In general, we love squirrels. They are so cute and playful. They entertain us for hours. There is nothing like watching a squirrel as it bounces through the grass when it’s tall enough to tickle their tummies, or they jump when they are scared. In hot weather, squirrels will sometimes sprawl out on a branch trying to cool off. If they feel threatened, they will fuss and shake their tails at us. Squirrels actually help us because they spread nuts and seeds. They forget about most of these, and in the process plant new trees which is good for the environment. Another benefit to having squirrels is that they are a food source for many other animals, such as hawks, coyotes, and owls, etc.
But, squirrels, as cute as they can be, are pests. First, they chew on anything – trees, wooden swing sets, eaves of houses, fences and even electrical wires. Squirrels also eat birdseed, birdseed that you pay money for and want to feed the birds with. I had to build an obstacle course to keep them from our birdseed because they were taking the lid off the feeder and reaching in and grabbing handfuls of seeds – greedy little critters. We taped the lid on the feeder, but then they just hung from it eating through the holes. This kept the birds from eating so I had to do something.
And finally, as a gardener, squirrels are always eating our crops. This year our tomatoes are having a rough time. There just aren’t that many of them. We have covered them with netting to protect them from the birds and other critters. Well, it just isn’t working. Every day we see squirrels carrying off green tomatoes. Sometimes they just take a bite or two and drop them right under the plant. We are not even sure how they are getting in the netting. It’s weighted down with bricks!
It looks like this year we are growing tomatoes for those pesky squirrels!
If you have any suggestions, other than killing them, on how to get rid of the squirrels eating our produce, please comment below.