Tuesday, May 18, 2010

"Give It A Whirl, Girl, Be Like the Squirrel"

You may have noticed that I love to post pictures of birds, as well as gardens.

Birds are my little wild pet buddies. I don't mind spending the money on their food, or nectar for the hummingbirds. I don't have pets or kids (and you see both of those on leashes these days), so what else would I spend money on?

I also love squirrels. I could watch them perform their crazy antics all day long. Amuses the hell out of me.

However, I can't stand when the squirrels eat my expensive birdseed. I'm sure I'm not the only person that has this problem. Listen up squirrels! I work my butt off all day at work, and you just sit there all day and look cute. And you expect me to feed you???

I was constantly yelling out the bathroom window like a crazy person everytime I saw one of those little bastards on my bird feeder. And not just ON my birdfeeder, IN my birdfeeder. All you would see was a tail poking out of the lid.

The squirrels were starting to look like Jabba the Hutt.

My husband came up with a great idea. We had seen squirrel baffles for sale, but he made his own.

He decided to wrap flashing around a tall wooden pole. The pole was too tall for them to jump onto the feeders from the ground, and the flashing was put on so that the overlapping ridges were facing downwards. We have no mature trees or fencing in the yard, so they couldn't jump down from anywhere.

The next morning after installation, we went outside. It had rained the night before. Lo and behold, we could tell the squirrels had been foiled!

There were muddy, sliding claw marks coming down from about halfway up the pole. The sight of that was hilarious. We wished we would have seen it happen, and taken pictures.

The squirrels finally gave up. Or so we thought.

On Sunday morning, I noticed a squirrel sitting on the grass, eating seeds that had been dropped. I got my camera ready, and watched from the bathroom window.

He did try to climb up....got a running start!

...and here he is, sliding down the pole....you can almost hear him squeak, 'Damn it!'

I kind of feel bad for the little guy, but my wallet doesn't.

I just noticed that my birdbath is sitting on my firepit in the pics. Chuck has to move things when he mows, and doesn't always put them back. I shouldn't have said anything, and just let you wonder why.

My title comes from the White Stripes song 'Little Acorns.' I'm leaving you with a clip from the documentary, 'It Might Get Loud'. It's about Jack White, Jimmy Page, and Edge...they get together and talk about their influences. If you love music, watch this movie. Cool as hell.


Dirt Digger said...

Jack White and squirrels rule! To bring them together is nirvana. Thank you.

Mr. McGregor's Daughter said...

So there's hope after all. I'd given up trying to feed the birds because the squirrels not only ate the birdseed, they'd pull down & rip apart the feeder.

Kyna said...

DD: Wow, your username is a bra size. And you're welcome. :)

Mr. MacG's D: Never give up on the squirrel-proof bird feeder! Unless you have trees overhanging every inch of your yard. Then I can't help ya :(

pamsenglishgarden said...

Love your husband's inventive solution to the squirrel problem! I'm going to insist MY husband read this post! Cute pics.

The Garden Ms. S said...

We have a squirrel in our yard who stares me down with a maniacal gleam in his eye. I think they are secretly quite crazy ;-)

Floridagirl said...

Oh my, Kyna, I wonder if Dirt Digger will be changing his handle now. I love the critters as well and have been fighting those blasted squirrels for the past dozen years. They are amazing acrobats, gymnasts, contortionists. Squirrel-proof feeders are the best solution in my book. Haven't tried a baffle yet, though. Love the light-saber-dueling squirrels. I've used that photo in a group of inspirational pictures for middle-school creative writing. Boys love it.

AaronVFT said...

So cute!

GardenJoy4Me said...

Kyna girl ! OMG I laughed when I read this .. we must have some brother/sister squirrels here because they share the same name "Bastard Squirrel" !! .. but it isn't the Goldfinche feeder (they can't do anything to them) it is the "DIG holes all around my plants" routine .. I have run into so many peants in the shell I wish they were equipped with homing devices so I could figure out what CONEHEAD is feeding them THAT !
Fun piece girl ;-)

Marguerite said...

Thanks for the laugh Kyna, made my morning! Are those mini beer bottles those squirrels have?!


The Idiot Gardener said...

I was thinking of putting out a bird feeder to attract the squirrels. Then I could catch them and train them to use ropes to climb. That'll put an end to your fancy anti-squirrel devices!

Obviously, when I say train them, I mean eat them, but I didn't want to come across as heartless.

Kyna said...

Pam: Yep, it was really cheap and easy to make :D I was so impressed by it though, when I saw him put it up!
(btw you weren't the only one who seemed to have trouble with posting a comment, I wonder why it was like that? Sorry)

Ms. S: When Chuck came to visit me in Edmonton, he laughed so hard when he saw our little red squirrels. He didn't see how they could possible ever be a problem...
He changed his tune when they tied him down and beat him with a bar of soap in a sock ;)

FG: Haha, from the way he writes his blogs, I'm sure he has enough sense of humour to take the teasing lightly lol. But just in case, I apologize profusely to you, MR. Digger. :)

I didn't think there were squirrelproof feeders. I used to have a cat, and she could get into every garbage can we bought. Even 'pet-proof' ones. Short of buying a padlock, there was nothing we could do. And even then she'd probably grow thumbs and learn to pick the lock.

Aaron: Thanks! :)

Joy: Those Bastard Squirrels must enjoy making us crazy lol. They don't usually hang out in my yard too long, because it's too far from the protection of trees. A hawk would scoop them up in a second O_O LOL@the homing device comment :D

Marguerite: They're little light sabers, the weapons from Star Wars. But I like your idea...my friend Sean loves Star Wars and beer so much, that if you could combine the two into a light-saber emitting beer bottle? He'd just die happy on the spot. :D

IG: Now I'm wondering what you're putting into your wife's homemade meals when you go on business trips O_O

Abraham Lincoln said...

I never saw a squirrel as big around as the Pope.

Rainforest Gardener said...

That is so damn cute! The light sabers got my attention but picturing them sliding down the pole was pretty fun. Lets see, who else slid down poles recently... miley cyrus, miss usa...

Noelle said...

Oh dear....I have never seen such a fat squirrel before in my life ;-) They are so resourceful - cheeky little buggers.

Kyna said...

Abe: LOL!

RG: Hey, I live in a city full of Marines. Pole-slidin' is what keeps our city economy going!

"Strippers, and tattoo shops, and Hooters, Oh my!"

Methinks I've found a future blog post title...

Noelle: Well, I haven't quite seen one that fat either. But I've seen some pretty chunky ones! :)

Britta said...

That fat squirrel is gorgeous! And it would be allowed as political correct (= not too thin) at the fashion shows in Milan - although: wearing a fur might spoil its chances - can declare it as "fully bio" :-)

Tabletop Fountains said...

Hilarious!! That fat squirrel will never be able to cross the road before...splat!

Ellada said...

Love your post and so funny.

Rosie@leavesnbloom said...

We have a great deal of fun too watching the squirrel antics in our garden but I agree they are desperate raiders. I've put up some squirrel proof feeders - not plastic but metal ones as they chew through the plastic.

OK explain what flashing is to a Brit as it has a different meaning here!

Jayne said...

I quickly gave up on bird feeders because the squirrels and raccoons brought them crashing to the ground each night, spilling seed all over the place and costing me a fortune.

Now I just sprinkle the seed directly on the top rail of the fence. I also have a squirrel feeder too. It amuses the hell out of me to see the birds eating the squirrel food and the squirrels eating the bird food. They all seem to get along, so I don't worry about it. And no feeders get broken in this process.