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Author: CrestlineKathy Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: of 31087  
Subject: Squirrels and nuts Date: 3/28/2004 12:24 PM
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I met a man last night who told me that feeding squirrels raw peanuts or any kind of nut would kill them because they don't have the enzymes to digest them, yet I've been feeding my squirrels nuts for 2 years now and they are still alive. Believe it or not, I can tell which one is which after interacting with them so much, they have different personalities just like my cats. Anyway, does anyone know if there is any truth to his story? Weve lost of lot of pine trees up here due to the bark beetle (I'm in the San Bernardino Mnts) and fires so I try to supplement their diet with something to make up for the loss of pine nuts. Would sunflower seeds be better for them or is he telling me an old wives tale?

Thanks,
Kathy
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Author: ogrecat Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 13684 of 31087
Subject: Re: Squirrels and nuts Date: 3/28/2004 12:29 PM
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Would sunflower seeds be better for them or is he telling me an old wives tale?



http://www.newton.dep.anl.gov/askasci/bio99/bio99463.htm



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Author: jfruhbauer Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 13685 of 31087
Subject: Re: Squirrels and nuts Date: 3/28/2004 12:51 PM
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I try to supplement their diet with something to make up for the loss of pine nuts.

This online store has a selection of various squirrel feeds.

http://www.birdsforever.com/sqfood.html

Jennifer

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Author: 0x6a74 Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 13686 of 31087
Subject: Re: Squirrels and nuts Date: 3/28/2004 1:31 PM
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I met a man last night who told me that feeding squirrels raw peanuts or any kind of nut would kill them because they don't have the enzymes to digest them, yet I've been feeding my squirrels nuts for 2 years now and they are still alive. Believe it or not, I can tell which one is which after interacting with them so much, they have different personalities just like my cats. Anyway, does anyone know if there is any truth to his story? Weve lost of lot of pine trees up here due to the bark beetle (I'm in the San Bernardino Mnts) and fires so I try to supplement their diet with something to make up for the loss of pine nuts. Would sunflower seeds be better for them or is he telling me an old wives tale?


i've been feeding my guys for over ten years and they're still alive....

they do have different personalities..... one was with me for seven years
(and the books say their life-expectancy is only two or three)

'mine' do prefer sunflower seeds ... and walnuts ...
i also feed them corn
and they also get acorns from the neighborhood.

and they love rose-buds
and Bamboo shoots (grrrr)


-j

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Author: CrestlineKathy Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 13688 of 31087
Subject: Re: Squirrels and nuts Date: 3/28/2004 1:55 PM
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<<This online store has a selection of various squirrel feeds.

http://www.birdsforever.com/sqfood.html

>>

Funny you should pick tghis store...it is located right up here about 5 miles from me in Blue Jay. All the shops up here sell 5 and 10 pound bags of peanuts with pictures of squirrels on them, I just wanted to make sure they wouldn't harm them and yes I'm aware of the don't feed the wildlife mentality and if this mountain were thriving I would agree but we lost nearly 50,000 acres of trees to the fires and another 250,000 acres to bark beetles and within the next 10 years, virtually every pine tree will have died...seriously, we are losing every single pine tree and yes we are replanting other trees that will be resistant to the bark beetle and will provide food for the squirrels but in the meantime we will lose our squirrels if we don't support them in this time of need. I don't pick them up, dress them and have tea parties with them like kittens but I do feed them and I know the majority of the people up here do as well. We love our squirrels and don't want to lose them.

I think i'll go over to this store today and see what other foods I can find to supplement their diet and give them all the nutirnts they need.

Thanks,
Kathy

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Author: CrestlineKathy Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 13689 of 31087
Subject: Re: Squirrels and nuts Date: 3/28/2004 2:04 PM
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<<and they also get acorns from the neighborhood.>>

2 years ago we had acorns galore but we haven't had any since, do the oak trees only produce acorns every few years or are all the oak trees on the mountain sick as well?

