Antelope squirrels or antelope ground squirrels of the genus Ammospermophilus are sciurids found in the desert and dry scrub areas of the southwestern United States and northern Mexico. They are a type of ground squirrel and are able to resist hyperthermia and can survive body temperatures over 104 °F.
There are currently four recognised species in the world, with one subspecies:
- Harris’s antelope squirrel, A. harrisii, found in Arizona, New Mexico, and Sonora in Mexico.
- The San Joaquin antelope squirrel or Nelson’s antelope squirrel, A. nelsoni, found in the San Joaquin Valley, California.
- Texas antelope squirrel, A. interpres, found in Texas, New Mexico, and Mexico.
- The white-tailed antelope squirrel, A. leucurus, found in the southwestern United States and the Baja California Peninsula.
All are somewhat similar in appearance and behavior. They are around 5.5″ – 6.7″ long with a 2.4″ – 3.9″ tail, and weigh 3.9–5.3 oz. The tail is somewhat flattened. They have a single white stripe on both flanks and none on the face. They live in burrows, which they dig for themselves. They are diurnal, and do not hibernate (though they become less active during the winter), so they are fairly easily seen.