June 17, 2005

Squirrel Invasion

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The place where I work – the Oak Hammock Marsh Interpretive Centre – is situated in a restored prairie wetland surrounded by farm fields and stands of native prairie grass. My work station looks out to the west and a huge expanse of sky. The building itself is low-lying, partially sunken into the landscape so as to not interfere with the natural goings-on of wildlife in the marsh, so my window is right at ground level. As such, it's a real boon to me as a nature buff to see critters literally walk by, ranging from Canada geese with fuzzy yellow goslings in tow, to blackbirds, swallows, turtles and field mice to these fellows: Richardson's ground squirrels (also called "beach rats" by my mom). This past week, a family of these squirrels has set up camp in the berm leading up to the window, including six young and at least one adult. These adorable critters measure about six inches in length right now, and they're tame, precocious and very curious. I was able to get within two feet of them to take this shot with the department digi-cam.


Allan L. said...

Too cool! You know me, I love Red and Gray squirrels, but these lil' folks are cute too!

devon said...

haha! craig's granny nanny calls squirrels "fancy rats!"

we have one we named gregor, after the strongbad email.... :)

too cute jeope!

diana said...

Aawww, what little cuties!

Rick Lovell said...

Man, what a great place to work. I envy you your daily association with wildlife. I'm fortunate enough to live in a heavily wooded area with a creek in the back, and we have a local herd of whitetail deer that mozie through all the time. The've devoured all our ornamental plants, but I'd rather have the deer than the flowers, any day.
Great shots of the "beach rats", btw!