Wednesday, January 21, 2015

What's Not to Love About Squirrels? Well . . . .

I just learned that today is National Squirrel Appreciation Day.  WHAT?!!  I wonder who came up with that one!  Well, it was the National Wildlife Federation, and you can read what they have to say about it here.

Luckily, I've never suffered the kind of damage squirrels can wreak in an attic, so I'm better able to appreciate squirrels for their entertainment value (when they're not nipping off my Flowering Dogwood buds).  It's hard not to admire their resourcefulness, even if they do manage to hog more than their share of seed from the supposedly squirrel-proof birdfeeder.  And yeah, they are cute and fluffy.

Sometimes they are even brave, like this squirrel challenging a Cooper's Hawk for its Mourning Dove meal.

And they do have that dear appealing way of pleading with us for food, like this poor pitiful rain-soaked mama squirrel begging at our back door.

We have a lot of squirrels around our yard, as well as a family of feral cats, which we feed on our back porch.  Cats and squirrels often interact, sometimes even playfully.  In honor of National Squirrel Appreciation Day, here's a sequence of photos of one of those not-so-playful but nevertheless amusing interactions.

Feral kitten arrives at the feeding station to find squirrel got there first.

Squirrel continues to feed despite baleful stares from kitten.

Whoa!  When kitten tried to approach the bowl, squirrel wheeled around and charged at kitten, driving it away.

But not too far.  A stand-off ensued.

"Nyaa, nyaa, nyaa!  You can't scare me, " squirrel seems to be saying to kitten.  I wonder if squirrel would be so bold toward kitten's mom or dad.

I guess little kitten would not be a willing participant in National Squirrel Appreciation Day.

1 comment:

Wayne said...

And I thought it was just little the birds that were intimidated by squirrels. GREAT shot of the bold bushy-tail being eyed by that Cooper's Hawk. Speaking of birds, those Carolina wrens seem to be crazy about suet cakes blended with mealworms (now that I put the suet feeder where the squirrels can't reach it).