Squirrels and Bird Feeders

DSC_2146I have a crossteed bird feeder outside of my window that I built a couple of years ago for the many birds that visit and give me untold hours of pleasure just watching them. Among the many visitors are grey squirrels whose antics amuse me even more than the birds.

When the feeders are full, then it is easy pickings for everyone but when the feeders get low, especially the ones closest to the pole in the middle, then the squirrel has to resort to all forms of gymnastics in order to get anything out of the feeders. I am pretty sure it is the same squirrel all of the time as he/she tends to chase off any others that approach although I suppose they could be taking it in turns.

This particular fellow is very industrious and enterprising in his quest for mainly sunflower seeds. I have sat here and watched him figure out how to get the lids off some of the feeders so that he can then stick his head down inside the cylindrical shaped ones. He gets his head in, loads up with sunflower seeds and then pulls himself out to sit on one of the cross tees to eat his loot and then does it all over again. I am waiting for him to let loose with his back legs as they are all that it holding him up in his precarious position. If it happens, then I will have to save him/her as I can’t see it getting out by itself.

It’s hard to get mad at this little guy. I know that some people think of squirrels as a pest and shoot them or drive them off. The only time I get a little teed off is when they are destructive to the feeders, chewing them up and damaging them in their attempts to get at the food. When that happens, I mumble a few bad words under my breath and either repair the damaged feeder or go out and buy a new one.

Currently, I guess because there is so much other food available to the birds, I am not getting too may avian visitors of the smaller variety. I still get Ringneck Doves in abundance along with Cardinals, Blue Jays and even a couple of different woodpeckers, Downy, Golden Fronted and Red Bellied. The last one, incidentally is very noisy. That’s not to say that the smaller birds are not visiting, they are but not in the same numbers as through  the winter. Incidentally, I have bird feeders all over my yard and it usually takes more than a 100 pounds of feed every two weeks to keep them full.

But the squirrel is always there…

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