We have seen anything up to six squirrels in our garden at one time so there is no shortage of squirrel pics in the photo files. So far, the squirrel baffle on the bird feeders is working well, but I don’t like to discourage them altogether as they are such fun to watch. They definitely don’t like sharing and they expend so much energy chasing each other around the garden, it’s no wonder they have to keep eating, just to keep up their energy.
They’ll just about tolerate sparrows sharing the midday meal, but anything larger quickly gets sent on its way. It’s only rarely that they get close enough to swap squirrel jokes over the hors d’oeuvres.
With not much else happening in the garden at the moment, it’s quite entertaining to sit and watch ‘Squirrel Wars’ now showing outside a window near me.
…….But not for long. As soon as I put out two new bird feeders the other day, my archnemesis, the squirrel, was all over them. Being the thrifty soul that I am, I thought I could devise some kind of baffle to stop him from rocketing up the pole every few minutes and scarfing down all the seed. I added a couple of plastic plant pots which gave the little critter pause for thought. You could almost see the wheels in his tiny brain turning has he looked at the problem from every conceivable angle.
First of all he tried leaping over them, but for every modification that I made, he pushed himself to jump that much higher. Their jumping capabilities are absolutely incredible and if there was ever a Squirrel Olympics, this one would have won a gold medal hands down.
But eventually he reached his limit and he went away to rethink the whole thing. He returned next day with a cunning plan. After making sure the coast was clear he proceeded to climb up inside the pot and push it upwards with his head. It took him a few attempts in this fashion until he finally pushed it all the way to the top with the following results.
Needless to say, I ended up having to go out to the store to purchase a squirrel baffle, paying as much for it as I would spend on two dinners for us, just so the birds can enjoy their meals in peace. The squirrel hasn’t given up however, and I wouldn’t put it past him to figure out a way to get up there. Never underestimate the resourcefulness of a squirrel.
You don’t have to tell me twice to stay inside and keep warm, especially when the mercury is struggling to reach 10F. On the rare occasions when I’ve ventured outside to shovel snow, I’ve taken one or two pictures but for the most part, I prefer to observe things through the window.
We’ve been safely tucked up inside the house these past few days; too cold to go outside for more than just a few minutes. We’re such softies! It makes you wonder how some of these little creatures survive in the teeth of this polar vortex. It’s supposed to warm up a bit, soon, but for now, I’ll get my view of nature from the window.
After the pumpkins had served their purpose on the front doorstep for Halloween, they were moved to the back garden where they took on the appearance of frosted donuts after a light dusting of snow. Then the squirrels moved in. It’s good to recycle!
The squirrels in Texas are very bold, let me tell you! I didn’t need a long lens for this shot, in fact I was half-inclined to take a step back, as this feisty little critter gave every indication that he was about to run straight up my leg!
Because it was Columbus Day, school was out and the weather was gorgeous, Spring Valley Nature Center was packed! The new recreation area was full of super-excited children, happy to have at least one more opportunity to play outside in shorts and sandals. I was pleased to see, too, that parents were encouraging their families to not only enjoy the slides and climbing frames but to go exploring the rest of the nature center. Great for them but not so good for someone who is hoping to do some wildlife photography. Screaming youngsters and timid woodland creatures unfortunately don’t make for a good mix. However, I had all day and waited patiently for the rare quiet moments when I was able to get a few shots.
…..but not for long. I’ve given up trying to keep the squirrels off the bird food. It’s certainly not worth going to any great expense to install fancy baffles and what-have-you. It doesn’t take these mangy little marauders more than a few minutes to figure any of that stuff out. So I just improvise. So long as it stalls them long enough for me to bash on the window and yell at them, that’s good enough. And really, to be quite honest, I rather enjoy watching their antics.
Today is the first day of Jennifer Nichole Wells’ Halloween Challenge which runs through the entire month of October. Jennifer has picked a Pumpkin for the first challenge and so, apparently, did this squirrel who made himself at home in the remains of one of our Halloween pumpkins last year. For more on Jennifer’s Halloween Challenge go to https://jennifernicholewells.com/2016/09/26/jnws-halloween-challenge-2/