I was thinking to do a review on a rodent or lagomorph. But then, I decided to review the eastern grey squirrel (Sciurus carolinensis Gmelin, 1788) by Safari LTD, which was released for their North American Wildlife line in 2006. The figure was marketed simply as ‘squirrel’ but was clearly intended to represent this species.
The eastern grey squirrel is native to the eastern half of the United States and adjacent Canada. It has been introduced to Europe, Australia, and South Africa where it has become a pest. It was eventually eliminated in Australia, but is still a pest in Europe.
The paint is simple, matte gray with a whiter underside. It would be a little more realistic if it had some red worked into the gray. The eyes are realistic but the ears and nose are painted pink, like rodent and rabbit figures often are. Still, overall it is a very nice representation.
The figure also come with an acorn (seed of an oak tree) in its mouth, as if gathering nuts to prepare for the winter ahead. Some collectors do not like figures with objects/food in their mouths, but I think it gives the figure a certain charm.
This figure makes a nice collectible or a children’s toy. Surprisingly, unlike its Eurasian red cousin, figures of this species are rare. The only other representative I can track down is a very red-colored figure by K&M International. So if you are a collector of species, this might be one for you!