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Harris' Antelope Squirrel (Ammospermophilus harrisii)
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Harris' Antelope Squirrel (Ammospermophilus harrisii)

General Information: Harris' Antelope Squirrels (Ammospermophilus harrisii) are small ground squirrels seen running around the desert on hot days. They have a dark back with a white stripe on the side, light cheeks, and a white eyering. The legs usually have some reddish, and the belly is white. The underside of the tail is dark. Antelope Squirrels often hold their tail up over their back as a sunshade.

Harris' Antelope Squirrels live east of the Colorado River, while a related species, White-tailed Antelope Squirrels, live west of the Colorado River. If you visit Hoover Dam, you can see White-tails begging for food on the Nevada side, and Harris' begging for food on the Arizona side.

Harris' Antelope Squirrel (Ammospermophilus harrisii)

Antelope Squirrels are often mistaken for chipmunks, but Antelope Squirrels have white or light on the side of the face, while chipmunks have black and white stripes on the side of the face. Also, Antelope Squirrels live in lower-elevation desert areas (Creosote-Bursage Flats and Mojave Desert Scrub habitat types), while chipmunks live higher in the mountains (Pinyon-Juniper Woodlands to Alpine Tundra habitat types).

Antelope Squirrels dig burrows and are responsible for some of the holes under bushes and rocks seen in the desert. Their entrance holes tend to be about 3-inches in diameter, larger in diameter than those of the more common kangaroo rats.

Harris' Antelope Squirrel (Ammospermophilus harrisii)

Range: East of the Colorado River in Arizona and northern Mexico.

Comments: Active during the day all year, even during the heat of summer, these squirrels can survive with body temperatures as high as 108 degrees F. They use their tail as a sunshade, and they often can be seen laying with their belly pushed flat against a shady (cool) patch of ground to cool down.

For more information, see the Animal Diversity Web.

Harris' Antelope Squirrel (Ammospermophilus harrisii)

Note the underside of the tail is dark, just like the top of the tail.

Harris' Antelope Squirrel (Ammospermophilus harrisii) If you were a tasty bug or a little seed, this might be the last face you ever see!
Harris' Antelope Squirrel (Ammospermophilus harrisii) Harris' Antelope Squirrel (Ammospermophilus harrisii)
Harris' Antelope Squirrel (Ammospermophilus harrisii) Harris' Antelope Squirrel (Ammospermophilus harrisii)
Harris' Antelope Squirrel (Ammospermophilus harrisii) Harris' Antelope Squirrel (Ammospermophilus harrisii)
Harris' Antelope Squirrel (Ammospermophilus harrisii) Harris' Antelope Squirrel (Ammospermophilus harrisii)
Harris' Antelope Squirrel (Ammospermophilus harrisii) Harris' Antelope Squirrel (Ammospermophilus harrisii)
Harris' Antelope Squirrel (Ammospermophilus harrisii) Harris' Antelope Squirrel (Ammospermophilus harrisii)
Harris' Antelope Squirrel (Ammospermophilus harrisii) Harris' Antelope Squirrel (Ammospermophilus harrisii)
Harris' Antelope Squirrel (Ammospermophilus harrisii) Harris' Antelope Squirrel (Ammospermophilus harrisii)
Harris' Antelope Squirrel (Ammospermophilus harrisii) Harris' Antelope Squirrel (Ammospermophilus harrisii)
Harris' Antelope Squirrel (Ammospermophilus harrisii) Harris' Antelope Squirrel (Ammospermophilus harrisii)
Note: All distances, elevations, and other facts are approximate.
copyright; Last updated 100112

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