Game On Dude!

Normally when it’s been ‘game on’ in the past, it means I’m trying to match wits with a certain blonde knucklehead. This time however, we’re talking about a totally different game.

I’ve tried, really I have. Living in an urban setting, there is a surprisingly diverse wildlife population. Foxes, all sorts of songbirds, a couple of mangy coyotes, an owl, a pair of hawks, some raccoons and of course, squirrels. I enjoy watching them as they adapt to city life and have managed to co-habitat easily with them. That is, except…for the squirrels which seem to be some sort of spin-off from a Hell’s Angels fur gang, minus leather jackets. Lately they’ve become even more bold.

Source filched from the web

Oh sure, we all like to think of our little Sciuridae fur-iends as impossibly cute and even entertaining. Isn’t the one above just beyond adorable? Yeah right. The ones in my neighborhood are a lot more like this one. They’ve eaten screens, chewed ginormous holes in the trash and recycle bins to scrap out that lone tiny piece of stuck cheese in the discarded pizza box and left giant holes in the compost bins. Ordinarily I wouldn’t mind it they stuck to the compost bins and enjoyed a strawberry hull or two, but crimmin-Italy…not the dang window screen…again!!

Source: another filched image from the Web

Less than two weeks ago, the most brazen of the 3 or 4 that have been terrorizing gracing the Ranch from large tree in the front yard chewed through the screen in the kitchen presumably to snack on some bananas. Must be offspring from the one from a few years ago that broke in through that same screen and devoured a package of brownies on the counter. Yesterday as we were returning from our early morning walk, we arrived to find a blur whiz past us. Naturally the Ninja huntress took off after it. She nearly caught him too. Sure gave him a scare as he double timed it up the utility pole just out of jaw’s reach.

Meanwhile, back at the scene of the crime, I realized we had caught him ‘screen-handed’ though by the time I retrieved Elsa from chasing him, the only thing left was yet another torn screen in the exact same spot as the prior 2 times. Little bastard. If it only happened a few times every 4 or 5 years, I probably wouldn’t be so cranky about it. But this was less than two weeks ago!! So I went out to the garage to see if I still had any rat traps. While I didn’t find a rat trap, I did find a couple of mouse traps and baited them with some peanut butter. Not 30 minutes later that same hoodlum snatched the glob of PB off one and triggered the other one from the window sill. Are you freaking kidding me??!!

Ok, pal…it’s game on now and I’m going full nuclear. I’m going full Bill Murray from “Caddyshack” and plan to catch that little rat bastard. Have you ever been victimized by a rogue gangster squirrel? While I consider myself a major animal and wildlife lover, this. has. got. to. stop. We’ll be visiting our friendly hardware store this morning to stock up on armament.

Live, love, bark! ❤︎

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89 thoughts on “Game On Dude!

  1. Pingback: Monday Moanings | Tails Around the Ranch

  2. camparigirl

    Maybe I should reconsider my stance on squirrels. My husband is hellbent on getting rid of them by any means possible (either than poison, apparently there are traps he researched) but I have been against as they provide endless entertaining and exercising opportunities for the dogs who chase them to no avail. But I will cross the line at house damage!

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  3. daisymae2017

    They’re cute to a point. Let’s talk about chipmunks since we’re talking about Squirrels. I know what you probably thinking why Chipmunks their not Squirrels. Well Here is a fun fact about Chipmunks they are an endangered Species and their called a Striped Squirrel. Here are some links if you’re interested in checking them out. They Are: https//www.google.com/searchq?=Chipmunks&oq=Chipmunks&aqs=chrome..69i57j0I5.10560j0j8&sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8#q=chipmunks+facts(Striped+Squirrel) and https://www.google.com/search?q=Chipmunks&oq=Chipmunks&aqs=chrome..69i57j0I5.1050j8&sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8#q=chipmunk+facts
    My mother had a pet Squirrel when she was younger be he turned out to be destructive. She said the Squirrels name was Georgie. So much for killing chipmunks.

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  4. KB

    Shyla actually caught a tree squirrel once. Ours are not as big as yours (we have the littler mountain ones). I screamed so loudly that she dropped him. My vet said that was a good thing because squirrels can seriously hurt the eyes of dogs who catch them. Who’d have thunk?

    How about a relocation program? It does sound like that one has got to move away!

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  5. Jan K

    I have heard these creatures dancing and carrying on above my head in our attic. I have seen how destructive they can be on my bird feeders. I don’t want them in my house.
    Have you ever tried the electronic devices they make to deter mice and squirrels? They have really worked for us! When we heard them upstairs it was because the device had gone dead. If you need more details, let me know!

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  6. Michael (GoldenKali.com)

    Oh yeah, been there. Back in Livermore I had a two year running feud (WAR!) with those furry little bastards. They were tearing up my patio cushions for their nest which turned out to be located in the vent for my microwave. I found that out when I stuck my arm deep in the vent and starting pulling out the nesting which included the cushion stuffing. One of the vermin was “home” at the time and came scurrying out along my arm and launching himself off my shoulder before running away. I became Elmer Fudd for the rest of that summer hunting with rags soaked in ammonia while spewing verbal abuse. Of course they mocked me the entire time from the fence and roof cackling and watching me with those alien bug eyes.

