Chipmunks, Squirrels, and Prairie Dogs

Western Gray Squirrel Western Gray Squirrel
Sciurus griseus


Gray with numerous white-tipped hairs above; belly white. Backs of ears reddish brown. Long, bushy tail with bands of gray, white, and black, especially below. L 17 1/2–23" (445–593 mm); T 9 3/8"–12 1/4" (240–310 mm); HF 3–4" (76–101 mm); Wt 12–34 oz (340–964 g).

Similar Species

Eastern Fox Squirrel has bright rust belly and yellow-tipped tail hairs; is slightly larger.


1 litter per year of 3–5 young born March–June.


Large leaf nests, obvious in winter, often high in trees. Sign is same as that of Eastern Gray Squirrel.




Washington south to California


The only large gray tree squirrel in its range on the West Coast, this species is active all year, although during bad storms it may remain in its nest. In summer it uses a nest of shredded bark and sticks, usually placed at least 20 feet (6m) above the ground; in winter, it probably lives in a tree hollow. Its chief foods are pinecones, acorns, and other nuts, and some fungi, berries, and insects. This squirrel's hoarse barking call is heard mostly in late summer.