Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Slumlord

Hannibal is a Slumlord. Interesting?!? I don't remember asking for squirrels as tennants. I don't remember getting paid rent. None-the-less, for several years now, a squirrel has had squatters rights to the Screech Owl Box I built a few years ago. She has been a terrible tennant too. She's ripped off the siding, broke the perch off the front entrance, and who knows what terrible things she's done to the inside, but I digress...She won my heart over a few weeks ago, as I saw new life peek out of the hole. A cute little squeak was the first clue, as I scanned the area for the source, and saw the tiny lil head trying to see out. (These photos were taken a week later, and they are MUCH bigger!) Anyway, This is what I saw:



Adorable right?



I knew there was at least 2, maybe three, as the days passed...



Here's a shot with mama, which brings me to the real story:



I walked by my kitchen window on Saturday, looked out to the Owlbox, hoping to see a lil face, and what I saw puzzled me. I saw what looked like a big ball of fur poking out of the hole. Weird! I got the binoculars and saw that is was mom with a baby in her mouth, and she was moving out! I knew right away that she was moving her babies, and watched her as she headed in the direction of her new home. She was moving across the street to a neighbors tree. Hmmm...She must think it no longer safe for her kids, as they are getting more curious with each passing day. I do have a dog, so I think mom is absolutely right in moving her children. Anyway, I grabbed my camera and waited for her to move the second one. This is what I saw:



This lil guy started crawling out of the box as soon as mom left with the first one. When mom came back, she was none-too-happy that the lil one was exposed...



She started scooping it up at a really awkward angle...





These frames only represent a partial segment of her scooping him up, but then this post would be extremely lengthy if I didn't jump a few frames at a time.



She moved them approximately 100 yards at my my best estimate. A really long trip with a load in your mouth with each trip.






She was amazing to watch!



The baby all tucked under was so cute!



She came back 1 more time to get the final baby. She had to be exhausted!



I miss them...I'm hoping she will be back to reclaim her Owlbox as her nest some day. This Slumlord smiles at the thought of it all over again...

14 comments:

joan13950 said...

Thanks for sharing this Peggy. You made me smile, just so precious.

JoanM

Nature ID said...

Wonderful post!

jalynn01 said...

Your mama squirrel reminds me so much of a cat how she carries her babies. How cute was that. I so enjoyed all the pictures and the story line was just great! Thanks Hannibal..

LĂșcia said...

So cool!!! You managed to photograph the squirrel family, the mother carrying the newborns...
This was an amazing sequence, congratulations!
Thanks for sharing.
Kind regards

Rick Kratzke said...

Those are some beautiful pics and there is a couple that get the "pricless" rating.

Whitetail Woods Blog / Blackpowder Shooting

Carol said...

What a wonderful series of photos..I have an Owl box..I guess I need to watch it closer. I have many squirrels in the yard..havn't seen a baby yet.

Dominic Gendron said...

Very interesting photo-reportage! Lovelly story and nice images;)

Montanagirl said...

Great post! That's terrific you caught all the action.

Brad Myers said...

What an awesome capture, to watch this would have been worth the price of admission but to be able to photograph it also, well that was just icing on the cake.

Ruth's Photo Blog said...

Thanks for sharing this most interesting series.They are cute,when they are not causing trouble.
Blessings,Ruth

hillgrandmom said...

What wonderful photographs!

Wendy said...

You honestly see the most amazing stuff, I can't get over these pictures. Those babies are so sweet!

Willard said...

An amazing series and tack sharp as usual.

Coy said...

Great series Hannibal! Its always special capturing animals doing something interesting.