Iowa man fined $855 for injuring Marine while shooting squirrel

A 71-year-old Iowa City, Iowa man was fined $855 for shooting and wounding a US Marine with an air rifle in October 2021.

In April, Philip Olson, who claimed he was hunting a squirrel, pleaded guilty to misdemeanor after turning himself in to police, violating a local ordinance that prohibits the firing of toy guns and slingshots, according to the Iowa City Press-Citizen.

Accidentally shot 20-year-old Lance Cpl. He hit Heefner in the head as the Marine passed by, leaving him critically injured.

Heefner was in town on leave to see his grandparents and friends when he decided to go out to dinner with Panda Express. He was scheduled for his first deployment to Okinawa, Japan, a week after the incident, the outlet reported.

Ammunition from Olson’s BB gun struck Heefner, who was driving on the 6 Freeway. He crashed his car into the median, where police found him. The errant pellet hit Heefner in the temple, leaving him in critical condition. Doctors had to remove a part of his skull.

“It’s a tragedy that he joined the Marine Corps to serve his country and instead of being in a foreign country and getting shot, he comes to his hometown and gets shot by a stray bullet,” his father said. to the local KCRG.

Olson apologized to Heefner’s family during the trial, saying he had “wasted my life and the life of an innocent young man.”

Heefner’s father, according to The Associated Press, said the Marine is experiencing memory loss, is unable to walk unassisted and can no longer use his left arm.

Observation Post is Military Times’ one-stop shop for all things off-duty. Stories can reflect the author’s observations.

Sarah Sicard is a senior editor at Military Times. She previously served as Digital Editor for Military Times and Editor for Army Times. Her other work can be found at National Defense Magazine, Task & Purpose, and Defense News.

Alone Season 9, Episode 5 Recap and Review

History Channel Episode 5 Only, season 9, takes place during days 21-26. Eight contestants remain at the beginning of the episode.

This is a recap and review of episode 5. At the end, I will provide some guesses as to who will last until the end and who could successfully hunt a bear.

Spoilers to follow!


Treefort Guy begins his segments by highlighting his squirrel-hunting prowess. He also takes a moment to show off his shelter window, which honestly seems like it adds a lot of aesthetic value to the space. But then Adam’s stomach hurts. He is concerned that it is a parasite like giardia and finds some birch bark for tea. Luckily, he feels better the next day.


We only see Jessie briefly in this episode, where she is still building her shelter. I’ll be so disappointed if she leaves before she can finish it!

Juan Pablo

Juan Pablo scared me when he explained that he was drinking unboiled water.

He also spends time building a dock. At first, he was skeptical (possibly because he doubted his abilities after the unboiled water thing), but it turns out that the dock made fishing for him quite effective. He can cast longer and the fish seems to be easier to catch. He manages to catch six brook trout! Docks, not just for drinking beer, apparently.

karie lee

Karie Lee’s segments feel like a Bob Ross episode as she always has a positive and enthusiastic mindset. She starts out in a great mood, as usual, and she doesn’t even get frustrated when she misses a shot with a squirrel. She explains that she wants to forge a spiritual connection with the land while she is on the show and appears to be doing so. She also manages to catch a large brook trout while she is fly fishing. Karie Lee is just connecting with a smile on her face.


Most of Tom’s segment focuses on his hideout. He is the one who was building his on the side of the cliff, using the land side as a wall. He likened his shelter to a mix of “cabin, mine shaft, and giant basket,” which seemed pretty apt to me. He also used river clay and stone to create a fireplace that honestly looked like it had been thrown from someone’s cabin.

Tom also gave us a lesson on the daily trap check, explaining that it’s inhumane not to do it and that you could lose your prey if another animal takes it. He catches a decent sized snowshoe hare in his third trap and makes a rabbit stew. I think Tom is moving up in my estimation of the final contenders.


Lastly, we have Benji. He was one of my favorites last week, so this week he took an interesting turn. Guy, I told you not to eat that beaver!

Before my reasons for saying so came up, Benji talked about why he was putting off hunting a bear for a few weeks. He claimed that there was no way to preserve meat efficiently without cold weather. I never considered that!

