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#1
09-19-2019, 10:00 PM
 Guest Join Date: Dec 2017 Posts: 32

## Could a small rodent (mouse, chipmunk) be killed by an apple falling from a tree?

Don't need answer fast. But how strong are the skulls of small rodents?
#2
09-20-2019, 05:47 AM
 Guest Join Date: Feb 2007 Location: Challenger Deep Posts: 12,305
Not sure about the skull, but ISTM that an apple falling from substantial height could cause massive blunt trauma if it landed on the body of a small rodent.
#3
09-20-2019, 08:48 AM
 Guest Join Date: Jun 2008 Posts: 1,221
On the other hand, as a rule, apples don't fall on hard, unyielding surfaces. This has a big impact (heh) on the impact. It is hard to kill even bugs using much larger and heavier objects than apples, if the bug is on grass, under an apple tree.
#4
09-20-2019, 10:14 AM
 Charter Member Join Date: Dec 2002 Location: Very east of Foggybog, WI Posts: 5,464
You don't need to squash the rodent nor even fracture its skull. It think that a falling apple might be enough to break a neck if it hit just right.
#5
09-20-2019, 10:40 AM
 Member Join Date: Dec 1999 Location: La Rive Ouest Posts: 10,371
Just to have some numbers to work with:

Body weight of adult gray squirrel: about 1 to 1.5 lbs (~450-680 g).
Weight of medium red delicious apple: about 1/3 lb (~150 g)

Here's an Everlast 60 lb heavy bag used for boxing workouts and such. Note that this item is considerably lighter than the bags high-level boxers and MMA fighters would use (100-150 lb).

The last mathematical item is the height of the drop -- that 1/3 lb apple is coming down on that 1.25 lb squirrel from ... 8-10 feet? Don't think I've ever been up close to an apple tree. So anyway, is that comparable to dropping a 60-lb heavy bag onto a 180-lb person from how high? Is the height meant to scale up linearly with the weight to draw a comparison? Not sure.

In any case, it's clear that the apple has to hit a squirrel just so to kill it. Random apples falling onto randomly-places squirrels will suffer a lot of glancing blows and near misses -- and yes, likely a handful of deaths. Seems that many more squirrels will survive than get snuffed, though.
#6
09-20-2019, 11:16 AM
 Guest Join Date: Jan 2004 Location: Regina, SK, Canada Posts: 2,000
Trying to make it look like an accident?
#7
09-20-2019, 11:18 AM
 Member Join Date: Nov 2004 Location: North of 8 Mile Posts: 4,186
My aunt killed her chihuahua by tossing a small a bone onto it's temple. so I think it's at all far fetched to imagine an apple killing a mouse.
#8
09-20-2019, 12:03 PM
 Member Join Date: Aug 2017 Location: So.Ark ? Posts: 18,004
I saw a squirrel fall off a powerline right onto a concrete sidewalk. I thought for sure he was dead. I went and tapped it with my toe and to my amazement he jumped up and ran off to the trees. I kept watching for him after that, thinking I'd see a limping squirrel.
They are tough little creatures.

Last edited by Beckdawrek; 09-20-2019 at 12:04 PM.
#9
09-20-2019, 02:06 PM
 Voodoo Adult (Slight Return) Charter Member Join Date: Jul 2000 Location: Charlotte, NC, USA Posts: 26,585
Quote:
 Originally Posted by 74westy Trying to make it look like an accident?
Planning the worst game of Clue ever.
#10
09-21-2019, 10:02 AM
 Guest Join Date: Mar 2011 Location: West shore Lake Michigan Posts: 2,370
It would have to be a "not long for this world anyway" rodent as birds of prey feast on such non-observant creatures. Falling apples equate to death from above, let's scurry away scenarios.
__________________
This place is beginning to feel like a tin foil hat convention.
#11
09-21-2019, 12:17 PM
 Member Join Date: Aug 2017 Location: So.Ark ? Posts: 18,004
I walked out the door yesterday and an acorn hit me on the head. If I didn't see the acorn drop to the ground I would've swore it was a large rock. It hit hard. Surprisingly hard.
#12
09-21-2019, 12:25 PM
 Guest Join Date: Dec 2008 Posts: 1,884
Quote:
 Originally Posted by Si Amigo My aunt killed her chihuahua by tossing a small a bone onto it's temple. so I think it's at all far fetched to imagine an apple killing a mouse.
#13
09-21-2019, 12:48 PM
 Guest Join Date: Aug 2001 Location: on your last raw nerve Posts: 22,454
Quote:
 Originally Posted by Beckdawrek I walked out the door yesterday...

Last edited by Gatopescado; 09-21-2019 at 12:51 PM. Reason: And did you arrive?
#14
09-21-2019, 01:09 PM
 Member Join Date: Aug 2017 Location: So.Ark ? Posts: 18,004
I came and I went.
#15
09-21-2019, 02:04 PM
 Member Join Date: Feb 2001 Location: Not the PNW :-( Posts: 20,329
Quote:
 Originally Posted by Beckdawrek I walked out the door yesterday and an acorn hit me on the head. If I didn't see the acorn drop to the ground I would've swore it was a large rock. It hit hard. Surprisingly hard.
We have a couple oaks overhanding our house. The sound of acorns hitting our roof in the fall is amazing. (And it seems that every other year is a big year for them.) Sometimes one will hit a sky light and makes me worry that one will crack someday.

This is with the jillion evil squirrels running around grabbing acorns directly off the tree. If that didn't happen the sound would be like a battle for weeks on end.
#16
09-21-2019, 02:44 PM
 Guest Join Date: Jan 2014 Location: Washington, DC area Posts: 1,789
It didn't seem to bother our dog much when a squirrel dropped an acorn on her head.
#17
09-21-2019, 05:16 PM
 Guest Join Date: Apr 2014 Location: Los Angeles Posts: 865
I've had a squirrel try to drop a pine cone on me... but it missed. One of those green, unripe, heavy pinecones. Little bastard.
#18
09-21-2019, 06:19 PM
 Charter Member Join Date: Dec 2002 Location: Very east of Foggybog, WI Posts: 5,464
Thanks for the math bordelond, but the OP asked about a small rodent like a mouse of chipmunk. I'd think they'd be much more susceptible to damage than a squirrel.

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