Bangs's Mountain Squirrel
(Syntheosciurus brochus) is a species of tree squirrel
that only lives in Costa
Rica and Panama.
can be found in mountain rain forests at an altitude between 1900
and 2600 meters, and lives mainly in the tree tops, but sometimes
on the forest floor as well. One of its habitats is at the summit of the
Volcano in Costa Rica, in a Clusia
forest that is almost unaccessible for humans.
The squirrel's head and body measure 15 centimeters, with a 13 cm
tail. It has an olive brown back and an orange-red belly. Because
of the shape of its skull and teeth, the species has been separated
from the genus of typical tree squirrels, Sciurus
, into its own (monotypical) genus
Until the 1980s, only four animals of this species were known.
Since then, the species has been studied more in depth, especially
by the zoologists Wells and Giacalone. It has been discovered that
these mountain squirrels are sociable creatures. A couple of
squirrels live in a tree nest together with their young at a height
of 6 to 12 meters. Mountain squirrels have also been known to steal
footwear, hiding in trees or undergrowth until an unsuspecting
hiker takes off their shoes or boots before going to sleep.
- Ronald M. Nowak: Walker's Mammals of the World. Johns
Hopkins University Press, 1999 ISBN 0-8018-5789-9
- Robert K. Enders: Observations on Syntheosciurus: taxonomy
and behavior. Journal of Mammology 1980, Bd. 61, S.
- J. Giacalone, N.M. Wells, G. Willis: Observations on
Syntheosciurus brochus (Sciuridae) in Volcán Poás National
Park. Journal of Mammology 1987, Bd. 68, S. 145-147