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PostPosted: Wed Mar 19, 2014 5:28 pm 
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Joined: Fri Aug 07, 2009 11:56 pm
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Location: Dallas, Texas (zone 8)
Sir Canadian,


The main point I was trying to make, is, it's what's for dinner-

"Some consider squirrel to be the best meat in the woods. On my journey as a chef, I have come to think that it may be the best meat period. The phrase, 'You are what you eat,' befits a squirrel as it does a Spanish acorn-fed pig that are prized so highly by those with means.

But when you think about it, squirrels are hoarders, and after having feasted on a grove of pecans or acorns, their meat is nutty and sweet, buttery and tender. And so a fat, nut-fed squirrel is not only better tasting than any meat in the woods, it can be even better tasting, and much more economical than that Spanish pig that sells for one hundred seventy dollars per pound.

If you were to tell that to a group of my stiletto-heeled pals on a warm Manhattan evening—which I have done—you would be met with textbook female gasps and sideways glances. Those squirrels linger around the soot-covered fire escapes of their studio apartments. Aren’t they really tree rats?

But the truth is that squirrel hunting is more American than apple pie, than Babe Ruth, than a twenty-dollar Manhattan..."


http://www.foxnews.com/opinion/2012/01/22/why-eat-squirrel-really/


Now don't start hollerin' 'bout "faux news", Sir C, we don't get no cable (ever since the lil one was born).


M


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 19, 2014 6:28 pm 
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Joined: Fri Aug 07, 2009 11:56 pm
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Location: Dallas, Texas (zone 8)
Grey Squirrels by Christine Hanrahan-

"According to several sources, the size of the grey squirrel's home range depends on sex. That is, females are said to occupy 'home ranges of approximately 5-15 acres' (2-6 ha) and males 'between 50 and 55 acres' (20-22 ha), particularly in summer months (Banfield 1974). Population density is considered to be, on average, "30 to 75 animals per hundred acres" (40.5 ha) (ibid). Woods (1980) suggests that suitable habitat may have one squirrel per hectare."

"As with most animals in the wild, population density of grey squirrels is tied in part to food supplies. Their favoured food - walnuts, butternuts, and acorns - are not produced in abundance every year. When these staples are scarce, squirrels must find other food locally, disperse to other areas, or starve. And even if they don't starve, poor-quality diet will leave them susceptible to disease and parasites. At such times, there are too many animals for the available food. However, in urban areas where bird feeders are common and a wide variety of other shrubs and trees grow, cyclical reduction of some food sources probably does not have the same impact."

"Summer, and especially fall, are times of plenty with nuts, berries and seeds in good supply. Spring and winter, however, can be lean and this is when they resort to other less-favoured and no doubt less-nutritious food, to stay alive."

Hmmm.


M


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 19, 2014 10:42 pm 
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Joined: Tue Jun 09, 2009 1:11 pm
Posts: 356
Location: Midwest, USDA Z5 / AHS Heat Z5
Local ordinances may prohibit squirrel hunting and may lead to fines and jail time for animal cruelty. In other areas, the law may require a hunting license.

canadianplant wrote:
I bet if you added up the time spent dealing with them and the cost of ammo traps and poison you could replace the damaged plants a few times over .


Poison is just wrong. Besides polluting the land and water, it harms the predators that eat the prey. :evil:

Lead-free ammunition is safer for the animals and humans that live in the environment, and a clean shot may yield a less agonizing squirrel death than the tire of a motor vehicle or the jaws of a predator.

Obviously increasing predation pressure may not eliminate squirrel damage but it will reduce the likelihood of damage, increasing the probability of a plant surviving. Feeding on an abundant local squirrel population can be much more efficient and environmentally friendly than burning fuel on road trips to buy to eat slabs of meat wrapped in plastic packages that were refrigerated and trucked to a grocery store from a distribution center from a meat processing plant.


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 19, 2014 10:57 pm 
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Location: upstate NY zone 6B Location Details
Whenever I see a a cat walk through in the presence of a cat, the squirrels will always run up a tree to start chucking and screaming to warn other squirrels. I have seen the cats around here eat squirrels whole from the head first after playing around with them so if it may be the best solution. The cats here are also known to take out rabbits nearly the same size as themselves. I normally have a few cats that like to hang around my bamboo garden which has probably protected my shoots.

