What a rowdy day around the bird feeders.
I’m not sure if my feathered friends are sensing the oncoming bad weather, the remnants of ‘Frankenstorm’, or at least the effects of Hurricane Sandy coming our way, but the birds seem to be stocking up.
Even the squirrels are going a little snakey but they’ve been really rambunctious since the weather started to change.
I keep a bucket of peanuts on the deck so I can refill the feeders for the Blue Jays and Klutz without always making a trip to the garage. Arriving home from work the other day, I found a gathering of tree rats on the deck, one actually sitting inside the bucket, as they helped themselves to a peanut buffet.
I use a plastic bucket to store the nuts and must not have secured the lid tightly before leaving for the day. The carpet on the deck was littered with peanut shells and a good quarter of the bucket had been emptied.
When I left the next day, I made sure to make sure the lid was on tight and even put a rock on top of it for extra security. Despite my attempt at squirrel-proofing, the little rodents actually started to chew the top of the lid to get inside.
I’m not sure if they gave up or I interrupted them but I don’t think they managed to get inside. I now place a board on top and a brick to keep them out, which seems to be doing the trick, at least when it comes to the peanut bucket.
The tree rats have launched a full-on attack on the bird feeders of late. Watching at work or from inside the house, they’re in and out of the platform feeder on a regular basis, as well as scaling the pole feeder in an attempt to crack the two squirrel-proof feeder I have handing from it.
As usual, they’re not successful on those ones – thank you Brome Bird Care – but despite the baffle on top of the peanut feeder I also having hanging there, they manage to get on that one.
I laughed watching one the other day as it descended on top of the baffle from the arm above. Given the slippery surface, the squirrel looked it was competing in a log rolling contest. It kept shuffling its paws to gain traction, which caused the baffle to spin around and around.
Finally, the squirrel flew off it, landing on the ground below. It didn’t give up though and returned to master the baffle, gaining a tasty peanut in return for its victory.
There’s a new tree rat in the yard I’ve named Stumpy. And, despite my antagonism towards the squirrels, this one has softened my resolve a bit.
Stumpy is a tiny black squirrel with a severed or malformed tail. I’m not sure if it’s just small or perhaps just a young squirrel.
I’ve seen it take on full-sized and full-tailed squirrels and come out victorious and on other occasions, I’ve seen it harassed and chased away. You can’t help but feel a little sorry for it because of the mangled tail but it seems to do OK and doesn’t appear to be sick or in ill health.
I’ve captured the squirrels in a variety of poses foraging through the yard and while doing so, also got a great shots of a Jay and Klutz on the feeder. Enjoy!
Until later ….