Spotted critter in my yard, looks like chipmunk/squirrell cross

MojaveLove(5 - IL)July 24, 2011

Out of nowhere there are these small critters living in our yard. I don't know what they are. They are a rodent but they are bigger than a chipmunk and smaller than a squirrel and resemble both. Their tail is short and furry but not as fluffy as a squirrel or They are brown and their backs have stripes the length of the body and spots too. They live in the ground. They laying in the shade of one of my pots, they will lay on their stomach and their body is pretty long, about three inches.

I live near forest, prairie and swamp. I feel like I should know what these are but I've lived in the city most of my life and recently moved out to the country. For example I just saw my first red-winged black bird in the last two years. Saw my first house finch the other day.

Should I be concerned about these little guys or will they leave me, my house and my plants alone?

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MojaveLove(5 - IL)

Actually I am wrong about the length of their tail, it is about the same length as their body.

    Bookmark   July 24, 2011 at 1:57PM
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morz8(Washington Coast Z8b)

Maybe this one?

Spermophilus tridecemlineatus

Here is a link that might be useful: thirteen-lined ground squirrel

    Bookmark   July 24, 2011 at 9:01PM
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MojaveLove(5 - IL)

That might be it thanks! I'll have to look into it to make doubly sure, but that is the marking. Thanks again!! Hopefully these are not pests and will just run around being cute.

    Bookmark   July 26, 2011 at 12:58AM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

I'd give them major leeway, just for the cuteness factor!

    Bookmark   July 26, 2011 at 11:20PM
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MojaveLove(5 - IL)

They are super cute and pretty funny. They will lay in the shade of the pots on my porch and sprawl out on their stomach, all limbs sticking out. Hilarious. I have read that they can be pretty bad pests but our yard isn't really a yard, it is a prairie and we live in a townhome so we have like, a few random trees and some flowers next to the porch and that's it. My only annoyance is they like to kick up the mulch everywhere.

    Bookmark   July 27, 2011 at 5:40PM
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terryr(z5a IL)

Sounds like ground squirrels. I don't have them currently at this house, i would love to though ;) I had them before and I sure didn't have any problems with them. They were fun to watch, that's for sure!

    Bookmark   July 28, 2011 at 5:56PM
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