Benji finally works on his permanent shelter, using the Wikiup style, and sharpens his axe. He also creates a fleshing beam to remove fat from beaver fur. He gets the fat equivalent of a beaver’s tail to turn into suet, and puts the fat in his tail to transport it. Is that where his future problem came from? Or was it him from eating from an animal that stayed too long after it died? Or maybe it was bad luck from another source (maybe from that grouse he shot)? Either way, Benji gets sick.

He wakes up with a terrible stomach ache and spends his time trying to remedy it with yarrow, Qigong exercises and naps. Finally, after constant burping and other less pleasant bodily experiences, she has to ask for help fearing serious illness. Is it Canada’s latent revenge for hunting our national animal? If so, Terry from last week should be careful!

It’s really too bad for Benji. He was a real contender to stay until the end, and I thought he was the most likely to catch a bear. It just shows you that sometimes the most dangerous things in the forest are not the animals but the microscopic beings that can cause an enormous amount of damage. If I ever went on the show (ha!), one of my items would be a big tub of hand sanitizer.

my review

Since Benji is out of the running, my top three based on this episode are Jessie, Adam, and Terry.

For now, Juan Pablo can stick to the bear hunt prediction because the guy constantly surprises me.

The next episode airs June 30 on the History Channel.

TS Beier is obsessed with science fiction, the ruins of the industry and Fallout. She is the author of What Branches Grow, a post-apocalyptic novel (which was a Top 5 finalist at the 2020 Kindle Book Awards and a semi-finalist in Hugh Howey’s 2021 Self-Published Science Fiction Competition), and the Burnt Ship Trilogy (space opera). She is a book reviewer, editor, freelance writer, and co-owner of Rising Action Publishing Co. She currently lives in Ontario, Canada, with her husband, two wild children, and a shepherd-mastiff.

Bird’s eye view: common ravens or fish are smarter than we think | Lifestyle

Tweeting, fellow birders! Thanks for flying in to read this column! This week I would like to talk about a very interesting neighbor that you might take for granted, as he is the favorite of our old friend and farmer, the Raven. While you may not realize it, they’re smart, scheming, and downright smart, and they really deserve an honorable mention here. So put those spooky scarecrows back in the barn and let’s take a look at this handsome and talented voyeur!

There are two types that breed in Massachusetts and can be found regularly in the New England area. These are the common crow and the fish crow, and they are both very similar in appearance (the fish crow is slightly smaller). A fairly large bird with full black plumage, long legs, and a thick bill, the common raven can always be recognized by its “squawk!” call, while the Crow Fish’s vocalization is more nasal and forceful, a sort of squawking “woof-woof!” Both species are omnivorous, feeding on fruits, grains, insects, crustaceans, small mammals, reptiles, even other birds and their chicks and eggs. They’ll also eat roadkill and even invade garbage bags (so keep barrel lids tight!). They keep food in caches, meaning they hide it away for later use (perhaps they should be called squirrel birds!) and they also congregate in large flocks, a group of which is known as a “killer.” (Someone call Agatha Christie! Quick!).

Breeding and nest building begin from March to April, the birds use the forks of tall trees to create a comfortable home. Many half-nests will be started and then discarded until the correct one is found (home search!). The young ravens actually stay with the parents for (perhaps) several seasons, and even help feed the female while she is incubating. Usually 3-6 eggs are laid between May and June, and the nesting period is around 4-6 weeks. Within a few months, the young are feeding themselves, learning the trade of being a raven. During the night they will join a roost, a large communal area where birds will sleep at night, sometimes numbering in the hundreds or even thousands.

Now I know a lot of people see these visitors as pests (especially farmers) and I admit there can be a handful, but I mentioned their intelligence earlier, and I’d like to talk about that in more detail. Through tests administered by scientists, ravens have been found to be able to distinguish specific objects and colors, as well as individual faces. They can even count and perform various complicated tasks, such as retrieving food from mazes and using sticks as tools. They have great memory ability and can remember if you’ve been good or bad to them (just like Santa Claus!). So, if you get booed by a gang of boo-birds, maybe you should issue an official apology! Their intelligence has been equated to that of a young child (ages 5-7) and they engage in abstract reasoning and thinking, and even “discuss” you when you’re not around, relaying information to their fellow ravens! (This is getting scary!).

