Dick MacKenzie - www.dickshideaway.com
We didn’t waste much time boating to camp as soon as the ice left our lake April 27. The weather was beautiful, an early spring treat, with lots of sun and temperatures in the high teens (60s F).
Squirrels had discovered my cache of sunflower seeds during our month-long absence and created a neighborhood soup kitchen right under the dining table window.
During three days I live trapped eight of them and Ubered the little nuisances across the lake to their new homes among the pines and poplars. As we left for home on Monday more were waiting their turns on the deck, so looks like another busy rehoming weekend coming up.
I’ve read quite a bit about relocating squirrels. I wonder if the effort is worth it. Many observations question squirrel survival rates when they are plopped down in new, unknown territory usually already occupied by resident, often dominant, bushy tails.
Today at home, while placing freshly smoked beef jerky in the freezer downstairs, I heard sounds coming from my next room cigar lounge. I tiptoed through the dim shadows and basement clutter and peeked through the doorway.
There, in my small wood stove, was a fluttering and throwing up of wood ashes, along with soft bumps and thumps coming from the fire box.
At first I fantasized that one of my renegade squirrels had liked me enough to follow me home. A closer look, though, showed a Grackle frantically bouncing off the walls trying to find a way out. I imagine he must have gotten into the chimney on the roof and fallen to the bottom in the basement.
I was able to help him fly to freedom soon after and will spend a long summer listening to his shrill cackles joining his noisy friends outside the bedroom window early every morning.