I have a love-hate relationship with the squirrels in my yard. They are fun to watch, so adorable and most of the time they make me smile.
In fact, the squirrel crop this year seems to include the most polite I’ve had in many years. They spend their time under the bird feeders, cleaning up the spilled seed and playing in the nearby trees.
In the past, though, I’ve had some rogue squirrels, which seemed to take pleasure in destroying my bird feeders, chasing the birds off and even infiltrating the garage. I purchased several “squirrel-proof” bird feeders to keep them at bay, but none really worked.
Last winter, we had two red-tailed hawks take up residence in our neighborhood, and it didn’t take long for the squirrels to disappear. I retired the chewed-up feeders and bought a few new ones, which have now lasted a record 1 1/2 years. While I don’t really like to imagine what happened to the previous squirrel residents, I’m glad that those that returned seem to appreciate the bounty they receive.
When I restocked the bird seed yesterday for the impending snow storm, I added a bag of peanuts to the mix…I do appreciate a good squirrel.
Fortunately, we have good squirrel neighbors. One year, we had to put on a “collar” to keep them climbing up to the feeder and keeping the feeder far enough from the tree to where they can make a jump. The real test was last summer, when I planted corn in the as part of the front yard landscape. Surprisingly, the squirrels didn’t bother the corn at all. But, we also have a trio of Cooper’s Hawks patrolling our skies, and likely hunting as well.
What cheeky little chappies…