Some additional tidbits:

Ravens and ravens are of the same genus (Corvus), with the raven being much bigger and scarier (just ask Edgar Allan Poe).

Ravens are said to hold funerals, gathering in large numbers around a fallen friend (but never touching the body).

Crows have been known to time traffic lights to crush nuts, using the cars to crack open the treats by placing them on the road during red lights. After the green lights expire and the red lights return, they swoop down to claim their powdered prize.

  • Crows in the suburbs can memorize garbage truck routes, finding the best times to forage for food (every Thursday morning!).
  • Bonus fact: The cartoon characters “Heckle and Jeckle” aren’t crows, they’re magpies.

So what to do with them? Feathered friend or feathered foe? Chances are the answer lies somewhere in the middle, depending on your location or calling. However, regardless of such a debate, everyone must say one thing: ravens are an interesting and amazing animal, and we still have a lot to learn from them. One thing is pretty certain for the future, and that is that ravens are definitely here to stay. Try to appreciate them if you can. They may surprise you in the end.

And now, says the Raven (or in this case, the Raven), comes the bad joke:

Q: Why are ravens the best dancers on Broadway?

A: Because there is no business like the “crow” business!

Yes, I know. I’m probably going to be attacked from above for that!

Happy bird watching!

The Best Material for Hunting Clothing

We have all been there. You shiver out of your sleeping bag and pile on layer after layer of clothing. You sling your backpack over your shoulders, place your weapon or bow somewhere stable, and look up at the elevation you must reach to reach your vantage point. Then you start climbing.

Sometime after the first 15 minutes, the first drop of sweat trickles down your spine. Another leaks out from under your hat through your temple. A third and a fourth accumulate in each armpit. Those singular beads eventually multiply, and before you know it, you’ve reached your crystallization point and an irreversible level of soaking. The first and second gusts of wind feel good. The third makes you tremble again.

A principle of outdoor recreation on land is truly universal. It covers all interests, levels, ages and regions. It even extends to some water activities. Say it with me, folks: staying dry means staying out. But you might be surprised to learn that some of the best pieces aren’t the ones that keep you protected from the elements around you. Instead, they protect you from the conditions your body creates from within.

That’s why First Lite partnered with 37.5 Performance Enhancing Materials in 2013. Now, most of First Lite’s products feature 37.5 technology, from Merino-blended base layers to rugged outerwear, from gloves to leggings. But what does that technology actually do? Here’s everything you need to know about the best hunting textile upgrade to date.

origin story

First Lite came to life in 2007 after founders Scott Robinson and Kenton Carruth grew tired of hunting all fall and winter in brightly colored Merino wool ski outfits. They weren’t willing to sacrifice Merino’s well-documented warmth, odor evaporation, and moisture wicking capabilities for lesser quality camouflage gear, and no one had yet figured out how to apply camouflage to Merino products. So they did it themselves.

They eventually progressed to Merino wool with a mineral enhancement that had recently become popular: activated charcoal. Hunting equipment companies found that adding activated carbon molecules to clothing fibers helped remove moisture and odor from the body at a rapid rate. So First Lite teamed up with 37.5 by Cocona, now 37.5 Performance Enhancing Materials, to take their Merino products to the next level.

“While it’s a synthetic-based technology because it has active mineral fibers, those fibers work with the merino wool instead of against it,” said Gregg Farrell, First Lite’s white glue product line manager. “Merino does a very good job of regulating body temperature, but when you put something on top of it, you create a kind of layer around it. Where a synthetic technology might limit Merino’s ability to do its job, 37.5 accentuates it.”

best material for hunting clothes (1)

These pieces are made for layering. By stacking a few garments on top of each other, each one works to draw sweat from the layer below, channeling it to a point where evaporation is much easier. Or, if you find yourself in colder weather or on a less mobile hunt, they also work to insulate and retain your body heat by reflecting it back to you. Either way, the ultimate goal of 37.5 technology is to keep your body at 37.5% relative humidity and 37.5 degrees Celsius, the ideal level of external humidity and warmth for maximum outdoor comfort.

