Snow, Spot, and a Narrow Escape - UPDATE January 30, 2021

Chickadee in snowChickadee in snowOn this day of falling snow, I sat at my desk between periods of rest that I still need as I recover. Out the window, birds and red squirrels made their usual visits that usually don’t distract me. Then a mink appeared, which always stirs me to action. I quickly rose to crank open the window and offer bologna, trying to see who it was. It was Spot who we haven’t seen for about a month. I didn’t get a picture for the record, though, because Spot was satisfied with a dead mouse we’d put out. She took it off into the forest in a direction we have not seen Guitar go.

I wondered if Spot dared to visit because the larger Guitar was peacefully ensconced in his or her lair in the roof with a good cache of bologna. The main evidence of Guitar’s presence is a growing pile of scat outside the hole in the roof soffit.

The next distraction was at 7:20 PM when light streaks of incoming flying squirrels appeared against the blackness beyond. Shortly they were on the railing. Then I saw why their main attention is always toward the darkness rather than to sounds and movement of me inside the nearby lighted window. A barred owl silently swooped out of the darkness and nearly caught one. I didn’t see a squirrel for the next 38 minutes, and then only briefly.

The main motion is a half dozen deer eating alfalfa hay in the yard.

Thank you for all you do.
Lynn Rogers, Biologist, Wildlife Research Institute and North American Bear Center