AUSTIN (KXAN) — If you’ve recently seen squirrels laying belly down, with arms and legs splayed to the side, you’re not alone. It’s a seasonal squirrel position called ‘splooting’ that helps the critters cool off on a scorching day.
One Austin family spotted a squirrel that took it to the next level — laying out over an HVAC unit. It forced the squirrel’s tail directly up in the air, which they caught on camera.
Though the small mammals might look like they’re in stealth mode, it turns out they’re just trying to cool off.
“They are basically getting as much of their body on a cooler surface. If it’s cooler than the air outside, they’re going to put their body on it and it’s going to cool their temperature,” Jill Calcote, of Moonshine Wildlife Rehabilitation in Cedar Park, told KXAN around this time last year when viewers were noticing similar language.
For more details on how you can help ‘splooting’ squirrels, check out KXAN’s story from last year.