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    1. Tails Around the Ranch Post author

      LOL, I can totally picture that scene! And I share in your aggravation. I’m armed to the teeth now hope the offending demon won’t be coming through the screen. He clearly is not a fan of a well placed slingshot on the rear flank. 😈

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  7. LB Johnson

    The Chicagoland squirrels are pretty laid back compared to yours. My husband and I are about 20 miles from downtown in one of the outlying Villages that has a BIG park with a river so lots of wildlife. They even had a cougar once many years ago that was darted and removed to another area. Our squirrels stay in the spruces on the empty lot that was purchased next to our home when it was built. There seems to be plenty of food there, as they don’t bother anything in the house or garage. But a coworker had squirrels eat the wiring out of her husband’s truck in the garage!

    LB and Abby Lab

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    1. Tails Around the Ranch Post author

      Yeah…they can be incredibly destructive. They ate the cable at a previous house. I don’t mind urban wildlife, in fact, rather enjoy co-existing with them. But when they break into the house like a common burglar…well I draw the line. 🙂

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  8. My Golden Life

    We used to get mice and voles every now and then. At first I didn’t want to use the traps, but it got to the point where we had to replace the screens on the crawl space vents with more expensive ones. That’s when I decided I’d had enough. We got the Terminix guy out to the house and now the little critters are staying outside where they belong. And the neighbors’ cat is probably having mouse sandwiches for lunch every day.

    As for the squirrels, they ARE cute BUT – and that’s a BIG “but” they can be destructive. The good thing for us is that we have Ducky – the Champion Squirrel Hunter – and no window sills. Ducky’s over at the oak tree now, watching two of them play and hoping they’ll fall so she can grab them. She JUST missed one of them! It made it to safety just as she spotted it. 😖 Curses! Foiled again!

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    1. Tails Around the Ranch Post author

      They drive Elsa nuts and came so very close to bagging this criminal when we came home. Had the leash not gotten tangled around some wrought iron and slowed her down by a second, she’d have been noshing on squirrel stew. She turns me into a human kite when she sees them on our walks. Woosh! 😉

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  9. ATCAD

    Evil squirrels built nest in Mommy’s car and messed up the heater. And there is a brave squirrel that goes in the backyard with Fenris & Tuiren, we all (including us cats) chase it.

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    1. Tails Around the Ranch Post author

      They can be horribly destructive and I definitely draw the line when they start breaking into the house! On the one hand I like for Elsa to catch one (one less squirrel in the world) but on the other, who knows what health issues they could cause her.

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  10. LP

    Squirrels can be so destructive! We have had squirrels completely destroy some of our wooden bird feeders and bird houses! And they have chewed at our garbage cans etc. Sucks. Hope you can find a solution that doesn’t hurt them but keeps them away from your home/screens!!

    the critters in the cottage xo

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  11. Genevieve Petrillo

    Squirrels are brazen, nasty, and annoying enough from a distance – and I DO keep my distance. These guys are WAAAAY to close to home. Stealing brownies? Eating screens? NO. This is not cool. You have met your match, Squirrels…

    Good luck.
    Cupcake

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  12. FACE Foundation

    Oh my gosh, what a bad squirrel! Have had to deal with them in the garden but never had one mess with the screens before. Hopefully you will find a trap he can’t outwit and then take him out to the country where he belongs. 🙂

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  13. mommakatandherbearcat

    One of my fondest memories of my childhood is “helping” my grandfather take trapped squirrels from his garden to the local park. I’m always awed by how little fear they seem to possess of us and our furbabies. And they’re not shy about it either! I’ve seen a couple pictures of squirrels taunting cats from the other side of a window. Ugh.

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    1. Tails Around the Ranch Post author

      These city gangsters are horrid teasers of pets and sadly any efforts to trap and release miles away usually is futile-they are wildly territorial and invariably beat us home from the drop off. I am now armed with several ‘natural’ way to discourage their presence so I hope they get the hint they are not welcome in the window sill or even remotely close to the house. 🐿

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  14. Jodi Stone

    Dude…we had one in our attic…that f*cker!! You remember that story? And how we removed him…I’d actually forgotten when I was rooting for that squirrel last week. Get. Rid. Of. It.

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    1. Tails Around the Ranch Post author

      LOL, having been there when one died in the attic, in the summer-gah!… I plan to take all necessary steps to get rid of these pests. Having squirrels around have certainly ‘juiced up’ my vocabulary if nothing else (as if I need that kind of help 😈).

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  15. maisiethenewfieandcompany

    Rats with fluffy tails, they are the worst! We have battled home destruction and I really thought my husband was going to lose it in our old house because we would wake to them scurrying around above our heads in the attic at about 5:00am. They would chew through the fascia of our beautiful victorian and we finally lined all the edges and corners with metal which seemed to help. One day a squirrel head popped through the filler piece on our window air conditioner! I hate them! Good luck on your hunt.

