Squirrels: Two Funny Cute and Short True Stories
Story Number One
When my mother was growing up in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, my grandfather used to feed the squirrels on an outside windowsill of their home in the wintertime many years ago.
The City of Milwaukee rests on Lake Michigan banks, one of the Great Lakes, and they would get substantial amounts of snow (called "lake effect") in the wintertime.
Many people would routinely take care of the birds furnishing them with seeds in feeders, hanging suet in the trees, etc., but my grandfather also thought about the cute little squirrels.
My grandfather figured that their stored and buried nuts in the ground would be hard to find under that accumulated snow. Thus he began his habit of feeding them through a cracked open window of the house in the winter, placing the food on the windowsill outside.
A wooden pole extending from a nearby tree to the window created a path, and his regular visitors liked this arrangement. The squirrels utilized this nicely provided route above the snowy ground to come and feast on the banquet supplied by my amused grandfather.
This spectacle provided a source of entertainment for each of the family members inside of the warm and cozy home who also enjoyed watching the squirrels close up antics on the other side of the glass window.
There are few things cuter than watching a squirrel hold a piece of food in their tiny paws and rotate it as they chew. What starts as a square soda cracker as an example soon becomes rounded and finally disappears as the squirrel keeps munching and turning it. Those bright little eyes and swishing tails make for a high action figure, and those alert creatures are swift in their reactions to stimuli of any kind.
My grandfather made it easier than this for the squirrels!
One day while the window was still cracked open, one of the squirrels made his way into the house! Frenetic activity ensued as everyone inside tried to chase the squirrel back outside amidst squeals of laughter and orders continually changing as to how best to accomplish that daunting task. Their dog, Jiggs, was especially interested in the chase! He was a great hunter, and this was right up his alley!
More windows were opened, and fortunately, before anything broke, the surprised and frightened critter joined his counterparts back outside in his natural environment.
A squirrel in the house only happened once, and strict measures ensued so that there was never an encore performance! I heard this story more than once from my mother, and it must have been quite the commotion to have made such a lasting memory. Opening so many windows to offer more escape routes for the squirrel must have let much of that frigid air inside the house. Brrrrr!
"Well, it may be humorous to you, but it’s a very serious matter to the squirrels."— Lisa Kleypas
Story Number Two
Another true story happened to my husband and me not many years ago. Squirrels made their way into our attic, and the first indication we had of it was a noise inside the sheetrock of a bedroom wall. They were building a nest in that spot!
Making a long story short, after cutting two more holes than necessary in the sheetrock to locate the nest and eradicate it, our friendly painter had more of a significant repair than initially planned. We ended up having him paint the entire room after the sheetrock repair.
More insulation had to be reinstalled in the wall as the squirrels had pretty much shredded it and packed it down for their excellent and cozy protected nesting site. We found the nest, but not the squirrels, so we knew that they still had to be in the attic.
Let the Battle Begin!
Naturally, we could have called a pest control company and hired them to do the job. As animal lovers, we called our local Wildlife Rehabilitation Center instead to discover what they would prescribe to help us. Here were their suggestions in no particular order.
Distribute dog or cat feces up in our attic to dissuade the little critters from wanting to make a home there.
We do have some inside cats, but we didn't like having their feces tossed about in the insulation at random. So we compromised! As we cleaned the cat litter, we filled a couple of small paper bags with their feces and tossed them into the corners of the attic where we suspected the squirrels might have entered. We figured we could always more easily retrieve the bags later on after our problem was solved. And hopefully, the smell would make the squirrels think that there were cats up there?
When we moved to our new home, we never remembered the bags filled with "goodies" in the attic until after the fact. I hope the new owner doesn't discover it someday, thinking it is a great treasure. She will be heartily disappointed and probably wonder about our sanity.
Have a strobe light continually operating in the attic. We decided to try this suggestion.
Strobe lights are not that easy to find, by the way! My husband finally located a store that sold strobe lights and purchased one. Most of the store's salespeople were young and tattooed sporting Mohawk haircuts or pink hair and had pins through their lips or earlobes. Suffice it to say my husband did not meet the standard dress or appearance of most of the other people in the store, and the salespeople are probably still poking fun at the old "fuddy-duddy" who purchased the strobe light that day.
Did it work? Perhaps. The problem was the light burned out after about a day and a half of operation. So it was not the greatest of tests.
The electrical cords draped down from the attic and plugged into our guest bathroom to operate the strobe light did not offer the most beautiful of visions. We also got to thinking that since squirrels are rodents similar to mice, but with more fur, we did not want to take the chance of one coming through that cracked stairwell going up into the attic and coming into the house. So we gave up on the strobe light idea.
Play LOUD rock music in the attic. Supposedly squirrels do not like that. Here is where we put our foot down. While it might have driven the squirrels crazy, it would surely have done that to us. At the time, we were season ticket holders to the Houston Symphony. Enough said!
Whatever the combination: cat poop, strobe light, or just increased activity (plus the insecticide I sprayed up there, which was my idea!), we seemed to rid our attic of squirrels. We then had our friendly painter put up some screening where our neighbor told us he had seen squirrels entering and exiting an air vent area. So finally that problem was solved!
Cute as squirrels can be, we would rather keep them outside of our houses and attics. I hope you enjoyed these couple of short and funny and true squirrel stories.
Do you have funny squirrel stories to relate?
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
© 2009 Peggy Woods