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Tuesday, August 11, 2020

Campus

UH resident continues feeding squirrels throughout campus closure


Resident Sai Harsha Katuri has made it his mission to continue feeding the squirrels as many of his peers have moved off-campus due to the coronavirus outbreak. | Shivani Parmar/The Cougar

The University is not only home to students across the globe, but it is also a habitat to the many squirrels that live across the campus.

Some squirrels have become accustomed to being fed by students and staff who are regularly on-campus. When classes went online for the remainder of the semester as a result of the coronavirus, some of their food supply was cut, creating a need for the squirrels to find a new food source.

“The place where I come from, we don’t have many squirrels,” said Sai Harsha Katuri, an accounting student pursuing his Ph.D. “I mostly started off giving them fries from McDonald’s and then later on realized it is not healthy for them, so I moved on to feeding them almonds, walnuts and peanuts.”

For students who chose not to leave their campus housing, this was an opportunity to take a call to action, which was what Katuri did. 

Katuri is an international student from India living at the University Lofts. He decided to make it his responsibility to continue feeding the campus squirrels.

Every day he packs a container full of nuts to share and makes rounds to all of the squirrel hotspots on-campus. The daily encounters with the squirrels are enjoyable, according to Katuri, and he has begun to differentiate them from one another. He also made a background story about all of them.

After providing for them for some time, he learned that they do not have the best environment to drink from without students present.

“One thing that bothers me is the squirrels don’t have access to drinking water,” he said. “So the only access to water they have is the fountains which are full of chemicals.”

Katuri is a part of the new UH club founded here called, The Squirrel Society, and hopes to make changes to help the animals’ university environment.

For more of The Cougar’s coronavirus coverage, click here.

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