Get the play on a popular product?

Squirrels, yes the garden-variety, innumerable, profusion of squirrels. They really are an unappreciated bunch.

Wildlife that pretty much has left the wild is getting harder and harder to find outside of the city trees and well-stocked gardens.

Squirrel-in-WoodsFinding them in the forest is not too different from hunting for more serious and desirable game. Finding them in the city is like going to the zoo. But just like city squirrels, forest squirrels can be enticed with a few tasty nuts. In the middle of the forest, how the heck do they KNOW you have nuts? They seem to appear out of thin air. Have no nuts? No squirrels to be seen. It really is a mystery.

I don’t mind just taking a few shots of forest squirrels. You know… when everything seems to go right. But I know…


these squirrels will never be on a magazine cover of some fancy wildlife magazine. Seeing them just gives me a chance to walk in nature, and ask what other creatures rule their kingdom? Not every trip in nature has a desirable animal to photograph. And sometimes they are there, but the animals are too quick.


My trip to Hawaii is coming up and after my wildlife disappointment in Eastern Europe, I don’t have high hopes for getting photos of animals. In Eastern Europe I did see stork nests, but would rather have seen a stork. The Danube did have heron and swans, but they are here in Western New York. I was hoping for something different. I Googled animals in Maui and marine wildlife looks to be my best bet. Birds will likely be those introduced to the island.


So I guess my nature contribution to this blog will be of the marine variety if luck has it. So my CoverSquirrel photo shoot ends with…

Catchlight in every squirrel eye, well, except for the butt shot. If this really was a fashion spread, a butt shot might just be that winning shot. Just ask a Kardashian.


On Garden Walk Garden Talk, Off to Maui in January.


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24 Responses to CoverSquirrel

  1. Mike Powell says:

    I love your Cover Squirrels–I photographed a few squirrels yesterday when I was out pursuing birds. They deserve more attention! I haven’t tried to lure over any of them, but have instead tried to capture them when they were perched on a branch, enjoying some tasty treat.

    • donna213 says:

      It is funny, but it was birds I was after with the nuts. I really, really did not want the squirrels because the birds are less likely to be photographed nicely if squirrels are in the way. But they need to have their day in the sun so to say. 😀 The squirrels hear the bird chatter and must come from miles around.

  2. When I was out a few weeks ago, the squirrels practically posed for me and I still didn’t get great shots.

    • donna213 says:

      I find it is best when they don’t know you are there, but really, they are so curious and see very movement. I think with the 300mm, you should have some really nice photos.

  3. Denise says:

    Wow, beautiful! The photography as well as the squirrel. This one is very cute. How strange that there is so little wildlife in Eastern Europe.

  4. My Heartsong says:

    I loved this! Great cover photo and had a few laughs as I looked at the coy looks and read the article including the butt shot comments And our dogs would not get the excitement of the chase if it weren’t for squirrels. I enjoy watching them sneak up or follow me as I meander down a path or just surprise me as I walk past a branch and see a squirrel staring me in the face.Also find it interesting to watch them eat snow for water,nuts, berries even if they are pests at the feeders..but that is entertaining too. Great job, Donna!

    • donna213 says:

      Thank you. The squirrels here don’t usually follow me like the birds do. I guess they are too well fed. My dogs used to like chasing them too. One time my Akita caught one though. Was not a happy ending for the squirrel.

  5. You got some absolutely beautiful photos of those (that?) cover squirrel!

  6. This is such a cute and special photo album…Really, really enjoyable.

  7. David says:

    Very nice photographs. I especially like the ones that have some snow in them. Even if it’s just a little bit, it seems to add to the picture.

  8. yalakom says:

    What a nice caramel coat on his face & belly, I don’t think I have seen this color on a squirrel before. Beautiful coat! Where was this taken?

    • donna213 says:

      I never saw that color on them before either. We get some strange squirrels at Niagara Falls. The black and red ones are new to us in recent years. They breed with the gray squirrels and if it is not something they have been eating causing this color, then they are a mix of squirrels of different color.

      • yalakom says:

        Very interesting. Red squirrels are all I could see in BC, but I’m familiar with the grey ones that I observed many times in Central Park, NYC. Yours really looks like one if it wasn’t for that belly color.

        I did some research and my thought is that yours is a Fox squirrel (Sciurus niger). These are the largest squirrels which would also match the size of yours: it looks pretty massive to me! You can have a look here:

        If you google-image it, you’ll find similar coat colors. Very cool. I like them, would love to see one 🙂

  9. Pat says:

    Great group of squirrel shots. It really is fun to watch their amazing acrobatic feats as they scramble through the branches.

  10. Debra says:

    Beautiful images. I agree with yalakom. This does look like a fox squirrel which are super common where I am but kind of rare up in the north east. I was so surprised that you didn’t have much luck spotting wildlife on your recent trip. I used to follow a birder who blogged from Estonia and she always had the most amazing images. Hope you have better luck with the trip coming up.

    • donna213 says:

      No luck with wildlife in E. Europe. Even small common birds were absent. I was wondering if it had to do with use of pesticides in the huge corporate farming communities. No insects either. It was very warm there, shorts could be worn on some days, so insects should have been around and birds feeding on them. Many people were commenting on the lack of birds. Some were avid birders in our group too. Estonia is very north of where we were and I bet she photographed the birds on migration. We visited the family farms in the countryside and still no birds could be seen or heard. Since birds were still migrating here at that time, I really expected to see many. The squirrels in this post are rather small. Fox squirrels are big, no? One of the squirrels I did not picture is really tiny and very red. I too hope I see birds on the next trip. It is a long wait until spring and bird travels. We are very lucky here to have many birds over winter, plus all the ducks and gulls. Snowy owls have been spotted and some rather rare birds are still being seen. I just have not had the time to go birding with the group.

      • Debra says:

        Fox squirrels are only relatively bigger than the others. They are still squirrel sized. You definitely have fox squirrels there. Not just from the colouring but from looking at their faces it seems obvious to me. I was surprised you saw them at all because they are present but rare in your area. The blogger from Estonia had shots year round (and included a great diversity of wildlife) so I don’t think it was purely a migration thing. I don’t know how much of your time was spent outside of cities. I do know that if someone came here to photograph birds they would likely be disappointed but if they drove even an hour or two out of town they would cry with happiness. Most of Europe has far stricter standards for pesticide and herbicide use so maybe there was something else going on there — like the effect of concrete and other forms of impermeable cover typically found in urban areas. shrug. No matter what the cause I am sad you missed out.

        • donna213 says:

          We get some odd squirrels here. I have a photo of one that looks like a flying squirrel. It is really small. The black squirrels are new in the last number of years. They came from Canada. It probably is a fox squirrel and there must be a family of them in the Falls. We were in the country quite a bit on our tour. Plus the Danube is supposed to be filled with birds. We were lucky to even spot a gull. I showed city life because I was very disappointed in country life there. The City of Buffalo has quite a few places to find birds, so even the cities there should have had birds. We visited a number of parks so I really was expecting to see birds there. In Buffalo, a wide range of warblers come right into the city center. Traffic and noise should keep them out, but they love this one cemetery.

  11. Too funny….I love watching our resident squirrel…every morning he climbs down one tall tree, up another and then flies to another and just barely catches the branch upside down…and he comes back that way. He could just easily have scampered across the grass and through the fence…but he has the right idea. Make it fun!

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