Lifeless comfort

A common complaint with mineral-enhanced hunting clothing is that the minerals eventually wear off or wash away. Other brands use external treatments to add enhancements to their products, but those treatments come with a clock. The 37.5 First Lite pieces work a little differently.

“Charcoal and charcoal in the linings of other jackets and pants would wash out over time, whereas this is spun at a molecular level into the fabric. You can’t wash it off,” said Logan Williamson, waterfowl product line manager for First Lite. “These carbon molecules are attached to the fibers of the fabric. So you never have to worry about diminishing returns over the life of the garment.”

best material for hunting clothes (2)

Logan noted that washing these pieces actually recharges their mineral molecules by breaking the bond between the molecules and sweat, oil, dirt, or odor. The molecular matrix can become clogged with the standard by-products of a good hunt, so washing the 37.5 gear is highly recommended to restore the garment to its original state.

According to Gregg, the most reliable way to wash Merino gear with 37.5 is in cold water and then hung to dry. Find an odorless detergent, too, not only because perfumes will send white tails running down the hills, but because even those perfumes will bind to mineral fibers and clog them up again. Instead, save the textile’s capacity for your own…uh…perfume.

something for everyone

Ultimately, First Lite’s 37.5 line of technology is designed to help all hunters in one way or another. Its thermoregulatory ability aids Western big game hunters as they clamor across the mountains and rack up sweat just before hitting a peak and a strong wind. Its odor removal capabilities keep Whitetail Nuts nearly untraceable in Midwestern woods and field edges and insulates them during a long day in the stall or saddle. And for waterfowl lovers facing a constant battle between external water repellency and internal breathability, the 37.5 technology could end up being the next big thing if wicked moisture can find channels to the outermost layer.

best material for hunting clothes (3)

Therefore, trust in the power of minerals. The next time you put on the Wick Hoodie, Catalyst Soft Shell Jacket and Pants, Brambler Leggings, or just about any other piece of First Lite stashed away in your garage, know that those tiny bits of lava rock woven into your clothing they are on your side.

“It goes back to the origin of First Lite,” said Gregg. “Scott and Kenton were great backcountry skiers, they both rode mountain bikes, they both rode road bikes, they both did all these western recreational activities and they wore Merino wool to do it. Then the hunting season came and they put on the synthetics and after a day they smelled so bad they couldn’t stand it. With the Merino base so good, 37.5 is the synthetic component that complements what Merino can do. It’s a match made in heaven.”

Brandon Butler: Great Memorial Day Hunt and Fish

Many in the southern part of the Midwest have already hung up their turkey vest for the year, but up north and west, wolverines still get the heart rate up for hunters. Open water fishing has increased across the board. Walleye in Iowa, smallmouth in Ohio, and sturgeon in Minnesota are just a few examples of the vast diversity of fishing opportunities the Midwest offers.

If you’re looking for a challenge this month and want to make the most of your long Memorial Day weekend, here are a few options for an epic adventure at the end of the big month of May:

Ohio: Small Mouth of Lake Erie

Lake Erie may be most famous for walleye fishing, but anglers in the know put this Great Lake at the top of their list of destinations for large smallmouth bass. May is the time to go after them. Captain Bob Witt of Sea Breeze Charters said: “Smallmouth fishing heats up in early May. We cast tube jigs into rock piles near the shoreline. We will also use live bait. The soft swishes and the big black eyes put the fish in the boat.” If you’re looking to rack up smallmouth numbers, Lake Erie in May

shouldn’t disappoint

Michigan: Two Heart River Trout

In his short story “The Great River of Two Hearts,” Ernest Hemingway wrote: “Nick looked out into the clear brown water, colored by the rocky bottom, and watched the trout stand firm in the current with fluttering fins. As he watched them, they changed positions at quick angles, only to hold their ground again in the fast water.”

Anglers today recreate this experience by fishing the Two-Hearted River in eastern Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. The river is home to numerous species of salmonids, but brook trout are the wild and native attraction. By May, anglers should be able to reach all remote sections of the river.

South Dakota: Merriam’s Turkey

The beautiful white tips of the Merriam turkey’s tail fan are a coveted prize among hunters. Those looking to catch one of these birds should look no further than the Black Hills of South Dakota, where Merriam’s numbers are strong. Turkey season runs through May 31 in the Black Hills. Hunters must apply for a Black Hills turkey tag, but there is no deadline to do so. For all the information you need to plan a Merriam turkey hunt in the Black Hills, visit the South Dakota Game, Fish and Parks website.

