Notes from Windward: #63

Flying Squirrels

More fun with varmits

Terry writes:

     Last year's rains produced a lot of grass and acorns, and as is nature's way, that produced a great many mice and squirrels this year. The cats and our mouse traps help keep the mouse population in check. We use live traps to snare the squirrels who were brave enough to go after our foodstuffs, and caught several, but there's always more of them lurking in the woods waiting for a chance to score.

     Squirrels are especially fond of the grain shed and, a number of times, a little grey devil has been spotted scampering away through a hole in the floor when I open up the shed to get grain for the sheep. In an attempt to stop, or at least slow down, this pilferage I covered the holes in the floor with various things, but they seem quite clever at finding any little opening to take advantage of.

     One day, four of our lambs were out grazing as I went to the shed to get their evening grain ration. When they saw me approach the shed, they knew that grazing time was over and dessert was coming. They consider the grain to be the most important part of their meal so they came over to supervise me to make sure it was done right, i.e. quickly and plentifully.

     I opened the door and went into the shed. The lambs crowded around the entrance and stood there with their heads through the door licking their lips. As I scooped out their barley, I heard scampering sounds.

     Apparently, a squirrel had entered the shed through a crack in the door. It scampered back and forth across the back of the shed several times looking for an escape hole. They were all blocked. I thought I had it trapped. But, finally, in an act of desperation, it ran from the back of the shed to the front, took a flying leap, scampered across the backs of the lambs and took off running for the treeline.

     I don't know who was more suprised - me or the lambs - but surely Bullwinkle would have been very proud.

Notes From Windward - Index - Vol. 63