I’ve been watching this nest for some time, pretty sure that it belonged to one of the Eastern gray squirrel families that frequent our yard. It’s carefully positioned in a fork between a stout pine limb and the main trunk and was constructed out of sticks, pine needles, leaves and other natural materials. It is in a perfect place for a nest because of its proximity to a bird feeder and an endless supply of pine cones.
This afternoon, I spied a squirrel exiting the nest. It positioned itself on a forked branch below the nest which afforded it a wide view of our yard. Seeing that the coast was clear, it eased down the side of the tree and over to the feeder for a snack of sunflower seeds before heading to the birdbath for a quick drink.
Shortly after the first squirrel left the tree, a second one also came out of the nest, sitting a while on a nearby branch before heading to the forked overlook for a careful survey of the yard. Feeling safe, it too carefully climbed down the side of the tree and headed to a feeder — ever mindful of the watch dog who faithfully guards the yard.
“But when it comes to living there is no place like home.” ~Henry van Dyke
What a quiet place our yard would be without the activity of the squirrels as they scurry among the pine trees. At this time of the year, they are particularly busy collecting or munching on seeds and nuts.
“People look at me like I’m a little strange, when I go around talking to squirrels and rabbits and stuff. That’s ok. That’s just ok.” ~Bob Ross
At times, the squirrels in our backyard are a flurry of activity as they chase each other around the pine trees and search for seeds under the feeders. At other times, they rest quietly among the branches, attempting to blend into their surroundings and remain concealed.
“The best place to hide is in plain sight.” ~Edgar Allan Poe
Fearlessly, this little fox squirrel came bounding onto the scene as I was looking at ice structures around the lake. Scavenging along the shore, he seemed quite at ease with my presence, and stuck several poses as he causally moved about.
“A great deal of talent is lost to the world for want of a little courage. Every day sends to their graves obscure men whose timidity prevented them from making a first effort.” ~Sydney Smith
I wish I had a dollar for every pecan tree seedling that I have pulled out of the flower pots in my backyard. The squirrels have a habit of bringing pecans from other people’s yards and burying them in the pots on our deck in the fall. Then in the spring, when the squirrels fail to retrieve them, the nuts sprout and grow. Our backyard is too small to support pecan trees, but I’m pretty sure that we would have a whole grove by now if we had planted them all.
“Millions of trees in the world are accidentally planted by squirrels who plant nuts, then forget where they hid them. Do good and forget. It’ll grow some day.” ~Anonymous
We startled this little squirrel as it was searching for food at the base of a tree in a state park. It frantically scampered up the tree trunk and hid on the other side. As we continued walking, I looked back and caught it peeking out to see if the coast was all clear.
“When I die of heart failure the next time you frighten me like that, you can put that on my gravestone — ‘I didn’t mean to startle her.'” ~Patricia Briggs
“Because when you stop and look around, this life is pretty amazing.” ~Dr. Seuss