I know that many people have, ah, an intense dislike for squirrels. They empty bird feeders. They get into your attic. They dig up your sunflower seeds. But I love the furry little bastards. We have a charming pair living in our maple tree. I leave two big handfuls of seed at the base of the tree every day. It keeps them away from my bird feeder, and they can stay safely close to the tree while they eat.
The male always comes down the tree first. The female follows him a few minutes later. She doesn’t spend much time on the ground. I’ve gotten attached to them, and I was horrified today when I took the trash bin to the curb and saw a squirrel on its side in the road.
It didn’t have any visible injuries. Its eyes were open. It was a juvenile, not one of ours. I leaned over it and said “oh, poor baby,” and it lifted its head! A car came down the street, I waved to the driver to go around, but she stopped and rolled down her window and asked about the squirrel. It hopped up and ran . . . a little slow for a squirrel, but it ran . . . and disappeared into the yard of the neighbor across the street. The woman in the car and I were both flabbergasted and relieved. I suppose that the squirrel had a close encounter with a car actually doing the speed limit and got stunned. I hope he or she has developed a healthy fear of the road and stays on the other side of the street for the rest of its life.
I have been meaning to post these shots of our squirrels for about a week, so here they are, and squirrels aren’t really so bad, and one little squirrel got very lucky today.