HomeTechnologyNewsDid you know that black squirrels are mutants? – Mind rebound

Did you know that black squirrels are mutants? – Mind rebound

- Advertisement -
- Advertisement -
- Advertisement -
- Advertisement -


Maslov Dmitri/Shutterstock.com

In some states, it is common to see a black squirrel. However, these black squirrels are not a species of their own; they may be a fox squirrel or a gray squirrel.

I say that it is common to see a black squirrel because Michigan, the state where I live, has an abundance of them. Many online articles point out that black squirrels are actually rare in North America.

You are probably wondering how a squirrel that should be red or gray would end up dressed in black fur. Well, it’s not a mystery, it’s a genetic mutation. Yes, black squirrels are mutants, it’s best to register them under the Mutant Registration Act.

How does this mutation occur?

Because scientists take the time to study and understand things, there has been a lot of speculation over the years as to why black squirrels exist. If you ask someone, they may think they are a species of their own. Others believe that black squirrels are adolescent gray squirrels and change color as they age. Some online articles say that black squirrels originated from Canada.

However, black squirrels are gray squirrels. Science has now possibly discovered that when gray squirrels and fox squirrels mate, a strange genetic mutation sometimes occurs resulting in babies with black fur.

The book weird michigan by Linda Godfrey has a section on black squirrels, which is where I first learned that they are “mutants.” However, recently, some researchers from various universities got together to test the DNA for these genetic abnormalities to see what they really are. It turns out that the creation cases of the black squirrel are the fault of the fox squirrel, a normally reddish-brown creature.

The mutation can occur naturally between two fox squirrels, but when a black gray squirrel is found, the reason is that it interbreds with a fox squirrel and the mutant gene is passed on to their babies.

How do you know if the black squirrel is a fox squirrel or a hybrid?

If you see a black squirrel, you may wonder if you are looking at a mutant gray squirrel or a hybrid gray and fox squirrel with the color mutation. It can be hard to tell, but there are differences between gray and fox squirrels. While most gray squirrels are gray with perhaps a tinge of red, and fox squirrels are red with some black tips to their tails, they are also all different sizes.

Gray squirrels, which are actually classified as eastern gray squirrels, are smaller than the fox squirrel. An adult gray squirrel will reach around a pound or a little more. Adult fox squirrels can weigh anywhere from one pound to three pounds. Due to the size differences between these two squirrel species, one would think that if a black squirrel is larger, it is a fox squirrel, and if it is smaller, it could be a hybrid.

How common are black squirrels really?

Black squirrels are found mainly in the United Kingdom and the United States. They may be more frequent than other squirrels of the same species, as well as other squirrel species because their black fur helps them survive winters better. Just like a black shirt on a sunny day makes you feel warmer, the black fur of black squirrels absorbs sunlight and keeps them warmer even on the coldest days.

In the UK it appears that black squirrels may make up around three quarters of the total squirrel population. Black squirrels in the United States appear to be found primarily in the eastern states, and the percentage of these mutant squirrels varies depending on which state you are in. Some articles from states like Ohio report that black squirrels were once more populous than they are now. However, articles from states like Michigan are reporting that there is an increase in the number of black squirrels that can be seen in the wild.

So the next time you see a black squirrel, know that you are witnessing something that could be somewhat unusual, depending on where you live, and that you are probably looking at a gray squirrel sporting black fur.


- Advertisement -
- Advertisement -
Stay Connected
[td_block_social_counter facebook="#" manual_count_facebook="16985" manual_count_twitter="2458" twitter="#" youtube="#" manual_count_youtube="61453" style="style3 td-social-colored" f_counters_font_family="450" f_network_font_family="450" f_network_font_weight="700" f_btn_font_family="450" f_btn_font_weight="700" tdc_css="eyJhbGwiOnsibWFyZ2luLWJvdHRvbSI6IjMwIiwiZGlzcGxheSI6IiJ9fQ=="]
Must Read
- Advertisement -
Related News
- Advertisement -