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Moisture levels to blame for ‘extra chubby' chipmunks in Jefferson County

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Posted at 9:19 PM, Jul 20, 2017
and last updated 2017-07-20 23:19:09-04

DENVER – It must be a great time to be a chipmunk in Jefferson County now that winter’s gone and summer season is in full swing.

Officials with Jefferson Open Space, which preserves lands, natural and cultural resources in Jefferson County, told its more than 3,000 followers on Twitter Wednesday that their chipmunks “may be extra chubby this year.”

An odd thing to tell the public about, no? Not quite.

As it turns out, JeffCo Open Space wanted to get ahead of the game and tell the public about the increase in chubby chipmunks in case people came asking. 

“Due to moisture levels earlier this year, there was a high production of Douglas-fir seeds along with an increase in insects; both of which area primary food sources for chipmunks,” an official told Denver7. “These are likely contributing to their size and health which could be considered ‘fat’”.

The information came with a reminder, though: While officials say this is the reason why chipmunks appear to be packing a bit more weight this year, they want to remind the public to never feed wildlife as it disrupts their natural behavior.