Wednesday, 26 April 2017


A new red squirrel appeared at the nut feeder in the Firs Chase garden on Saturday 22nd. A closer look suggests this is a youngster with its fresher and cleaner appearance, and a slightly smaller size too. Great news that they've bred somewhere nearby.

It approached the feeder with trepidation, sniffing everything around before settling down to have a prolonged feed. It sniffed each branch it moved along and explored different parts of the tree, trying to pick up smells and signals from previous visits by other red squirrels. It also spent more time around the base of the tree more than the other regular squirrels have done.

This red squirrel will be one of this year's youngsters and has grown up quickly in the recent weeks. It already seemed to know how to reach into the feeder to get the nuts out. This visit lasted almost an hour and half - maybe happy to stay put here and make the most of the plentiful supply of nuts!

It didn't seem to hesitate in having a drink of water from the cup beside the feeder. It was also seen nibbling at the antler a couple of times.

As with the other red squirrels, this one would carry a hazelnut up to the next big limb up to spend a few minutes opening it up to eat.

Early on Tuesday 25th, this other individual appeared at the feeder - looking like another youngster but with a paler end to the snout covering the nose and the mouth area. This must be a sibling of the first one as they seem to be quite similar. They're both very independent already and although there's no idea as to where they were born, it's probably near The Lane as the adults were always heading off in that direction when they finished feeding here.

My wife Nolly saw two red squirrels on the tree on Monday 24th, at least one being one of the youngsters, maybe the other the mother. One was even seen resting on a high limb for a brief snooze!
On Friday 21st the male made one brief early morning visit, then the female visited twice mid morning, followed by a third visit mid afternoon feed lasting 20 minutes. As it left the garden it paid the bird-bath one quick visit.

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