Zooming in on terror


I am scared of squirrels.   Irrational I know and I'm annoyed at myself for being afraid of such a cute looking little thing. 
I'd never seen a "real" squirrel until my first day here and when I saw them I raved over their sweet little faces and bushy twitching tails. 

My second day here I met a kamikaze squirrel.  Instead of running away from me it ran straight at me and stamping feet and noise did not deter it.    It only stopped when I ran away and then, looking over my shoulder,  I swear I saw it smile. 

This fear is especially pathetic as I come from the land of more than a few of the world's top 10 deadliest snakes, the small Funnel Web Spider and the Blue Ringed Octopus. I have a healthy respect for these but am not particularly terrified of them.

But squirrels…  I give way to even if it means walking onto the roadway; I give wide berth to trees where I spot a squirrel and I never stand still in a park!

We don't have any squirrels in our little yard;  I suspect because of all the pepper (chili) plants we have around but yesterday I noticed a neighbour is actively encouraging them ….   I would never be able to leave the house if this was at my front door!

This little girl was having a feast.  Of course this was taken from well back on the sidewalk! 

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58 responses

  1. What a sook, Emjay. And you a country girl, too. Although I must confess to a moment of terror when confronted by a squirrel for the first time at West Bromwich cemetery in London, while visiting Richard Tauber's grave. I was lucky I had Mrs Snowy there to protect me with her fearsome handbag weapon..Nice shots, anyway. Did you gradually pluck up enough courage to get closer, or did you take the coward's way out by zooming?

  2. LOL Snowy – I am a huge sook! There was no courage – all photos were taken with the little zoom. And, I will suggest to the manservant that he should invest in a handbag weapon like Mrs Snowy! ……..

  3. The squirrel is really cute, however, if I focus on the pumpkin face the photo can seem a little morbid 🙂 The house I grew up in was next to pecan orchard and there were four large oak trees in the front yard. Pecans and acorns were everywhere in the fall…an all day buffet for squirrels. I never had a kamikaze squirrel charge me, so they're still in the "cute category" for me.

  4. Ha, this is really cute! But I don't mean to say that your fear for these furry little neighbors should just be written off. I have the same irrational fear for cock roaches. I run when I see one and I get shaky for a couple of hours afterwards. I got a couple of those flying AT me. So I know, fear is fear.

  5. OMGosh….I squealed and LOLed at the description of the squirrel smiling. I apologize that your were subjected to such aggression. They don't normally behave so aggressively.

  6. Love the squirrel photos and the story (I'm freaked out by fish of all things, but will still go to aquariums – lucky that they can't chase me out of water like a squirrel!).

  7. It does look like the squirrel is having a field day! And the pumpkin seems to be crying out of terror. I've heard about these aggressive squirrels but none has come at me, maybe because I tend to run after them. (Maybe that's a strategy?)

  8. they are like fancy rats I have had wild chipmunks climb up me and go into my pockets for peanuts I would make fun of you but they are persistent pests and can be intimidating where as most of the snakes and dangerous animals in Australia tend to follow the rule you leave me alone I leave you alone! Where as a squirrel you have no idea what is going on in there little brain but the twitching is a good giveaway on them!

  9. Ha ha, I guess you would not have been very happy to have been in Boston Public Gardens with us a few years ago – the squirrels (great obese things they were too) were practically climbing onto our laps trying to get our sandwiches.

  10. When the pest control man came to remove a grey squirrel that had got stuck in the radiator cover he wore a glove that would have been adequate protection for wrestling angry lions. When I questionned him, he informed me that squirrels might look cute but they're aggressive little buggers who can (and if threatened will) bite down to the bone, leaving you in need of stitches and a tetanus jab. So maybe your fear isn't quite so irrational after all!

  11. I know what you mean by deep seeded fears. I have a fear of high places. We went to see the Grand Canyon, a very long drive from California. I got out of the car went to the look-out stayed far away from the edge..took one look and got back into the car….I was done. Ha, and think of all the photos I could have taken. lol

  12. Do you have the same fears about red squirrels? They are smaller, shyer and cuter, I think. But then, you might be totally right about them. Here, we say "the devil is a squirrel", meaning, evil comes in the least expected guise.

  13. We have squirrels in our yard and our dog Snickers loves to chase them. Bill found a deceased one in the back yard…we're thinking Snickers may have had something to do with that. I've never been afraid of them, but they've never acted aggressive either. Great photo of the pumpkin & squirrel…kinda made me feel sorry for the old guy! 😉

  14. Ha! This is awesome. Good for you for conquering your fear. I'm afraid of certain bugs, and people make fun of me because I'm afraid of butterfiles. Not good for a biologist! But some of the coolest wildife folk I've met have fears. Steve Irwin was deathly afraid of parrots.
    Phobias aren't rational, so people can fear all kinds of things and it's perfectly normal. Fears of animals goes back to our primitive brain.

  15. The trouble with some animals is you don't know what they are going to do. Squirrels are creepy when they keep coming at you. Moths are terrifying because the will blunder into you and not go away. Roaches are scary because they move so fast you can't kill them. Now I feel like I need a shower. I can feel something crawling on me.

  16. LOL … yes, fear is fear and it usually is a little irrational. Cockroaches don't scare me but they gross me out – knowing that for every one you see there are probably 100 hidden.

  17. Well, I am very glad that they don't seem to want to sit on our deck! They do get into the Japanese Maple in the front yard but that is far enough from the path for me to skiddle past.

  18. LOL – if a chipmunk or any sort of furry creature climbed up me I would be really panicking! Yes I prefer wild animals that follow those rules of ignoring me if I ignore them.

  19. climbing onto our laps trying to get our sandwiches.
    Oh – that would've totally ruined the visit for me!! I'm not keen on birds surrounding me when I'm eating out either but they tend to frighten away easier.

  20. LOL – it's ok to find it funny Magnifika. I laugh at myself about it too. I think the squirrel brought her family over to dine as the pumpkin is further demolished tonight.

  21. LOL – United we stand against the evil munching squirrel-machine! Next year try planting chili pepper plants around the tomatoes – I really believe that this kept squirrels out of our veggies & herbs this year.

  22. Oh – you poor thing! All those photo opportunities you missed! We took my son and one of his teenage friends to the Grand Canyon – the friend preferred to stay in the car and listen to his walkman! I don't think he had a fear; I think he was just disinterested.

  23. Friends of ours have a huge tree in their yard and squirrels hang down from the branches teasing the dog which runs itself ragged barking and dancing around under the tree!

  24. Well, I have to admit being surprised you are afraid of butterflies – especially given your love of the chimney swifts. I'm sure everyone has a secret fear of some creature – something that they feel a little embarrassed about admitting to.

  25. I can feel something crawling on me. LOL – isn't it amazing how that happens! A bat flying around in an enclosed space is pretty freaky too. We occasionally got bats in the house when I was growing up and it panicked people to think of one getting caught up in your hair. Poor things flying blindly around and people hysterically flapping their hands around their heads!

  26. We did have some chilli pepper plants, and peppers with squirrel-teeth marks on them! A really enjoyed telling me that the squirrels were enjoying a 'salsa' made from our tomatoes, chillies and herbs! 🙂 I'm glad your veggies stayed safe, though.

  27. Well …. I was told that having a ladybug land on you was good luck – perhaps if you think of them as lucky omens it will help. One of my other vox neighbours is afraid of ladybugs also.

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