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  16. tippysmom2

    Oh no! I have never had one manage to make it’s way into my house. That would be horrible. They do like to scratch and gnaw on my deck, which really irritates me since they have about 10 acres of woods to roam around in. Why is my deck more attractive than the trees?! I like some of the above suggestions. Maybe mothballs or garlic and hot sauce on the screen. Wouldn’t hut him, but might deter him from chewing. I would suggested electrifying the screen, but then you might forget and get zapped yourself.

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    1. Tails Around the Ranch Post author

      I’m thinking about a scat pad, if I can figure out how to rig it in the window sill. For now we have a mouse trap which hasn’t hurt them but scares the be-Jesus outa them. Well that and a well placed slingshot hit to the bum. 😉

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  17. Rowena

    Sorry to hear of your troubles with the squirrels. We don’t have them here and to be they just look adorable and I’d love to bring a couple home, although importing foreign plants and animals has caused many environmental disasters.
    One idea I had was to paint some of that stuff you use to stop people from biting their fingernails around the screen. Or, perhaps you could use an essential oil of some type to deter it. It’s definitely time to show it who is boss and make sure you come out on top.
    Best of luck and keep me posted.
    xx Rowena

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    1. Tails Around the Ranch Post author

      Yes, I’ll give them credit for being pretty cute but they are so incredibly destructive. A slingshot to the back side has has given at least one of ’em a level of pause in terms of thinking about coming close to the house. 😈

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    1. Tails Around the Ranch Post author

      They are adorably cute (and very destructive). I just wish they’d leave my house alone. The first break-in was on the original metal screen. They went through that like it was nothing. I can’t find any stronger screening short of prison bars. 😉

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  18. B Harmony

    We have not had squirrels as aggressive as that, and I would also not tolerate it, but I would not be able to kill it either. 😳

    We have huge feeders and would need to fill them every other day because of the squirrels and chipmunks. No more. A man at our monthly flea market makes squirrel proof bird feeders and the squirrels and chipmunks go elsewhere for their meals.

    This guy needs a serous smack down. Costly repairs like that mean game on for sure.

    Eugene, Lily Belle, and I shall watch for updates!

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  19. Pit

    Like Kate said, we, too, have tons of squirrels here, but so far they have only emptied our bird-feeders. We must have some bigger (nocturnal) animal(s), though, as frequently our birdfeeders were thrown down and the hangings [in one case really sturdy wire] totally bent. I suspect its a raccoonWouldn’t you or the Ninja want to come by and guard the bird-feeders? 😉
    Have a great weekend, Pit

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    1. Tails Around the Ranch Post author

      Birdfeeders in this neighborhood are an open buffet for squirrels. Even those supposedly squirrel proof. They have insatiable appetites. I use to root for the foxes catching them for dinner but their numbers have dwindled with all the high density development. A slingshot has (so far) been fairly effective. Fingers crossed they are trainable to stay away. 😉

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      1. Pit

        Hm, I’m not that good a shot. So the sling-shot option is not for me. Besides: I really don’t want to sit there from dawn to dusk. I would love to enlist the help of our kitties, but they frequently have other ideas of how to spend their day. Mostly snoozing away that is! 😉

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  20. lapaylor

    I have a memory of my mother sitting outside with a bb gun trying to discourage pigeons. Squirrels are so annoying and destructive. One strewn everything from recycling into the yard, and baby Cole got some tinfoil with cheese on it, and required medical intervention. One of my idiot neighbors feeds them on purpose. So we also now find empty peanut shells too. I’d like to sit with a waterblaster and wait for him to come out with peanuts.

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    1. Tails Around the Ranch Post author

      Elsa has taken up the cause but usually is on a leash when they’re in the front yard. She has had a couple of near catches. Not sure what she’d do with it once caught, but I don’t plan on risking a potential bite from a hoodlum squirrel. 😉

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  21. Amy

    Cheeky bugger. I wonder if one of those bug zappers, laid strategically where he likes to break in, might shock him. Please, no shotguns. Maybe a large, hungry cat.

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    1. Tails Around the Ranch Post author

      No guns for sure. We do have a slingshot that popped him in his flanks yesterday. He was pretty shocked with that. I might try one of those pads that discourage dogs and cats from being on furniture/counters that provide a pulsed jolt. Have to see what can be rigged up. I try to live in harmony with nature but this guy really irritates me at the unadulterated chutzpah he has chewing through the screen twice in less than 2 weeks. It’s not like there aren’t other food sources around. Grrr

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  22. edgar62

    No, we don’t have squirrels here. Last wildlife I had an encounter with was the emu pair that went walking through the town and up into this area. When we first moved here, we used to see a lot an Kangaroos , but not so many since the land was fenced off and houses built. Even then I still saw them from time to time, but not so much now. Good luck with your pesky antagonists.

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      1. edgar62

        Sadly I suppose that’s true. We don’t have them here so probably for many they are really cute, furry animals – so what’s your problem with these lovable little things?? Don’t include me in that, I know different…

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Tails Around the Ranch Post author

        As a rodent, they are very destructive to trees and are completely larcenous when it comes to food of any kind. Far too opportunistic which I could live if they didn’t break into the house by eating window screens.

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