Mexican Grey Squirrel
By: Hannah Stimac
The Mexican Grey Squirrel is grey or black with a red belly. It has small eyes and ears. They have strong teeth for biting into their food. They have a long bushy tail. They shed twice a year and shed their tail fur once a year.
Originating from Guatemala and eastern and southern Mexico, the Mexican Grey Squirrel made its way to Florida. Hurricane Andrew brought these squirrels from Mexico to some small islands called the Florida Keys. Many thought they had been wiped out by the hurricane, but one was found swimming to the islands. Others were found on one island, Edward Island.
The Mexican Grey Squirrel eats things such as blackberries, poisonwood, pigeon plum berries, coconuts, and snails. An endangered native bird depends greatly on the pigeon plum berries, which these squirrels seem to like. Another problem is when they can’t find food. If they can’t find enough food, they eat parts of trees branches, which can kill the tree. Since they can swim, they can go to anyplace they want to. They build nests in the hollows and branches of trees.
To stop them, the people have decided to go out at night with toxin guns and shoot the toxin into the nests. The next morning they take the body and the nests to labs for research. The scientists hope to find something interesting that can stop them.
To be invasive the organism must either cause a problem or disrupt the natural order of things. If the organism doesn’t cause any problems or hurt the way of life, it’s not really invasive.
The Mexican Grey Squirrel causes a few problems. These are the only problems they have discovered so far. Hopefully, the scientists can fix this problem without having to kill them! And don’t forget to celebrate Squirrel Appreciation Day on January 21!