My closest neighbors frequently visit me. They are birds, squirrels, chipmunks, wild turkeys, deer, rabbits, turtles, and for a time, a groundhog. During one cold icy time an Opossum came calling for a night time snack. About a quarter mile away, just past the start of my driveway, there is a family of humans. They and the other nearby people do not visit often.

 

 

 

Deck Visitors

On a daily basis my squirrel, bird, and chipmunk neighbors visit pretty much all year around.

 

An Unexpected Deck Visitors

The unexpected visitor was this butterfly. I happened to glance out my deck door a few days ago and this is what I saw. Yes, it’s a butterfly. I suppose it was having a snack. The squirrels were not around so it had a relaxing afternoon snack. It stayed for longer than I expected, more than time enough for me to take its picture. I have no idea what it found so tasty and small enough for it to eat.  

The lady raccoon posing for the second picture was expected as I had seen her several nights earlier. Tigger, my cat, had made a terrible racket at the door. When I turned on the light to see what was going on I saw this lady and her two children cleaning the tray. I had also recently noticed the squirrel food tray was always empty in the morning and wondered why. I didn’t try to take a picture the first time. I guessed they would run off if I got close enough.  

Last night I decided to see what she would do if I tried to get a picture. I got up close to the glass and aimed the camera. She just looked at me. Her children just kept eating. As you can see the flash didn’t upset her either. The back of one of her little ones is almost visible at the bottom of the picture.  

At first it bothered me that a Raccoon was hanging around. Raccoons have a bad reputation. Then I decided it’s OK for me as I have no outside trash or trashcans for her to mess with. She and her children are a pretty big increase in food cost though.Only at night

Some Deer

At first it bothered me that a Raccoon was hanging around. Then I decided it’s OK for me as I have no outside trash or trashcans for her to mess with. She and her children are a pretty big increase in food cost though. I may also be in danger of running out of Kaytee Backyard Wildlife food from Foodland.

 

Hummingbirds

On a sad note, my hummingbird feeder has remained almost untouched all summer. It is still almost half full and summer is almost over. I have seen only one or two now and then where I usually see several every day and fill the feeder more or less weekly. I wonder what has gone awry.

 

Other Neighbors

 I keep a salt block near the edge of my yard. The team that keep the yard reasonably well groomed do not see it as a yard. They see it as a hillside that has to be weed eater-ed? (eaten.) Occasionally, I see deer near the salt. Once it was a father, mother, and two children; buck, doe, and fawns. I have also seen as many as five turkeys ambling along down there.

 

During the really cold and icy winter days in early 2014, I had an opossum visit my deck for bird seed. When I accosted him he glanced at me and went back to eating. He was really ugly.

 

For a couple of years there was a groundhog living in the ruins of an abandoned cinder block cesspool down that hillside. I have not seen it recently. It either moved away or got trapped under the rubble of its home. I guess I will never know. It ran for dear life at the slightest noise. So do the deer and turkeys.

 

Squirrels are by far the most outgoing of my neighbors. They are active, sometimes playing, sometimes fighting. If I start for the deck door they will they watch and hang around until the last minute before making a mad dash all the way home.  They often show up in pretty large numbers. I have seen as many as eight on my deck at one time.

 

Deer often travel in pairs or as Mom and children, usually two. Dad does not venture close to humans very often.

 

Squirrels are by far the most outgoing of my neighbors. They are active, sometimes playing, sometimes fighting. If I start for the deck door they will they watch and hang around until the last minute before making a mad dash all the way home.  They often show up in pretty large numbers. I have seen as many as eight on my deck at one time.

 

 

 

Squirrels

As I write this, I am watching two squirrels chase each other around my deck. They stop often to grab a snack from the cookie tin filled with Backyard Wildlife Food. A note on the food bag says the stuff will keep squirrels away from birdfeeders. Maybe so, but I have no bird feeders so I will never know.

I have discovered brown squirrels and gray squirrels do not get along very well. Actually, the gray squirrels do not get along with each other very well. The same is true of the brown squirrels. Sometimes my cat, Tigger, helps me watch.

Birds sometimes stop by to snack on the Backyard Wildlife Food. The food bag says nothing about how to keep birds away from squirrel food. Now, there is a mother cardinal as well. She and a squirrel are sharing the grain on the cookie tin.

 

Next Time

 

There are three squirrels having breakfast as I draw the blinds today. I wonder what I will view when next I open them.

 

Portions of this article were originally printed in the August 25, 2015 issue of The Lewis County Herald of Vanceburg, Kentucky.