Thanks,
Kathy



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Author: 0x6a74 Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 13690 of 31087
Subject: Re: Squirrels and nuts Date: 3/28/2004 2:15 PM
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<<and they also get acorns from the neighborhood.>>


2 years ago we had acorns galore but we haven't had any since, do the oak trees only produce acorns every few years or are all the oak trees on the mountain sick as well?


i've been told that One oak tree will only fruit every other year....

so that in any year, half the trees will fruit.

maybe sick. maybe drought. maybe fires.


)>:

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Author: jfruhbauer Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 13691 of 31087
Subject: Re: Squirrels and nuts Date: 3/28/2004 2:28 PM
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we lost nearly 50,000 acres of trees to the fires and another 250,000 acres to bark beetles and within the next 10 years, virtually every pine tree will have died...seriously, we are losing every single pine tree and yes we are replanting other trees that will be resistant to the bark beetle

We too have had a lot of pine/piñon loss due to the bark beetle - I feel for you!

There have been theories here (Santa Fe, NM) about the dying off of piñones - some state that the only reason we have *so* many piñones is due to overgrazing in the last century or so (overgrazing killed the native grasses and so the piñones could take hold) - now the dying back of the piñon is restoring the envionment to what it *should* be.

I dunno if this is correct, I haven't studied it so much, but it is a different take on things.

Jennifer

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Author: swedan Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 13693 of 31087
Subject: Re: Squirrels and nuts Date: 3/29/2004 8:44 AM
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How does the guy propose wild squirrels cook their food?

Dan

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Author: RocketsMomma Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 13694 of 31087
Subject: Re: Squirrels and nuts Date: 3/29/2004 9:21 AM
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How does the guy propose wild squirrels cook their food?



Perhaps they've learned to shell the nuts then leave them on a dark rock under reflected sunlight from a window? Sort of a magnified thing.

RM ;-p

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Author: 99frannie One star, 50 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 13699 of 31087
Subject: Re: Squirrels and nuts Date: 3/29/2004 3:49 PM
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I realize this is the Gardening board but, since we are on the subject of squirrels, I have a question. Yesterday, my dog must have caught a squirrel and I found him sniffing this poor thing. I put the dog inside and came out to check out the injured squirrel. It must have had a broken rear leg cause it was trying to drag itself away. I ran inside and tried to reach someone to help me either pick him up in a box and bring him to animal hospital or something. Everyone told me to leave it alone since it could bite and I was really uncertain what the local animal warden would even offer to do.

When I got back outside he was gone. What would you have done. I can't get that poor squirrel out of my mind - suffering like that.

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Author: Trini209 Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 13700 of 31087
Subject: Re: Squirrels and nuts Date: 3/29/2004 9:13 PM
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I would have killed it as quickly as I could, as humanely as I could, with whatever blunt weapon I could find, even if it was my shoe.

The local animal warden would do the same thing, and why allow the animal to suffer while I hunted down the warden?

Unless, that is, you're prepared to spend several hundred dollars to some vet to set the bone and house the animal till it could take care of itself. Personally, if I had several hundred dollars to spend on animals other than my own pets, I would donate the money to the local animal shelter.

Trini



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Author: lilacinn Two stars, 250 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 13702 of 31087
Subject: Re: Squirrels and nuts Date: 3/29/2004 10:05 PM
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Hi,

Feeding squirrels for years -- mostly sunflowers and walnuts (cracked -- why make them gnaw?) but sometimes unsalted in-shell peanuts. Never noticed any ill effects. Recognize the same ones year after year due to scars, fur anomolies, etc.

I like to collect pieces of bark, spread them with peanut butter and then roll in bird seed/sunflowers seeds. They go wild for this treat and (I guess) it's better than using salty white-flour crackers as the base for the peanut butter. I guess pine cones would work as well.

Make sure there is plenty of water around. We have a little 8" high crock on the picnic table, kept filled with fresh water, and the squirrels and chipmunks have learned that it's their drinking foutain.

Good luck -- it's nice of you to look out for them in their year of need.


