The western mountains are also home to the Northern Flying Squirrel, a bit larger than the Southern Flying Squirrel and not found in North Carolina outside the mountains. He also belongs outside.
The flying squirrel does not actually fly. He has skin folds between his front and hind legs that enable him to soar in a parachute-like motion. The squirrel climbs to a high tree and then glides to another tree.
We bring in our birdfeeders at night, but we have seen flying squirrels on occasion very early in the morning when we put them back on the deck. http://ncmountainwoman.blogspot.com/2008/09/one-mystery-solved.html
This summer we have had problems with our standard hummingbird feeders so we have brought them inside as well. Those pesky flying squirrels!
Flying squirrels can enter houses in very tiny areas (as small as 1 inch square!) and once inside they can do massive amounts of damage. While we had no indication they were inside, we hired an exterminator to regularly check our attic spaces. There has been no evidence the squirrels have attempted to come inside.
Very early the other morning, I heard a thump and saw a flying squirrel on the bedroom screen. I stepped out on the deck with the camera to see if I could capture him. Well, I did find him all right. He was hanging half in and half out of a vent under the eaves! He does not belong there.
The little rascal has chewed through the grate and built himself a cozy little nest right there in the vent box. I repeat, he does not belong there. Fortunately, the vent box has a small fan inside and would discourage any animal from moving further than the box itself. (We hope!)