Monday, September 14, 2009

Ground Squirrels

You are probably wondering why you are looking at a pile of dead wood. Well, this afternoon I walked out to the back pasture ( camera in hand just in case). This pile of wood has been there for almost five years. It all came from some old scrag oak trees that we had removed to put our arena in. Our intention was to burn them during burn season, but when it came time to, we couldn't do it. Not because we didn't have a permit, but because we found out that Quail, Ground Squirrels and birds had moved into it. How we could we burn their home. So, even though looking at a pile of dead wood isn't very pretty, what lives in that pile is beautiful.
This is Oreo goat. She is a Fainting Goat. Look up Fainting Goats on Your Tube and you can watch one faint. It is hilarious. Anyway, Oreo is standing next to a hole made by a Ground Squirrel. Holes, horses and donkeys aren't a good combination. Whenever I see a hole, I cover it up. Yes, those Ground Squirrels make new ones which is why it is a never ending battle.

This is another tree that is occupied by Ground Squirrels. I have named this one, " The Mockers Tree". Why? Simple. Ever since we moved here there is one Ground Squirrel who sits on the so called branch on the right of the tree and whenever he sees a cat or a human too close, he stands straight up, stares and chatters until the 'predator' goes away. And when the 'predator' is far enough away, I swear he makes a mocking sound. Hence, the name " The Mockers Tree".

This is a close up of the oak tree in the back of the property. This entire tree is pretty much hollowed out because of the Ground Squirrels. We decided a long time ago to leave several trees alone and give them to the Ground Squirrels. Our thought is this, let them have several trees of their own, and they will stay away from the rest as well as the barn and the house. Well, it seems to be working. So, if it isn't broke, we aren't going to fix it. I'm sure you are asking yourself why don't we just get rid of the Ground Squirrels. Sure we can do it, or at least try. They are a pesky critter no doubt. I will not put poison out ( no animal should suffer a poisonous death). Shooting them is not an option. Trapping them is not going to do any good. So, instead of fighting with them, we have learned to co-exist with them. Besides, we chose to live rurally, they were here first, and when you choose country life, you also must make the commitment to try to live together with the wildlife.

And speaking of Squirrels, here is our Squirrel taking her afternoon nap. She is beginning to grow like a weed.
Until next time......................

1 comment:

  1. You are so right, they were here first. We used to have so many ground squirrels here too, but this summer they moved on to somewhere else. Don't know why.


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