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Author: DeltaDog2 Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 13707 of 31087
Subject: Re: Squirrels and nuts Date: 4/1/2004 2:15 PM
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I realize this is the Gardening board but, since we are on the subject of squirrels, I have a question. Yesterday, my dog must have caught a squirrel and I found him sniffing this poor thing. I put the dog inside and came out to check out the injured squirrel. It must have had a broken rear leg cause it was trying to drag itself away. I ran inside and tried to reach someone to help me either pick him up in a box and bring him to animal hospital or something. Everyone told me to leave it alone since it could bite and I was really uncertain what the local animal warden would even offer to do.

When I got back outside he was gone. What would you have done. I can't get that poor squirrel out of my mind - suffering like that.


I mostly lurk but thought I might be able to help with this question.

Depending on how badly it was hurt, I would try to get it to wildlife rescue. If it was obviously too badly hurt to survive, killing it is probably the most humane, but I know myself well enough to know I couldn't actually do that. When I was a kid my dad and I saw a squirrel that had obviously been hit by a car and was having seizures. It clearly wasn't going to make it and was suffering. My dad put some very thick gloves on and broke its neck (and I cried for about 3 days, probably still would as an adult… I'm a softie!). Probably the most humane solution to a truly hopeless case if you can stomach it.

If it's not that badly hurt, as sounds like the case with the one you had in the yard, I would do everything I could to get it to wildlife rehab. I haven't rescued squirrels (yet) but have dealt with rehab for some critters including a Blue Heron (that was quite a “baby” to catch – normally I know to leave baby birds alone but this one was in trouble). I listed some website references below but here's what I'd do:

-prepare a lidded box or something similar with some padding / towels. Don't use a wire cage as it can hurt itself worse. If you have something that has some air holes already, use that. If not, poke some holes in the lid (if you're in a hurry I'd do this after catching the critter though).
-use gloves or a very thick towel to pick up the squirrel. If at all possible, immobilize its head (first) and feet (second) with my hands or by tightly wrapping the towel.
- put the squirrel in the box and secure the lid WELL.
- put the squirrel and box in a dark, quiet room (preferably warm as well)
- call the wildlife rehab people and wait for instructions. DON'T give the squirrel water or food unless the rehab people tell you to. (if I couldn't get a call back for over 24 hours I might make an exception to this and offer it a little water, but better to wait for the “pros”).

Here are a few sites about dealing with sick / injured / orphaned animals:
http://www.mickaboo.com/wildbird.html
http://www.natureshaven.8m.com/found.html

And a list of wildlife rehab people / places:
http://www.natureshaven.8m.com/nhlinks.html


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Author: 99frannie One star, 50 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 13708 of 31087
Subject: Re: Squirrels and nuts Date: 4/1/2004 2:23 PM
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Thanks DeltaDog2. unfortunately the squirrel is long gone and I keep hoping he can get through this. I agree with you that I don't think I could have killed it. I'll just have to move my bird feeders out of that fenced area for the dog. I have saved your sites and appreciate the helpful suggestion if and when this happens again. Thank you!

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Author: DeltaDog2 Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 13709 of 31087
Subject: Re: Squirrels and nuts Date: 4/1/2004 2:31 PM
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Thanks DeltaDog2. unfortunately the squirrel is long gone and I keep hoping he can get through this. I agree with you that I don't think I could have killed it. I'll just have to move my bird feeders out of that fenced area for the dog. I have saved your sites and appreciate the helpful suggestion if and when this happens again. Thank you!

Yeah, I thought it was probably too late for this particular one. Who knows, maybe he'll heal on his own (one can hope!). He may have even hurt himself falling out of a tree or something and your dog just happened to be sniffing him, although moving the bird feeders is probably a good precaution. It'd be a shame for the squirrels/birds to get hurt, or for your dog to get bit checking out a squirrel, for sure.

I seem to go in streaks of finding various wildlife in the yard, so in case you're like me, hopefully this info will be helpful for the future anyway!

And Kathy.. sorry I forgot to post this for your original question, but I haven't heard this about peanuts before. Our neighbor leaves big pans of peanuts out for the squirrels though, and the population is definitely thriving.


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