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Maryland Squirrel Pulled From Endangered List

November 20th, 2015 by WCBC Radio

While some squirrel species can be found hiding in neighborhood bushes or rummaging through city trash cans, the Delmarva Peninsula fox squirrel largely stays in rural, woodland habitats. Deforestation and hunting throughout the first half of the 20th century, however, pushed the squirrel toward extinction and helped land it on the federal endangered species list. On Monday—more than 40 years after the squirrel’s addition—the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service will remove it from that list.

The delisting comes at a time when the species, which is twice as large as the common gray squirrel, has a population size and range greatly above its historic lows. In 1967, the squirrel’s range had been narrowed 90 percent, from the whole of the Delmarva Peninsula to four counties in Maryland. Research from the Wildlife Service estimates there are now 17,000 to 20,000 squirrels across 10 counties and 135,000 acres of forest in Delaware, Maryland and Virginia.

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