Raspberries are in the rose family, Rosaceae, the genus Rubus and with six species in Arizona. Five are native species and one introduced. Rubus idaeus spp. strigosus or red raspberry is native. Yay!
The fruit is small, but pretty darn good. I know that I don’t have the patience to fill a pail of them, but they are great to browse on while poking around in a high coniferous forest. If we hadn’t been browsing, we may not have seen the Chiricahua fox squirrel who was having a snack as well.
The Chiricahua fox squirrel is Sciurus nayaritensis ssp. chiricahuae. Another common name is Nayarit squirrel and its northern most range is in the Chiricahua Mountains of southeastern Arizona. Hey, it is the only tree squirrel in the Chiricahuas! How cool is that? Oh, and please, not to be confused in any way with the rock squirrel (Spermophilus variegatus) that’s also found in the mountains or at your place eating your garden and burrowing under the house.
The photos are mine. The fox squirrel photo was taken a few years ago in a woodland above Portal, AZ. It’s on an oak trunk with a juniper trunk behind it. What a beautiful squirrel! The raspberry photos were taken on the day described in this episode. Yum!