Chipmunks are amazing animals. Learn about their characteristics, habitat and more with these interesting chipmunk facts for kids.
What is a Chipmunk?
Chipmunks are rodents. Chipmunks are mammals. They are related to the squirrel. There are 24 different species of chipmunks that live across North America. One species of chipmunk, the Siberian Chipmunk lives across Asia and in some parts of Europe. A male chipmunk is called a buck. A female chipmunk is called a doe. Babies are called kits or pups and a group of chipmunks is called a scurry.
What does a Chipmunk Look Like?
Chipmunks are tiny animals, weighing between 1-5 ounces. They can grow to be 4-7 inches long and have a fluffy tail that is 3-5 inches long. Chipmunks are usually a gray-brown color with dark stripes on their backs. Their coloring helps them blend in with nature and works as camouflage against predators. Chipmunks have sharp teeth to help them eat nuts and gnaw at things. They have pouches in their eats that they use to store nuts. They have 4 toes on their two back paws and 5 toes on their two front paws.
What does a Chipmunk Eat?
Chipmunks are omnivores, meaning they eat both plants and meats. Chipmunk’s diet consists of nuts, berries, seeds, grains, small insects, frogs, and bird eggs. They usually find food on the ground but will sometimes climb trees to find trees.
Chipmunks can gather over 100 acorns a day. They use their cheek pouches to bring food to their burrow. Did you know that chipmunk cheek pouches can expand 3 times the size of their heads to store food! They can store up to 8 pounds of food in their burrow.
Chipmunks can be found in many habitats. They live in the forest, desert, mountains, plains, garden, and woodland areas
Eastern Chipmunk are the largest chipmunk species and lives in Eastern parts of the U.S and Canada.
Western Chipmunks live in the Western part of hte U.S and Canada. They are smaller than the Eastern Chipmunk. There are 23 species of Western Chipmunks.
Least Chipmunks are the smallest species of chipmunks and are found in the Western Great Plains of the U.S and in Central and Western Canada.
A Chipmunk’s home is located in an underground burrow. A burrow is a hole or underground tunnel. A chipmunk’s burrow is like a small house with different rooms. They like to keep their burrows very clean, they will keep feces (poop) in an unused tunnel. They also have different areas in the burrow for storing food and sleeping. Chipmunks sometimes decorate their burrows with grasses and sticks.
They hibernate during the winter months, only waking up sometimes to eat. To hibernate means to take a deep sleep. During early Fall, chipmunks will gather acorns to store and eat during hibernation.
Mother chipmunks give birth to 2-6 babies called kits or pups. The babies are born blind and without fur. Young chipmunks stay inside their burrows with their mothers for six weeks. After six weeks they will start exploring nature around them. They will continue to stay with their mothers for two more weeks then they will go off on their own.
Chipmunk Facts for Kids
Chipmunks are excellent tree climbers and good swimmers.
Chipmunks take 75 breathes per minute.
Chipmunks are not social animals and prefer to live alone.
They can communicate with a variety of chirping noises.
Predators include snakes, owls, raccoons, coyotes, weasels, and hawks.