Kentucky: Spring Squirrels

Kentucky has a short spring squirrel season that opens in mid-May and runs through June. With a

daily limit of 6 and a possession limit of 12, squirrels offer hunters the thrill of filling a

game bag Spring squirrel hunting is fun on its own, but the spring season gives sportsmen a

Unique launch and blast opportunity to hunt squirrels while also fishing. Canoeing on a rushing river

across public land or rowing along the shore of a public lake provides opportunities to spot

water squirrels. The Land Between the Lakes is a squirrel hunting destination where

you can double with a fishing trip.

Kansas: Turkeys

Kansas has to be in the argument for the best hunting state in the entire country. A large part of the qualification for such a bold statement comes from the excellent turkey hunting in the Sunflower State. Kansas two subspecies of wild turkey; Orientals and Rivers. The regular season runs throughout the month of May, closing on the 31st. Hunting hours are from half an hour before sunrise to sunset. Hunters can bag two turkeys during the spring season. Take a look at all the public land in the southeastern corner of the state.

Iowa “Great Lakes” walleye opener

Spirit Lake and East and West Okoboji Lakes are known as the “Great Lakes of Iowa”. This nickname could be due to how good the walleye fishing can be in these waters. Walleye season begins at these three lakes on May 1. Daily limit is 3. All walleye between 17 and 22 inches must be released. Only one walleye larger than 22 inches can be kept per day. The rest of Iowa has an ongoing walleye season.

Illinois: Lake Michigan Coho Salmon

Cohos sail up the Illinois coast in May, giving anglers the opportunity to fish for salmon from shore. Spoons, spinners, and night crawler platforms under a bobber occur along retaining walls and riprap. For a boat charter experience, Captain Rick Bentley operates Windy City Salmon from the Waukegan Harbor. He says, “Red and orange Jensen Dodgers and crawling flies remain the go-to gear for coho salmon on flat lines, flat boards, divers, and shallow mounting gear.” Captain Rick ties his own special coho flies, which are available on his website

See you on the way…

Squirrel hunting opens hunting seasons

Featured photo Wild squirrels in the woods can be hard to fool.

The blazing late-summer sun makes it hard to conceive of the idea that hunting season has opened. However, a quick check of the calendar confirms that squirrel season has been open for almost a week.

The season in Georgia runs from August 15 to February 28. But it’s hard to find someone who wants to take advantage of that early opening during the heat of summer. Most hunters wait for the first frost to look for bushy tails, while many others don’t bother until deer season ends in January.

However, squirrel hunting has a special appeal for many hunters. Those gray streaks running through the trees are often the first game many hunters cut their teeth on. That was especially true for sportsmen who grew up in the 1960s to 1980s, before whitetails were plentiful.

The 2021-22 PA hunting season begins September 1; many changes facing hunters this year | Outdoor

Pennsylvania’s 2021-22 hunting season begins in earnest on Wednesday, with the opening of the Canada pigeon and goose seasons.

There are many changes for hunters to follow this year. The following are some of the most prominent.


Once again, three Sundays will be open for general hunting this fall. What is added is small game.

The three open Sundays for hunting will be November 14, November 21 and November 28. Small game deer and archery will be open for hunting on November 14; small game, archery deer and bear will be open for hunting on Nov. 21; and the gun deer will be open for hunting on November 28.

Turkeys and migratory birds are not open to Sunday hunting.


Both antlerless and antlerless deer will be legal hunting during the entire statewide two-week firearm deer season, from November 27 to December 2. eleven

In addition, the extended firearm antlerless deer season after Christmas will be open in all Wildlife Management Units 2B, 5C and 5D, from December 27 to January 1. 29

Previously, that end-of-season firearms hunt was only open in Special Regulations Area counties within those WMUs. This year, the search will be open at those three WMUs.


As we’ve discussed before on this page, every hunter statewide this fall can now carry up to six dehorned licenses at a time.

And as long as the allotments hold, a hunter can replace those tags as they fill up.

