name: Indian giant squirrel or Malabar giant squirrel (Ratufa indica), nicknamed the rainbow squirrel
Where do you live: Forests and forests in pockets across central and southern India
What does he eat: Fruits, leaves, bark, seeds, sometimes Bird and insect eggs
Why it's cool: Although the stomach and arms of giant Indian squirrels are a creamy beige color, the rest of their shell is much more luxurious – with shades of orange, purple and red – which is why they are called “rainbow squirrels.”
These colorful creatures can grow up to 3 feet (1 meter) long, about twice the length of their American cousin. Eastern gray squirrel (Ceaurus carolinensis). They are so big that they are crowned champions The largest species of squirrel in the world Through the Guinness Book of World Records.
Related: How do squirrels remember where they buried their nuts?
Indian giant squirrels live exclusively in forests, where they live Build multiple round nests, known as Driss, high in the trees. They use thorns in the branches to support the nests and weave them together with the stems of climbing plants, before making them comfortable by stuffing the nests with leaves. Unlike many other squirrels, Indian giant squirrels Storing food in treetops.
But why are Indian giant squirrels so colorful? Scientists aren't sure, but colorful coats may help them camouflage themselves in their forest homes. One study published in 2021 reported the presence of the Indian ground squirrel Sitting completely still in the leafy branches For half an hour while the snake eagle hovered above her. “They remain quiet and calm,” the authors wrote, adding that they spread their legs and hold onto branches to help avoid detection.
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