Another term commonly used for Arctic ground squirrels is “Sik Sik”.

Standing Arctic ground squirrel
Arctic ground squirrel near the Atigun River on the North Slope of Alaska. Its bare belly shows that it had surgery recently to have a temperature logger implanted or explanted.

Arctic ground squirrel in burrow
Arctic ground squirrel (Sik-Sik) peeking out of burrow after being released. See his ear tags? We refer to him as blue-yellow. The colored wires are attached to uniquely numbered ear tags for more precise identification.

Their name comes in part from the chattering sounds that they often make. In fact, they are quite vocal and have lots of personality. To get the feel for the Sik-Sik, you really need to hear it, so I made a video of some of the squirrels we caught to help you experience the sound of the Sik-Sik. Enjoy!


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Foggy, rain/snow mix, cloudy
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