Tuesday, November 8, 2016

Baby Squirrels

This morning, after racing through the girls pasture and flinging their manure into the cart - or over the fence - I made a quick stop in my garden, before changing for work.  Last weekend, I planted a new perrenial garden bed and I wanted to check on how the plants were doing.

Brett dug the holes for me.  Cody dug a few too.

Then I cruised by the large raised planter that I filled with flowers last month.  Squirrels promptly ate all the pansy flowers, then the pansy plants, and then started in on my snapdragons.  Even the artichoke plant wasn't safe.  I covered the planter with wire mesh and managed to protect the remaining survivors -- but the plants were getting smashed by the wire so I took it off last week.

The plants were still there, as well as a couple holes where the squirrels had buried chicken scratch that they steal from the neighboring chicken run.  As I stood there, I heard squeaking -- squeaking like an animal was stuck.  The sound came from the hen house.  It sounded like a bird but it was coming from the ground.

I looked closer, and there was definitely something wedged between the hen house baseboard and the side of the shed.  My first thought was "frog" -- the little guys are everywhere this time of year; climbing the garage door (and dropping at my feet) and hiding in water buckets.  But no, this was not a frog -- and then it squeaked again.  I leaned closer, putting my eye close to the gap, and realized it had fur... and little squirrel ears ... and there were more squirming bodies inside, below the crevice, in a nest dug out under the hen house.

If you zoom in on the last picture, you can kind of see the one that was squeaking.  Hopefully, his mama will pull him back down into the nest.

I don't like ground squirrels; they eat my orchard fruit, my pansies and my tomatoes.  They also dig burrows in the pastures which is a danger to the horses.  We worry about the horses breaking a leg if they step in a hole while playing.  I had a watering can, full of water, in my hand when I found the  baby squirrels and I briefly considered drowning the babies (see how much I hate squirrels?).  But then I realized that I couldn't kill a baby animal, even a squirrel.  So I took pictures instead.

5 comments:

  1. I couldn't have killed them either!

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  2. They can be real pests. I wouldn't have killed him either.

    A short story about one baby squirrel: last week one got in the house, we have no idea where he came in, maybe the firepace? Just don't know. Anyway, he ran around the rooms for a while, not the least bit scared of us. We held open the door and he almost left but thought it would be more fun to take a ride on my huge antique spinning wheel. Well he ran from rung to rung and hot it spinning very fast (like a hamster wheel) then he grabbed on and rode the rim until he wound up upside down and fell off. Then he ran behind the copper firewood bucket. My husband went to get a blanket to throw over him and put him outside. Unfortunately, he must have done something to his head when he fell because he died but it was something to watch while it lasted. I guess they have soft heads and he couldn't take the bang to it.

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    1. That is the best squirrel story I have ever heard!

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  3. An American in TokyoNovember 9, 2016 at 4:08 PM

    I wouldn't have been able to drown them either, but I feel bad that they are causing you all sorts of trouble!

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  4. I'm sorry that the squirrels inflict so much damage and are such pests, but a compassionate heart is always a good thing. :)

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Thanks so much for commenting! I love the conversation.