So let’s say I have six tags and I shoot two females. If there are any tags left anywhere in the state, I can go buy two more.

Pennsylvania began the third round of tag sales on August 16. Any hunter who has three tags can go buy three more without a prescription at any county treasurer’s office starting Sept. 13. (You can also apply by mail.)

As of early last week, WMUs 1B, 2F, 2G, 2H, 3A, 3B, 3C, 4B, 4C, and 4E had all sold out their tags.

WMU 5B, which covers Lancaster and surrounding counties, still had 6,900 remaining.

The WMUs with more than 20,000 tags remaining are WMU 2B, with 42,366; WMU 5C, with 31,391; WMU 4A, with 28,385; and WMU 2A, with 23,522.


Centerfire and rimfire rifles and pistols will no longer be allowed for fall turkey hunting anywhere in Pennsylvania.

The Game Commission notes that this change is not made in the name of safety, but rather to limit the fall harvest of turkeys, which includes chickens.

Turkey populations have been struggling in many parts of Pennsylvania, and the agency believes eliminating rifles and handguns will help reduce the number of turkeys taken by hunters.

In addition, the use of straight wall centerfire cartridges is permitted within the Special Regulations Areas.

This rule is not in the Hunting & Trapping Digest because it was approved in late July, but the new rule will apply to the 2021-22 firearm deer seasons.

Popular straight wall cartridges used by deer hunters include the 350 Winchester Legend, .444 Marlin, .450 Bushmaster, and .45-70 Government.

Basically, these are weapons with a maximum effective range of 200 yards, just like modern firearms.


Night vision and thermal optics are legal for use when hunting fur-bearing animals, except porcupines.

This rule change was actually made last year, following a change in state law, but it’s only being included in Hunting & Trapping Digest this year for the first time.

These optics are very popular throughout the country for hunting foxes and coyotes at night.


Hunters here have been dealing with the CWD rules for the last few years. The Gambling Commission has extended those rules for the 2021-22 season.

Most notable is the new ban on bringing “high risk” parts of deer, elk, and other cervids into Pennsylvania from anywhere else in the world.

Previously, the ban only applied to places outside of Pennsylvania where CWD was known to exist. Now it applies to everyone.

Prohibited high-risk parts are the head, skull plate with attached antlers if brain matter is present, cap if brain matter or spinal cord tissue is present, spinal cord, spleen, upper canine teeth if roots or other soft tissues, unfinished. taxidermy mounts and brain-tanned leathers.

Another rule change this year prohibits moving high-risk parties outside of the CWD Establishment Area, which is a swath of south-central Pennsylvania that includes and around Bedford and Fulton counties.

A large portion of Lancaster County, stretching from West Cocalico Township to Drumore Township, falls within Disease Management Area 4, following the discovery of CWD among captive deer at a farm in the Lancaster County area. Denver in 2018.

Among the special rules is a ban on moving high-risk parts out of the DMA.

So how do hunters deal with these prohibitions if they hunt deer outside of Pennsylvania and want to bring them home, or if they want to take a dead deer outside of a DMA?

Butchered meat is fine to move as long as there is no brain or spinal cord matter or spleen. Cleaned skins and skulls can also be moved, including finished taxidermy mounts.

Historical History of the Ohio Squirrel Population

southern flying squirrel
The southern flying squirrel is perhaps the most common of Ohio’s four tree squirrel species, but this nocturnal mammal is rarely seen. Flying squirrels have a flap of skin that runs from their wrist to their ankle and allows them to glide from tree to tree. (Tim Daniel, Ohio Division of Wildlife, photo)

It’s hard to imagine hordes of squirrels swarming over farmland and decimating crops. But that’s what was happening in Ohio in the early 19th century.

The “plague” of eastern gray squirrels caused early settlers “famine and suffering,” as one author put it, to the point that the state legislature put a bounty on their bobbleheads.

In 1807, legislators said that each county taxpayer also had to submit the number of squirrel scalps required by their municipality. The number could be “not less than 10” or “exceed 100”, according to a 1948 study by Charles Dambach, Ohio State University Department of Zoology and Entomology.

The law even imposed a penalty of three cents per head of hair on taxpayers who did not meet the quota.

