Good morning everyone! It’s a beautiful, sunny fall morning, the birds are busy, the chipmunks are chipping, Jasper is chasing, things are normal. But I have noticed something. I had 7 chipmunks coming this summer, then it dropped to 6, now it’s down to 5 coming each day. But why? It’s too early for them to hide away for the winter and none of them have to cross the street, so no car problems. Hard to figure why they would stop coming around. Suddenly this morning the crows and blue jays really start squawking. It’s the alarm calls. Muffin wants the door open so she can see better. She knows that alarm call means some interesting action outside. We both look around along the ground, probably a cat, though the birds seemed more excited than usual. A hawk, or owl perhaps? I start looking in the trees.
There it is! It’s a pine marten. I haven’t seen one of those critters for a long time. Beautiful little animals, but…deadly enemies of squirrels and chipmunks, two of the main meals for the pine marten. That’s what happened to the two chipmunks without a doubt. That warning call has come many times and I have not seen what the problem was, because I was not looking in the right spot. Pine marten are kind of like a large weasel, or a small otter, which they are relatives. Marten will go after weasels too. Weasels are another deadly enemy of the squirrels and chipmunks. And because there are a lot of chipmunks here right now, that would attract their enemies. It’s too bad he stayed hidden enough behind branches that I couldn’t get a picture. And it’s another of these critters that doesn’t like to sit still unless it’s after something. I hope it doesn’t stay around too much or I could lose more of my chipmunks. But it would be nice to get a good picture of one.
Today we get the last of the zinnia pics, I hope you will enjoy their bright and colorful beauty, the orange zinnia at the top compliments of Cicco. Have a wonderful Wednesday and God bless!
Steve and Muffin.
©2020 Steve McLeod.