After I finished mowing the lawn this morning, I had a spare half hour before meeting Mitch for lunch. The sky was lightly overcast and the temperature perfect, so I sat on the lawn with Nemo.
Nemo was only dimly aware of me, though. He was more interested in the squirrel in the walnut tree. The squirrel — a female with several swollen teats (meaning we have baby squirrels around here somewhere) — brazenly descended to the feeding basket.
Pumpkin seeds are a strong attractant for squirrels.
Nemo forgot about me. He began to stalk the squirrel.
Every time the squirrel dipped her head for a seed, Nemo crept forward another foot or two. When the squirrel raised her head, Nemo froze.
When Nemo reached the base of the walnut tree, he sat waiting for a minute or two. The squirrel peered over the edge of the feeding basket, daring Nemo to make a move. Nemo charged. The squirrel flew up the tree, chittering (laughing?).
Nemo and the squirrels do this All. The. Time. It’s the Squirrel Game.
Today, though, Nemo’s siblings got in on the action.
Simon trotted up from some hiding spot on the back of the property. He squeaked at me, and then hopped on the bench to be petted. When he saw the squirrel, he used his claws to drag himself on his belly to the bench’s far edge.
Toto came out of the house and hopped onto the other bench. She was purring, but she stopped when she saw the squirrel. She tensed, and crouched, and gave her ‘bird-cackle’.
I snuck inside the house to grab my camera, then backed away from the action.
The squirrel came down to the basket again. All three cats tensed. Nemo didn’t wait this time: he lunged! Simon darted to assist! Toto prepared to pounce!
The squirrel, with an air of ease, raced up the tree. She stared down, taunting the cats.
From the safety of a lower limb, the squirrel watched us watching her. She was brave, allowing me to creep close enough to take some decent shots. I longed to have my tripod at hand, though. (A telephoto shot can only be so sharp without a tripod.)
The Squirrel Game was still being played outside when I left. I’d have liked to stay to watch the final outcome, but I was already late to meet Mitch for lunch.
For more hot cat-on-squirrel action, check out these previous entries:
- The Blood of a Squirrel, in which Simon kills the enemy
- Weekend at Rosings Park, in which the cats get into all sorts of mischief
- Peanut Battle, in which the cats help us watch birds
- Cat Pictures, demonstrating the power of the internet
Those last two haven’t much to do with squirrels, I must admit.
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