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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov. 2, 2001
    Location
    In Jingle Town
    Posts
    35,181

    Default Do chipmunk hibernate?

    I went through a few month now without Big Game Huntress bringing home dinner, now within the last couple of days she brought home two chipmunks again...


    do they hibernate?
    Quote Originally Posted by Bristol Bay View Post
    Try setting your broomstick to fly at a lower altitude.
    GNU Terry Prachett



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb. 6, 2003
    Location
    NorthEast
    Posts
    25,022

    Default

    Chipmunks don't hibernate like bears do. Chipmunks go into a semi-state. They can drop their body temps down to less than half of their normal temps and stay out for a few days. But then they'll raise it back up again to a more normal 90-95 degrees for a day. They'll then eat stored food, poop, pee, check the burrows and go back to sleep and drop their temps back down to close to the burrow temps. Usually around 40-45 degrees. Chips spend winter in the deepest burrows...below the frost line. They'll then plug up all exits except for one to air circulation. Keeps the burrow a tad warmer that way.
    Bears have to winter above the frost line and in an open-entry burrow. Due to the extremely cold temps and inability to store food, they go full out and drop their temp from around 100 down to high 80s. They don't freeze due to stored fat and fur, but they don't wake up every few days. They also can go the entire hibernation without peeing or pooping.
    Odd is that you can wake up a chippy a lot faster than a bear despite the huge differences in body temps.

    In spring you see a lot more chips get caught due to a lot more activity above ground after that long winter underground. It's mating and baby season right now.

    And there's your boring as hell nature info for the day. I'm gonna go clean stalls and drag the driveway.
    You jump in the saddle,
    Hold onto the bridle!
    Jump in the line!
    ...Belefonte


    1 members found this post helpful.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct. 21, 1999
    Location
    Rochester, NY
    Posts
    13,304

    Default

    NOT boring, MistyBlue. I love my chipmunks and did a little hop and skip when I saw one up and about the other day. Just another sign of Spring. While I knew that they did not go into true hibernation, I did not know exactly what their Winter routine was. Now I do.
    Originally Posted by Alagirl
    We just love to shame poor people...when in reality, we are all just peasants.



  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov. 2, 2001
    Location
    In Jingle Town
    Posts
    35,181

    Default

    indeed, not boring at all!

    it had struck me as funny that I had not seen any for the last few month.

    But then again, I am amazed that they have not packed up shop and moved on...the cat is a serial killer!

    and she gets ever so annoyed when I toss her catch out...the ones that still wiggle....she just cannot understand it!
    Quote Originally Posted by Bristol Bay View Post
    Try setting your broomstick to fly at a lower altitude.
    GNU Terry Prachett



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