Troutbirder II

Troutbirder II
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Sunday, January 16, 2011

Mission Impossible!

We've had lots of ice and even more snow on top of that, so far this winter. That makes it especially hard on all the wild creatures to survive here in Bluff Country. I do feed the birds with black oil sunflower seeds, mixed nuts, plenty of suet and the cheapo big box variety of mixed seed which gets tossed on the ground as well. There are two platform feeders, a prized green and yellow "John Deere" hanging one and another hanging variety that closes automatically when a squirrel, racoon or other large creature climbs on the perch. The amount of food being consumed each day has increased exponentially.

The large hole in an oak tree in the back yard (our house is surrounded by oak and white pine) is inhabited by a large family of squirrels. Although they are exercised daily by my large GSD, they still manage to spend much time grazing contentedly on sunflower seeds. I had for a few years tried various stratagems, other than armed violence, to deter them . Greasing the poles upon which the platform feeders sat was only one of the unsuccessful stratagems . The following video will demonstrate why I gave up on the deterence plan.

video
Oh and I forget to mention, of late a herd of deer have been joining the feast, and more importantly arousing the kenneled dog. Since he can't chase after them, he attempts to deter their intrusion upon his territory by insane barking, usually about 2 a.m. in the morning. Our human neighbors are all nice people but I'm getting worried about phone calls. Grrrrr.

20 comments:

  1. Rare for us in the south, we have had snow/ice for a week. We have noticed many deer and birds also. The squirrels....I gave up on deterring them a long time ago...they should all join the circus they are so acrobatic! Hope you have an enjoyable day!

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  2. Yes, my Minnesota friend say the deer eat from her bird feeder. It is interesting that they can't get down to any vegetation because of the snow. We have a lot of dear in our populated ares because of the two rivers that run through it.

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  3. I feel as though I am feeding the entire neighborhood as well. Interesting note- A few mile south of here in Brentwood A rufous hummingbird is wintering at a hummingbird feeder. Rufous hummingbirds come from the West in winter. This is the second year this one has been in Brentwood. The people who put up the feeder keep it from freezing with a 100 watt bulb hung near it. I left my feeder up, but no luck for me.

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  4. Thanks for the cute video. It does a great job of showing why we haven't been able to deter them. We also have deer visiting our yard on a fairly regular basis, but we don't have a dog. Oh, the joys of living in the woods!

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  5. Those *&^% deer..they eat at our feeders too..Chance chases them out of the yard. Luckily he is indoors at night..and doesn't bark..poor Baron just wants to protect his area.

    Our squirrel population is down..as is our Chipmunk population..they shouldn't tease a Border Collie:)

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  6. I think there's a lot of animals out foraging for food this winter. Around here, there will be a lot of them dying - they eat hay, but they can't really digest it properly - hence they can starve to death on a full stomach. My brother has already seen a nice Whitetail Buck succumb to starvation.

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  7. I promise you, a squirrel baffle will end that problem for you! I promise, promise, promise!

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  8. What is that contraption you put up? You mentioned a "GSD" but I don't know what that stands for. That squirrel is very athletic! Almost looks like you gave it agility training!

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  9. Are you going to take Baron with you on your trip to Florida this year? You mentioned on my blog that you're looking for good birding spots. Consider visiting Wakulla Springs if you make it to the Big Bend area. Ichetucknee is another good one. Have fun!

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  10. I love this squirrel video, even though I have seen it before I still laugh every time I see it. I wish I could find a DVD of the entire program.

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  11. I too gave in to the squirrels. I found it was easier to buy more sunflowers, but I put out corn as well. I put a 1/4 x6" lag bolt on a piece of wire and can screw a ear of corn on it.I also have a shelled corn feeder, but the sunflowers still taste good. My little dog gets some added running in also. Saw some large groups of deer today.Put a salt lick away from your home and hope they stay on the outskirts.

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  12. I'm in the same boat. Still have over a foot of snow on the ground, and suddenly there are deer footprints coming from all directions to the feeder. Haven't caught them in the act, but they're there. No squirrel problems tho.

    And thanks for stopping by.

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  13. I know all too well how expensive it can be to feed every critter within a square mile of the feeders. Oh well, what can you do?

    And don't be too hard on Baron -- he's just doing his job. :)

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  14. Those squirrels can be wily critters! Heck, I'll borrow your deer heard for a while! Send 'em on down. :c)

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  15. I happen to love squirrels and don't mind them at my feeders. I find that giving them their own platform feeders and keeping it stocked works a lot towards keeping them away from the bird feeders:-) Love the video...wonder why he doesn't just start with the pole where the food is. My squirrels would. Fox squirrels know right where the food is and don't waste any time getting to it.

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  16. First off I have to say I love the photo of you and Mrs. T with the grands. You look so happy and they are adorable kids.

    I had to give up feeding the birds in my backyard because of the squirrels. I didn't mind the squirrel visits, but when Piper was alive he did. He would lay in wait until they weren't looking and then he would pounce. Killed quite a few of the critters and of course brought them to me as a gift. I got tired of seeing them dangling dead in his mouth. I don't think my new puppy will do the same, but I didn't put out seed this year anyway.

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  17. That video is crazy! Industrious critters!

    I fill my main feeder (the one I can see from my kitchen window) with Safflower because the squirrels won't eat it. It's a bit more expensive but I use about a 1/10 of what I would use if the squirrels were interested. I fill the feeder a lot less.

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  18. We've finally recognized the fact that if we want to feed the birds, we're going to feed the squirrels as well. No matter what we do to deter them, there's always one squirrel who will work and work and find a way. Then he runs out to teach the others. Love the photographs.

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  19. Usually we have quite a few deer living in our city. I haven't seen them for months. Now seeing your photo I think I shall make hubby take me on a photo shoot this weekend to go find them! :)

    xo Catherine

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  20. I hear you about worrying about phone calls. The poor deer gotta eat, of course. Too bad there's little "happy medium" here, but I can understand the need for uninterrupted sleep, too.

    I'm going to have to reposition one of our bird feeder poles. The raccoons are slowly but surely pulling it down, down, down.

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