Plantain Squirrel eats Aristolochia acuminata fruit

posted in: Fauna, Plants | 4

One morning in early December 2014, I was attracted to the loud cries of a pair of Plantain Squirrels, also known as Common Red-bellied Squirrel (Callosciurus notatus singapurensis). The squirrels were in different trees about 10 metres or more from each other. Whether they were mating or territorial cries, I do not know. But the cries went on for quite a few minutes.

One of the squirrels was at the top of my Noni tree (Morinda citrifolia). Initially I thought it was eating the fruit. However, after examining the photographic images, I realised that it was in fact eating the fruits of the creeper Indian Birthwort or Dutchman’s Pipe (Aristolochia acuminata) (top).

This creeper is the food plant of the Common Birdwing (Troides helena cerberus)
caterpillars.

YC Wee
Singapore
January 2015

4 Responses

  1. After this can you check around your place for any dead squirrels having eaten the seed pods of the plant ….

    • No dead squirrel ever seen in my garden. Dead rats yes, even dead mynas, but no dead squirrels. I believe animals do not go for poisonous fruits, maybe fruit poisoned by people… But I stand corrected.

  2. […] was no other Plantain Squirrels nearby as in an earlier encounter where there was a response LINK. There is another earlier post where it was harassing a python using an almost similar call LINK. […]

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