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The Green Life: Acorn Shortage Leaves Squirrels Hungry

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December 18, 2008

Acorn Shortage Leaves Squirrels Hungry

Hungry squirrel Go easy on the squirrels this winter. Yes, we know they're notoriously pesky creatures who wipe out bird feeders, displace other animals, and destroy gardens, but this year they've got a good reason: Naturalists from the Midwest to the East Coast have reported a curious lack of acorns. It's not that trees produced less this year, "it's a zero year. There's zero production," botanist Rod Simmons told the Washington Post. "I've never seen anything like this before." The potentially long life span of oak trees means that one year without acorns doesn't necessarily spell disaster for the trees. As scientists watch and wait to see if a pattern emerges, the situation remains dire for the squirrels that must look for other food sources to carry them through lean times.

Share your observations: Have you noticed a shortage of hickory nuts or acorns in your region?

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