Sleeping Through the Winter: Nine Hibernating Animals

 Eastern Chipmunk

Chipmunks in parks and forests. 12 inches long, 2.3-5.3 ounces. These winter hibernators don't sleep for four months. After eating, urinating, and defecating, they hibernate.


North American groundhogs are known for tunnelling. Their burrows have chambers and exits. Oct-March is hibernation season. Temperatures plummet below 68 ℉.


Hedgehogs are 7.8 to 9.8 inches long and spiky. In November-April, they hibernate. Multiple 41-degree days cause their hibernation. These creatures need as least 1.3 pounds of fat to withstand hibernation.

Striped Skunk

The black body of the Striped skunk is broken up by two white stripes. Instead of going into a deep sleep during the winter, these creatures torpor. Skunks' metabolic rate and body temperature drop during hibernation.


American bumblebees die in winter. Queen bumblebees hibernate. Queen bees awaken in spring and lay worker, new queen, and male bee eggs. Queens, worker bees, and male bees die as winter approaches.


While some snails die after laying eggs in autumn, the Roman snail hibernates. These snails may seal their shells to protect themselves from winter frosts. They build a hole to burrow underground from October to April.


American bullfrogs live in the east, south, and west. They hibernate underwater in cold climates. They need oxygen-rich water to survive the winter and rest on the mud or half buried. Some hibernate slowly.

 Box Turtles

During brumation, cold-blooded animals sleep and don't eat or drink. Mid-September through mid-November is box turtle hibernation. These animals hibernate inside their shells and don't need a location.

Prairie Dogs

These mammals hibernate underground from November to March. Depends on elevation. Males emerge before females. 14 to 17-inch Prairie Dogs are gregarious.

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