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Callospermophilus saturatus

Cascade Golden-mantled Ground Squirrel

Order: Rodentia
Family: Sciuridae

Image of Callospermophilus saturatus
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Conservation Status: Least Concern.


Restricted to the Cascade Mountains of Washington State and British Columbia, Cascade golden-mantled Ground Squirrels are so similar to golden-mantled Ground Squirrels that some scientists consider them the same species. However, their ranges are separated by the Columbia River. Like other ground squirrels, they are active during the day and forage on the ground for a variety of leaves, fruits, flowers, and fungi. They are common in alpine habitat, forests, meadows, and sagebrush. Hibernation puts them into a deep energy-saving mode from fall through early spring. Each animal dens alone, its temperature dropping to only a few degrees above freezing and its metabolic rate slowing to about five percent of the summer rate. The long torpor is broken by brief periods when the squirrel's temperature comes up to normal. Cascade golden-mantled Ground Squirrels superficially resemble chipmunks, but are larger, and the white stripe along the flank stops at the shoulder rather than continuing onto the cheek as it does in chipmunks.

Sexual Dimorphism:
None

Length:
Average: 302 mm
Range: 286-315 mm

Weight:
Range: 200-300 g

References:

Rhoads, S.N., 1895.  New subspecies of the gray fox and Say's chipmunk, p. 43.  Proceedings of the Academy of Natural Sciences of Philadelphia, pp. 42-44.

Links:

Mammal Species of the World

Mammalian Species, American Society of Mammalogists' species account

Distribution of Callospermophilus saturatus