent or similar to most other people. However, this varies with different groups or cultures.

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Squirrels

Why would a gray squirrel kill another squirrel?

May 27, 2013

Question

why would a gray squirrel kill and chew off the head of another gray squirrel I saw this happen I never seen this before it happened at the welcome center in KY

elizabeth - USA (23724)

Answer

Sometimes male squirrels will fight with rivals and sometimes get pretty nasty, such that they kill them. Females will also fight to defend their your. Males will also sometimes kill the young of rival male.

You wouldn't think squirrels would do such things, but it is not uncommon with other animal species.

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Special Types

What are types of behavior?

November 23, 2012

Question

types of behavior? please help

Don Henry - Philippines (23046)

Answer

Behavior is how a person acts and responds to some stimulus.

One view is that there are three main types of behavior: passive, assertive, and aggressive. This concerns how people act toward activities and other people. There can also be a combination of those types.

There is also a view that a person behaves according to his or her personality.

Finally, there is the view that people behave according to their training, as well as their personality. For example, an aggressive child may be taught to behave in a better manner.

As you can see, it can be a complex topic.

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Squirrels

How did squirrel know there were seeds in the feeder?

May 15, 2012

Question

my bird feeder has been empty at least two weeks now.i put new seed in this morning at about eleven oclock i hadd a squarelin it.how did he know there was new seed in it.before for two weeks no sign of the rodent.thank you.

forest - USA (22652)

Answer

Squirrels have good noses and can smell the seeds. Their good sense of smell is how they find the nuts they bury.

The squirrel could have been doing his daily rounds and could smell that you had put the bird seeds in the feeder.

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Special Types

Are our behaviors genetically inherited?

April 2, 2012

Question

my question is, Are our behaviors genetically inherited or are as a result of the environment? has culture played some roles in the formation of our behaviors, how?
Thanks.

Katandi - Uganda (22552)

Answer

There has been a debate among scientists concerning behavior called "Nature versus Nurture". In other words, whether it is .

For some types of behavior, genetics plays a major role, while other behaviors it is the environment or training that determines the behavior. So, in all behaviors, the result is a mixture of genetics and environment in varying proportions.

For example, young children behave in a basically selfish manner. However, over the years, they learn to have a behavior of sharing with others. Of course, there are some adults who never learn to share.

A culture sets rules and standards where they expect members to adhere to those standards. A person who does not adapt his behavior to cultural rules can be ostracized from the group.

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Squirrels

Squirrel wanted to come into my house

April 1, 2012

Question

Hi,
There was a squirrel that was on my porch the other day and when I approached he hid behind the large flower pots and even tried to jump into a closed window. That seemed normal to me but when I walked away I thought it would run off but I checked a couple of minutes later and it was still on the porch but now sitting next to the door. Eventually he left.
I then went inside and had left the door slightly open and as I was going back out, there he was. He looked as if he was about to come inside if I hadn't shown up in the doorway. It seemed odd to me. Also he seemed to have a skin issue and not a lot of fur on his back and tail. Is he diseased? - thanks for your help

Greg - USA (22548)

Answer

I used to feed squirrels peanuts on our back porch. Certain squirrels would come at specific times of the day. However, soon they got brave and would come right inside when I opened the screen door. Since then, I stopped feeding them, but occasionally one would come up to the door like the "good old days".

It is possible that someone in your neighborhood has been feeding the squirrels, so this fellow though he'd try a different house.

Some squirrels can get skin disease or mites that cause the skin to get raw or to lose some hair. It isn't anything to worry about, although it may be uncomfortable for the little critter.

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