Sunday, March 28, 2010

War Between the Foxes and the Greys

Thirty years ago these little gray squirrels were in Iowa City, with nary a fox squirrel to be found. Fifteen years ago when we came to Cedar Rapids these larger, reddish fox squirrels were all over the big maple tree in our back yard, with nary a grey squirrel to be seen. Things have changed. The greys are moving north. The foxes have been making a stand, with varying degrees of success.

The last month or so, battle lines have been drawn in the big blue spruce in our front yard. The greys are very aggressive, and despite their smaller size they'll go head to head with their bigger adversaries. The fox squirrels are litigious and quarrelsome, chattering noisily at me whenever I step onto the front stoop. I get the impression they're yelling about those upstart greys and demanding to know what I intend to do about it, but that's anthropomorphic — if true. The red fox squirrels seem to be losing the war. I suspect the greys fight dirty. It's the tiny Berettas that give it away. The reds just pass out leaflets and shout slogans.



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