Monday, May 28, 2018

Another Day, Another Chipmunk Tail

Who thinks chipmunks are cute? I do, I do!

I have lived in my home for 24 years and never saw a chipmunk until this spring. Lots of squirrels, rabbits, even skunks, but never a chipmunk.

At first I thought, oh how cute, and I enjoyed watching them bound along......
.....until they moved into my patio area and made a home behind my cement steps. That's a little too close for comfort.

You see...when I spent summers in PEI there were lots of chipmunks. And while they were as cute as they could be they also enjoyed living in my basement, chewing on electrical wiring and chewing up the insulation. I'm not good at killing rodents but it was them or me! I trapped them and let them loose in the forest but they ran back to the house faster than I could!!

I'm not able to reach the nest behind the steps because of a cement overhang from the doorsill. Lily has been doing her best to chase them out of our patio and will sit patiently for hours by the steps waiting for a chipmunk nose to appear.

This morning I was sitting outside, reading the paper, while Lily guarded the perimeter. Suddenly I heard the unmistakeable CHIRP of the chipmunk and next thing I saw was Lily playing with the fur off the chipmunk's tail!!

Ughh! She was having so much fun hiding the fur in a bed of myrtle and tossing it around like a cat does. I couldn't stand it (and I'll never kiss her again!!) so I put on a work glove and tossed the fur over the fence. Lily wasn't too pleased with that but I just couldn't watch her displaying her killer instincts!

Then I checked google, of course :) and found that when a chipmunk (or squirrel etc) is threatened with capture/death from behind they release their tail. In this case just the fur that covers the tail. Lily was just doing a good job keeping our patio (and home) free from rodents. I do understand that this is her instinct and she's not misbehaving.

I'm hoping that close call persuades the chipmunks to take up residence elsewhere! Otherwise my patio is going to be a battleground over the summer.
Should have named her "Killer"!

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