You probably need to get a cat, and train it to hunt squirrels for it's primary food source. Cats are definitely faster than squirrels if they can catch them.


Perhaps leaving the dead carcasses after shooting the squirrels around your bamboo shoots may scare the rest away.

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PostPosted: Wed Mar 19, 2014 11:24 pm 
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Location: Theodore, AL, just south of I-10 and 1 mile from Mobile Bay, barely 8b Location Details
I left 5 dead ones around the bamboo and the foxes carried them off the same night. I didn't see any squirrels yesterday but had more damage today. You'd think they'd learn a lesson, but I may have to spend a little more time and eliminate a few more. I don't live in the city so no ordinances are broken and it's allowable to shoot nuisance animals.


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 20, 2014 2:57 am 
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Location: Midwest, USDA Z5 / AHS Heat Z5
A direct physical defense is more effective at protecting plants because any animal can wander in and cause damage.

If a vulnerable plant is important enough, I'll protect it with a sturdy steel cage or fence.

As deterrent for the smaller grazing mammals, you could experiment with spicing up some shoots with hot peppers. :D
Perhaps paint new shoots with a mix of water, flour, and cayenne, habenero, or bhut jolokia pepper powder.


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PostPosted: Thu Mar 20, 2014 5:49 am 
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Joined: Sat Aug 08, 2009 1:36 am
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Location: zone 3a-4b
Makel

Didnt mean it to sound like I was being all "think of the children" about what you eat. To each.his own. Personally I leave them alone and eating them isnt the norm here. I was talking about the dead squirrel pic. There are quite a few people in my experience that would try to make a stink about it ( not me )

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 20, 2014 6:01 pm 
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Location: Ljubljana, Slovenia
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It wasn't me! I found them like that! :mrgreen:
These two voles checked out today.

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 20, 2014 6:06 pm 
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Location: Seabeck, Washington Zone 8b Elevation: 531 Feet
Egads! Those things look like (well-fed!) rhizome eating machines!


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 25, 2014 1:10 pm 
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Location: Theodore, AL, just south of I-10 and 1 mile from Mobile Bay, barely 8b Location Details
Update: I've been working 12's for the last 4 days and been unable to survey the damage. I came out this morning with a gallon of Habinaro (sp) juice to pour on the remaining shoots and found no additional damage. Seems they got the memo, but the juice is going on anyway.
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 27, 2014 5:18 am 
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I am going with "very humane"

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PostPosted: Thu Mar 27, 2014 12:45 pm 
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Location: Zone 5b/6a Bloomington, INElevation: 770-790 feet Location Details
Bamboo Society Membership: ABS - America
Though this seems like more fun! http://www.rodenator.com/

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 28, 2014 4:24 am 
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Location: upstate NY zone 6B Location Details
I got a rodent problem on my tree peonies where the ones that were still on the nurse root got their cambium layers torn up pretty badly, but luckily it looks like most of them should recover. I guess having a tarp on nearly 4 months takes its toll.

http://stevespeonygarden.blogspot.com/2 ... -give.html

When I took the tarps off, I saw little mice like creatures scram so perhaps they cannot handle not having any cover. Hopefully the cats are diligent on their patrol around these plants, and especially during shooting season.

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 28, 2014 4:10 pm 
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Location: HALIFAX, NS
Sure sounds like voles Steve. Cats will kill them sometimes but they oftentimes they avoid them and rarely eat them - at least here. Best to keep space clear around affected plants as they like to work undercover. Sure hope some of those peonies will recuperate.

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 28, 2014 6:55 pm 
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Location: Ljubljana, Slovenia
Around here, cats love to eat voles, as does my dog. Dog eats whole animal, cats professionally remove only the gallbladder and eat everything else - starting with the head.

Moles must be toxic, because I've never seen cat eating one and I've only once seen my dog biting into mole, which made her puke instantly. I would not believe that If I weren't there to see it.

Largest voles are too big for (normal size :mrgreen: ) cats to eat. Cat will kill it and then play with it for a while, but eventually leave it instead of eating it. When dog catches it, it gets eaten no matter how large the vole is, if she finds one dead on the field or if I kill it - she won't touch it.


Rodenator thingie looks tempting. I'd love to blow them up, but I'm afraid I would blow into air most of the topsoil with some bamboos. They love to make underground chambers right under the bamboo. I'll move most of them and secure them with some wire mesh.

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