Northern flying squirrel seasonal food habits in the interior conifer forests of Central Idaho, USA
Hayward, Gregory D.
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Microhistological analysis of 200 scats collected from two artificial nest boxes used by northern flying squirrels (Glaucomys sabrinus) in central Idaho show distinct seasonal variation. The flying squirrels consumed hypogeous, mycorrhizal fungi in the summer and arboreal lichens and hypogeous, mycorrhizal fungi in the winter. Dominant summer foods included boletoid genera and Leucogaster, while dominant winter foods include lichens in the genus Bryoria, boletoid genera and the genus Gautieria. Central Idaho conifer forests developed under a continental climate characterized by summer drought and long, snow-covered winter and spring conditions. These climatic and vegetation conditions are considerably different from those found west of the Cascades where most studies of northern flying squirrels have been conducted