Tag Archives: Plantain Squirrels

The squirrel and the jackfruit

The Plaintain Squirrel is the most common squirrel species in Singapore. They are found in many parks, gardens, mangrove and forested area. In other words, a very versatile species. It is also unfortunately considered a pest by fruit farmers as they have a liking for fruits. Thankfully for them, Singapore does not have many fruit farms (no, there are no orchard in Orchard Road), so they are not hunted down.

Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserve is one of those ulu (far flung and isolated) areas that I like to frequent, as there is a wide variety of animals and birds that calls it home. It is mainly a mangrove area (hence the Wetland designation). In the past, it housed a series of prawn ponds and fish farms, but now it has been redeveloped into a park with ready made trails for those seeking a dose of nature.

I was covering one of the trails, which overlook Johor Bahru city, Malaysia from across the Johor Straits. In fact, I can probably see the hospital where I was born in from there. Which reminds me, I need to take a picture of it the next time I am there!

Anyway, back to the story. Along this trail there are a few jackfruit trees. I have seen the plantain squirrels guard the unripe fruits before. But on this trip, I was luckier.

Plantain Squirrel & Jackfruit

Plantain Squirrel & Jackfruit

Plantain Squirrel & Jackfruit

Plantain Squirrel & Jackfruit

What is interesting is the way the squirrel uses its hands. Looks very similar to that of humans, although I cannot be certain whether they actually do have opposable thumbs or not. Not that it matters, as the squirrel clearly had no trouble eating almost half the fruit anyway!