Can Squirrels Fly?

You happen to be watching your bird feeder at night. You see something that looks like it flew on it but was definitely not a bird. What could it be? Most likely, you have a flying squirrel visitor. These charismatic seed thieves are common in Massachusetts but are not usually seen because of their nocturnal habits.

Southern Flying Squirrel © Nadine Ronan

Don’t let their name fool you—flying squirrels don’t actually fly. Rather they have a built-in “paraglider,” a membrane that stretches between the legs and lets them soar as far as 150 feet. Like other cavity nesters, they will sometimes use birdhouses for nesting or protection.

Watch Flying Squirrels in Action

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About Hillary T.

Where: Mass Audubon Headquarters, Lincoln Who: Massachusetts transplant by way of Florida and New York. Raising two young girls, who she hopes will be budding naturalists Favorite part of the job: Learning something new every day from some of the smartest and most enthusiastic groups of people

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