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Squirrels are biting off oak branches

Updated: Apr 22, 2020

If you ever wondered whether small animals,  like squirrels, understand the principle of gravity, look no further than Champlain Park’s squirrels for the answer.

The rats with fluffy tails that inhabit the neighbourhood completely understand gravity. They are using physics to get acorns into their stomachs. How? By snipping off small branches of bur oak trees and then collecting the acorns that fall to the ground as part of a green bundle.

bur oak acorn sept 2014

Even though the bur oak’s acorns are green in early September, squirrels are happy to release them from the crown of these mammoth trees. Could it be that green acorns are easier to eat than the ones that harden and ripen as autumn approaches?

Now, when you see a litter of twigs and leaves under bur oaks, you’ll know who has been working hard to stay alive.  You won’t see many acorns on the branches because that’s the treasure they are collecting, or eating. --Debra Huron

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