If you’ve been reading this blog for a while, you probably know that our Senior Researcher and Twitter guru Marilyn Terrell (@Marilyn_Res) had a hand in making this little fellow (below) go viral about a year ago. (The backstory: Marilyn noticed the cuteness of the now famous Banff Squirrel photo and blogged about it here. It was picked up by news outlets around the world, got its own internet meme, and is now a celebrated mascot in Banff with its own Twitter feed.)
Well as it happens, I was talking with a few of my colleagues yesterday about how squirrels seem to evoke undue interest in people. A photo of a squirrel in India was one of the most retweeted posts from the @NatGeoSociety Twitter feed last week. And hordes of tourists are often seen taking photos of squirrels in the D.C. area because the city has a preponderance of black squirrels. Why? Eighteen black squirrels from Canada were released at the National Zoo back in 1902, when Theodore Roosevelt was president, in an effort to repopulate the breed. They’re now found throughout the District, and the subject of fascination by locals and visitors alike. (And I’ll add to the mix my own personal fascination: I’ve never seen a baby squirrel. Though I know they exist, I’ve yet to see one in the wild.)
So imagine my surprise to learn that today of all days is Squirrel Appreciation Day. To celebrate, I’ve assembled this lovely collection of squirrels from around the world from the thousands that have been submitted to our My Shot online photo site. Have a great squirrel pic to add to the mix? Submit it to MyShot and leave a link to it in the comments.
“Red squirrel in the snow. Winter 2010 in Poland was long and really severe.” Photograph by Dorota Walczak, My Shot.
“A shot of the Malabar giant squirrel taken in Mudumalai forest in the state of Tamil Nadu, India. Known to be very elusive, the Malabar giant squirrel is endemic to peninsular India and is on the IUCN list of threatened species.” Photograph by Shireen Ali, My Shot
[Ed. A cousin to the celebrity squirrel, this is another one found at Banff.] “This ground squirrel looked at me out of his nest. Picture taken in Banff National Park, Canada.” Photograph by Jacky Weiland, My Shot
“A squirrel eating a piece of fruit at Mayanar National Park in Tanzania.” Photograph by Sajjad Fasal, My Shot
“Ground squirrel picture taken in Fuerteventura (Canary Islands).” Photograph by Timo Mosler, My Shot.
“This squirrel was found in the quiet calm of Fort Canning Hill, which in turn is surrounded by the hustle and bustle of Singapore‘s urban jungle.” Photograph by Theo De Roza, My Shot.
“I took this photo of my little neighbor in Helsinki, Finland.” Photograph by Hakan Deniz, My Shot
“Bonding with the wildlife in Venice California.” Photograph by Jeremie Schatz, My Shot