Saturday, June 30, 2018

Coastal BC Animals: Chipmunks

Chipmunks

Joining the birds for a snack.
Up the lake at the cabin we have a pair of chipmunks that visit our float cabin almost daily.

If there is food in the bird feeder they stop by for a try to get their share. Consequently, the Juncos have to go without for a few days between fillings.

If the feeder is empty, they boldly come on the deck to see why we aren't attending to their needs. Many forest critters like to eat my crops growing in pots and containers on the decks. At least the chipmunks are polite about not digging into our growing food supply.

Visitors from Powell River report that there are few chipmunks left in town. They surmise that the growing gray and black squirrel population may be pushing the cute little guys farther into the bush.


Chipmunks can be distinguished by the stripes on their face and back. Their colouring is yellowish to brownish gray with black and white stripes. Often there is a reddish cast to their sides.


Chipmunks are very energetic and agile. We see them climb the nearly vertical granite cliffs next to the cabin.

There are four varieties listed for BC. I'm not sure which kind come to visit us. It might be a Red-Tailed. Can you help?


Here's a link to a good (and free) manual for identifications: An Identification Manual to the Small Mammals of British Columbia. -- Margy

References: BC Adventure (online) and Nature Canada (online).

24 comments:

  1. Sweet! I love chipmunks... so cute!

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    1. They always make me feel happy. - Margy

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  2. Precious Chipmunks, love them.

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    1. I would put them in the precious category, packrats not so much. They like to eat my plants which puts them on my bad guy list. - Margy

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  3. This is funny! They are dumb as bricks, but persistent.
    Tomorrow, I'm writing about my veggie garden, which consists of one cherry tomato basket. The chippies have chewed a hole in the bottom, which helps drainage, but wasn't necessary!

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    1. Not sure about the dumb part, but I heartily agree with the persistent part. They have figured out how to climb down to the seed feeder without it even swinging a bit. - Margy

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  4. Hello, the chipmunks are so cute. They do love the bird seed. Thank you for sharing your post. I appreciate the comment and visit. Happy Saturday, enjoy your weekend! PS, I appreciate you comment and visit.

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    1. I wait a few days between filling the feeders, but they seem to know within minutes when there is a new batch of food. - Margy

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    1. The only pets I have natural ones and these are the best ones. - Margy

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  6. Those chipmunks are very pretty. it's a shame they are not able to compete with the squirrels but i guess they found a good place to survive in your garden.

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    1. That was the first time I'd heard about squirrels running them out of town. - Margy

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  7. They are 'cute', but they can be villains, too. One year we had cardinals build a nest in a pine tree right outside our dining room window. So, we had a bird's eye view (pun intended) when a chipmunk came along and ate the baby cardinals! Ugh.

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    1. I haven't seen the chipmunks go after our barn swallow nests but I have had to chase a squirrel away more than once. - Margy

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  8. you have to love them :)

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    1. I love living in a place where I can enjoy wildlife. - Margy

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  9. They're very cute-- although the Juncos might disagree. I didn't know there were so many different kinds of chipmunks! In our former life, we used to have red squirrels who would all but knock on the door if the bird feeders were empty when they visited our deck.

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    1. Mine aren't very far from that. - Margy

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  10. We have several friendly chipmunks in our backyard. They readily feed from the hand. The species here is Eastern Chipmunk.

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    1. Makes sense. I don't hand feed, but to supply the goods. - Margy

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  11. They are cute critters though. Where I live I don't see any chipmunk or squirrels.

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    1. I bet they are nearby in the woods though. - Margy

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  12. I have some squirrels in my neighborhood here in central Florida. I have never seen a chipmunk here. My sister's neighborhood in Michigan has both squirrels and chipmunks. I'll have to check online references for my state to see if they're in the state. Adorable photos.

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    1. I know there is an Eastern Chipmunk. I don't know how far south it goes. - Margy

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We welcome your comments and questions. - Wayne and Margy