What a week at the Mueller Sanctuary!
For starts, some of you might remember a nutty blog I did back in February about a Squirrel that seems to have taken some lessons from Pierre. Well he made a grand appearance again this week. I'm quite sure I've seen him in between February and this week but he'd not been this, um, social.
Monday and Tuesday of this week he was like this. The last couple days, just acting like the rest of them out there. Funny thing he is. I tell people that we don't pick them, they pick us. A short video of him here.
One photo I managed to capture of him that I really like is this...
I recently came across some words that I thought would fit perfectly with the shot. Words I and so many others I know agree upon.
So while 98% enjoy this moment, there are the haters as usual. The joys of social media give people much to see and much to comment on. "Vermin" is what they called him, a Squirrel we named "Hoover". Nasty smelly creatures full of mites. I asked why are they nasty? "Because they chew everything, they shit on everything, etc" Well they do live outdoors, the world is their toilet, I bet their home isn't full of excrement. Have you ever smelled one? How do you know they smell so bad? "Because they don't shower".
Okay, so this was getting ridiculous pretty fast. I knew it would be from the get go. I turned this whole thing around on the individual, going from a Squirrel in my hand to a nasty smelly thing he was holding... his phone. I pointed it out to him. He said "what do you mean?" Without getting into too much of the dirty details I made mention of the toy he holds so many hours a day, and bet he held it while sitting on the toilet doing #2. Day after day. Somewhere, somehow, I am sure his hands switch and his wiping hand met the phone on more than one occasion. Knowing his fingers ran through his dirty butt crack and then met his phone was gross. Damn, his phone was nastier and smellier than Hoover! He held it to his face daily. He probably had fecal matter on his cheek as we spoke. Of course this is much more effective in the moment, using some "gutter talk" and not my polite reiteration on my blog. One thing about me, I can be pretty gross, sometimes for fun, other times just to shut someone up and even have them walk away.
End result result, no comparison in his mind and I was f**ked. This was in no way a mean moment, just a difference of opinions between a couple guys. The jokes died off quick about me having Squirrel germs and him having a poo phone. It was time to leave the sandbox and get back to being mature adults.
It always stuns me how against wildlife some people really are.
Next up for the vermin is our Virginia Opossum.
I've been seeing this "guy" many nights lately. I've shared bits on him recently, and how I eat an apple every night on my way home from work, and I throw the core out back. Some nights I do set it in a spot where I can watch for a while and see who comes for it. It's always a treat for me to see the Opossum as much as it is a treat for the Opossum to find the core. A short video of him here when he found the core about a week ago. Another grainy, even shorter video of him, washing down near the shed.
He hides under the back deck to eat the core, or sometimes takes it to this half log I dragged home years ago.
I don't bug him every time I see him or try to take his photo. Just once in a while I like to get something to share, and try to promote the good these animals can do around our neighbourhoods. They are very misunderstood creatures. So many people don't know what they are. They fear them because of their appearance. Long rat like tail. "Ewwwwwwwww! Gross!" Razor like teeth. "OMG! It's going to bite me. It probably has rabies!"
Thankfully there are so many who are PRO-POSSUM and help spread the word on the benefit to having them running around after dark.
People see my Possum pics and they want to talk. Some of it is positive and some of it not so much. The negative rants have reduced quite a bit the last year or so. Hopefully I've changed some opinions on these animals.
A number of Raccoon sightings, one or two every night, running about, looking for food, playing in the baths. I don't need to go on about these guys as I did a blog about a daytime sighting one not too long ago and touched upon these things. As long as they don't get up on our roof, all is good. They are fun to watch. Some tolerate my presence out back and give me a show, others not so much. I don't take it personally when they scurry away.
I change the bath and basin every night now. They are quite grateful of this.
My nightly appearances don't bother all of them. I tread lightly and go about my business. This one watches with curiosity especially when I top up a bird feeder.
Works for me!
As some can figure... it is my goal to help others understand, appreciate and respect the wild world around us.
What's your take on these visitors?