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Common Mammal Species of Northwestern Ontario

BIRDS

FISHES

REPTILES

INSECTS

   
Tamias minimus
Least Chipmunk

Description

Distinguishing Features - Colouration, three dark brown horizontal stripes with white between, from nose to ears; five brown-edged black stripes along back to base of tail; gray rump and legs; underparts whitish-gray. Tail, buffy-orange; ears, brown. Cheekpouches. The smallest of all chipmunks.

Least Chipmunk Size -
21.3 - 32.5 cm (8.4 - 12.8 in)

Habitat

Widespread throughout Northwestern Ontario in and around clearings of mixedwood forests; prefers open jack pine stands and second growth environments; sometimes near lakeshores and suburban areas.

Diet

Primarily a herbivore, the chipmunk will feed mainly on seeds, berries, nuts and cones of conifers; also insects and other animal matter.

Notes

Like most small rodents, this chipmunk is subjected to heavy predation. In the boreal forest it is hunted by hawks, owls, ermine, mink, marten and fishers. In suburban environments, it often falls prey to cats and dogs. However, its numbers are high. A female will produce a litter of 2 to 7 offspring each year.

Less-common chipmunk of Northwestern Ontario-

Eastern Chipmunk - Tamias striatus

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