As I peer upward into trees, I have been noticing squirrels. In part this is probably because they are in the midst of a busy season of eating, preparing and storing food and engaging in sex-driven chases. Our street has many black walnut trees, and I hear the squirrels when they drag a nut into a tree and begin loudly gnawing at it. Perhaps the gnawing sound is also communication. I don’t know if they are removing the outer hull before returning to ground to bury the nut. Like some other hoarders, squirrels are supposed to be able to remember where most of their nuts are buried. Small animals can have amazing savant-like cognitive capabilities, but I have to wonder if they also use certain rules-of-paw or even scent to locate buried food later.
This squirrel was hanging out head down, flattened against the tree-trunk in a sunny spot. I suspect it was catching some warm rays of sunshine on a chilly morning.