Five Little Squirrels: Welcome to the Neighborhood

three baby squirrels

Three of the six baby squirrels, September 2, 2014 Photo courtesy of Jessica B.

A few months ago my friend Jessica rescued half a dozen baby squirrels. Two young boys in her neighborhood found them on the ground and brought them to her for help. The squirrels were small, eyes still closed, and unable to survive in the wild on their own. Jess contacted a rescue group who took them in, but they needed a place to release them once they were old enough to be on their own.

Guess whose arm shot up in the air?  Pick me, PICK ME.

I called Connie who works with a few other home-based volunteers the following day. The rescue group, Injured and Orphaned Wildlife, said it would be a few months before the squirrels were ready. They would be in touch when the babies could survive on their own. They want to re-release the squirrels into neighborhoods with established squirrel populations. We definitely qualify.

Last night I got the call. The volunteer asked if she could release them in our garden this morning?

Ann arrived around 10:30 with five young squirrels in tow. They traveled in a wooden nesting box, encased in a larger plastic crate ready to move in to Gardening Nirvana.

the squirrels arrive

The squirrels arrive in the garden

She placed their nesting box under our orange tree and scattered handfuls of fruits and vegetables nearby. After lifting the top of the wooden nest, we stood back and waited.

squirrel nesting box

Placing the nesting box under the orange tree

lifting the lid, vegetables nearby

Ann scatters vegetables nearby, then lifts the lid to the nesting box

They remained huddled together, poor little things, breathing heavily and trying to burrow to the bottom of their cozy box.

five squirrels

Five huddling squirrels

Ann said that once one of squirrels leaves the box, the others usually follow. In our case, two of them shot out within seconds of each other, and raced to the safety of nearby shrubs.

I'm out of here

I’m out of here. One of the first two squirrels to leave the nest

The remaining three hunkered down. I watched for half an hour, but reluctantly had to leave for appointments. Ann asked me to call her if they were still in the box at nightfall. If so, she would return and secure the nesting box to a tree. By mid-afternoon, they had vacated the box. We’ve watched from inside as they explore the garden. What joy!

three trembling squirrels

Three trembling squirrels

I’m grateful for all the caring hearts that brought this to fruition: the two young boys who knew the tiny squirrels needed help, and my friend Jess for taking them in and contacting a rescue group. Special thanks to Connie who takes in these rescues and Ann who delivered the nesting box, with the care and wisdom of someone that’s rescued critters for over 30 years.

23 thoughts on “Five Little Squirrels: Welcome to the Neighborhood

  1. Wonderful, wonderful!! Me too – my hand was in the air “Pick Alys, pick Alys!” The world is a wonderful place full of wonderful people as you have just identified – all doing things because they see a need and get on and attend to it. No fanfare, no news readers, no ‘Today in San Jose five orphaned squirrels who were rescued from certain death by two brave boys, cared for by Connie and delivered by Ann were released into a loving garden and could begin to live as free, wild critters again’…… This is what the real world is doing, not that scaremongering and gossip people call ‘news’. Well done Alys and everybody involved – I love this story! ❤ ❤ ❤

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  2. What delights me most about all this is that two little boys were in rescue mode rather than torment mode. That bodes well for our future generation. They are so fun to watch and the little ones especially. I hope they all find their own sweet spot in your garden to make their homes or at least continue to visit. It’s just wonderful to hear such great news about people still caring for all that lives.

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  3. What a beautiful morning you had Alys. I could watch them cuddle all day long. I’m so happy they’ve come to your garden where they’ll enjoy all the love and attention they deserve. You’re a gem. The garden’s looking so pretty and lush, they must have been very happy to arrive. Were they hopping out in a fairy garden? I hope the exiting squirrels in the hood are welcoming. The little darlings have been thru so much. Such a nice group of you to nurture nature the way you do. BRAVO everyone! Thanks for sharing your story hon, I needed this today xoxoxo

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    • Thanks so much for reading. I’m glad it brought a bit of brightness to your day.

      So far, they’re all getting along. We’ve tossed out a few shelled peanuts here and there, but they seem to be foraging nicely and have established a nest somewhere. Nature is quite amazing. We can tell the new squirrels because they are thinner and not as cautious around us. One of them is quite dark, almost a chocolate brown and a few of the others have almost silvery tails. Quite charming.

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      • Blossum was skinny when she got here too. HA. Wouldn’t it be fun if they stayed friendly? You’ll have a little friendly group of squirrels and birdies sitting with you just like Snow White. 😀

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  4. Welcome Home little squirrels! You got the best home ever in Alys’s beautiful garden! I am sure she will take good care of you! This is big news and the best type of news I want to hear!

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  5. I love squirrels. I know for many they seem them as rodents or a scourge. When my mother was alive it was here against the squirrels and her bird feeder. But I have always loved them. Very inquisitive and bold! In my old house they figured out that the cats couldn’t get out and took to sitting on the windowsill right in front of them to enjoy their nuts. I watched them climb along a chimney where a dog lives daily know the dog couldn’t get out. Rascally characters and very funny.

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  6. Pingback: A Scurry of Baby Squirrels | Gardening Nirvana

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