Times Require Desperate Measures
heres the deal. I recently purchased a ceramic lighthouse
birdfeeder. I have it hanging from a wrought iron pole at
my bedroom window and theres another finch feeder on
the other side of the pole. The lighthouse is filled with
general wild bird food which brings a variety of birds. What
I didnt expect were the squirrels who came to attack
feeding perches that the lighthouse came with were wooden.
The squirrels completely chewed through them in order to get
to the food. Then Herman came up with a great idea. He took
a plastic coat hanger and cut off perch sized lengths and
put them where the wooden ones were with rubber bands wrapped
around the ends to keep the squirrels from sliding them out.
This also did not work, as the squirrels figured out how to
chew through the plastic as well as how to get rid of the
rubber bands by chewing.
was starting to get out of control with frustration. I mean
theyre squirrels, members of the rodent family, I should
be smart enough to find a way to get around this. As of this
morning, Herman came up with a brilliant idea. He went to
the local country store here called Grooms where they
happen to stock lots of hardware as well as groceries.
Since the squirrels cannot chew through metal (I am making
an assumption here) Herman got six inch long carriage bolts
which fit in the holes where the wooden and plastic perches
had bit the dust.
surprised that he put extra nuts on the ends of the carriage
bolts that he called "lock nuts" to keep the squirrels
from unscrewing the bolts to get in. Picture if you will,
those little paws with little squirrel wrenches busily unscrewing
the carriage bolts! Evidently, Herman was as bugged about
this as I was. He just thought it through methodically before
the finches and hummingbirds seem to go about their dining
business quite well without any upset from squirrels. Must
be squirrels have no fascination with a diet of thistle or
sugar water. What is amazing to me is the fact that in the
aisle of pet food and bird food they even have squirrel food!
Why would anyone bother to feed these rodents? Im sure
there are people who find them adorable. And I for one wouldnt
want anything bad to happen to a squirrel. But I would not
go out of my way to feed them either. I guess it comes down
to choice, and I choose birds.
this writing, I have not seen a squirrel attempt to move those
bolts. I will definitely keep you posted on my quest to rid
my bird feeders of squirrels.
Spira, a native of Cleveland who pursued an acting career
in NYC and Los Angeles, now pursues free lance writing from
Caroga Lake here in Fulton County. Previous columns may be
accessed at her web site www.kathrynskorner.com"