The kind of dense hardwood forests that covered Ohio in pre-settlement days are the preferred habitat of eastern gray squirrels. When European settlers arrived, they cleared the forests to build houses and establish farms, leaving the squirrels homeless and without the nuts, seeds, and fruits on which their lives depend.

Desperate, the grays migrated by the thousands, perhaps millions, to the farm fields, gobbling up young plants and leaving the pioneers with empty barns and pantries. Sometimes it would take a herd a month to move through an area, according to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources website.

Adding to the generosity, a particularly harsh winter in 1807-08 nearly wiped out squirrels from some areas of the state. Perhaps that is why the legislature repealed the squirrel scalp quota law in 1809.

And where was the familiar brown fox squirrel in all of this? Mostly absent. Fox squirrels prefer wooded terrain of 10 to 20 acres that border open agricultural fields or woods that border rivers and streams, according to the ODNR. It wasn’t until settlers cleared the dense forests that fox squirrels began migrating to Ohio from the plains of the Midwest.

Still, they may not have fared much better than their gray cousins ​​who were blacklisted by the state. Eastern Fox Squirrels are a delightful addition to pots and are 50% larger than Grays. Squirrels were the last game animals in Ohio to gain the protection of a limited hunting season, and that wasn’t until the late 1880s.

ohio squirrels

The four types of squirrels that currently call Ohio home are the eastern gray, eastern fox, red squirrel, and southern flying squirrel. Of these, the flying squirrel may have the largest population, according to the ODNR, though that would be difficult to prove since flying squirrels are strictly nocturnal.

“I’ve never seen one, even though I’ve been to places where I know they exist,” said Mark Wiley, a wildlife biologist with the Ohio Division of Wildlife.

They also aren’t hunted, said Wiley, whose responsibilities include monitoring the harvest of small game species. Squirrel season is from September 1 to January 1, and the statewide bag limit is six per day. The types listed in the hunting regulations as legal are gray, fox, red, and black squirrels.

With its reddish color, white belly, and bushy tail, the red squirrel is the smallest tree squirrel in Ohio. It is also called a pine squirrel because it prefers to live in mature coniferous forests.

Unlike its gray and fox relatives, the red squirrel does not bury food to consume at a later date. Instead, it makes piles or “junks” of pineapples that can be 30 feet wide and more than a foot deep, according to the Mammals of Ohio Field Guide.

Interestingly, the squirrels listed as “black” in Ohio hunting regulations are actually gray squirrels. They have a genetic condition called melanism that makes their fur darker, Wiley said.

While they are actually gray squirrels, black squirrels are listed in the regulations “just so people know it’s legal to hunt them,” he said. Gray squirrels with melanin variations can also be white and brown.

varied diets

The diets of the four Ohio squirrels differ. Southern flying squirrels eat hickory nuts, acorns, wild cherry pits, and other seeds, as well as insects, fungi, grapes, and the bark of some hardwood trees. Red squirrels eat buds and flowers in spring and nuts, fruits and seeds from cones in fall and winter.

Gray squirrels hang out in hardwood forests, but are also found in old-growth trees in urban and suburban parks, cemeteries, and backyards. They feed on the nuts, seeds and fruits of the trees, which together are called “mast”. Wiley said their rates of reproduction and winter survival in the spring can be affected if the “harvest” of masts is not good in the fall.

Fox squirrels also feed on mast, but their diets include corn and the “waste grain” that combinations leave in fields, he said. Therefore, the highest populations of fox squirrels tend to be in the agricultural areas of central and western Ohio.

And since they can still eat grain in the winter, fox squirrel numbers are less dependent on spar production than gray, though populations of both appear to be stable in recent years, Wiley said.


Far from being a pest, squirrels are now considered tremendous assets to the natural environment. Gray squirrels and foxes’ habit of burying food for future consumption, called caching, “is vitally important to our forest systems,” he said. “They only come back to discover a fraction of the acorns or other nuts that they bury, so they are actually planting seeds that then sprout.”

There is no evidence that squirrels today invade crop fields, ripping newly planted seeds from the ground or gobbling up young plants. At most, some can become nuisances chewing on wires or finding their way into attics.

In those cases, it’s best to call a licensed professional to remove them, Wiley said.

Scalps are not required.


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