Friday, April 21, 2006
Squirrel Mass in Mass
Last spring, my wife, daughter and I were spending an early spring morning on our back porch watching the birds and the squirrels. We had two large maple trees next to the house. One of the trees had a bad spot in the crotch of the tree that had partially rotted out but made a nice home for a family of squirrels. Lately we had seen momma squirrel and two or three babies but they would quickly leave the tree for the neighbors back yard for daily lessons on how to become an adult squirrel. This morning we watched as both black babies and gray babies started coming out of the crotch of the tree. I happened to have my camera with a telephoto lens and quickly started clicking off pictures. My daughter started counting, I clicked and then asked her how many she counted and she replied "10"! I couldn't believe it and looked for myself and sure enough their were babies all over the place. I took the photo on the left of the 1st ones to emerge. [This 1st group has 5 babies and starting at the bottom we have gray one, 2 black ones, gray one and gray one].Next I swung down to collect the second group that had just came out. By now we thought we had 11 babies but when we looked at the pictures we could see that there were actually 12 baby squirrels on the tree that day. [The group on the right is gray and black on left tree branch and on right tree branch there is black, 2 gray, black, gray and a black on top for 7 which is a total of 12???]Up until this morning, there had only been 3 or 4 babies and they were all gray. It is as if momma squirrel was taking on boarders or something and it didn't make much sense. We knew her and she certainly was not capable of feeding this many babies. She was the only adult we saw this morning. There is absolutely no trickery in the picture taking but it was sure fun watching all of these babies squirrels climbing all over this tree, all playing and chasing each other. The squirrels climbed down the tree and disappeared with the mother, when she appeared and they never came back.
Black squirrels you say, Hogwash! Come on back for more on Black squirrels in Westfield MA, tomorrow.