It’s very unusual to go for a walk in the coniferous and mixed forests without your presence being heralded by a noisy red squirrel, warning you to keep away from their food cache and young and alerting every other creature within hearing that there is an intruder in their midst.
They are so busy and move about so quickly, that it can be difficult to capture them in a photograph without a long and fast lens, which I don’t currently own, so usually get pictures like the above and like this:
So I was delighted to meet this lovely critter by the Freeman River campground off Highway 32. It’s obvious he was used to being fed by well-meaning campers, but I hope that he was sensible enough to spend most of his time on his main job, which is stocking his larder for the winter.
Although red squirrels are omnivorous – they will eat insects, birds and other small mammals when the opportunity arises, their main food supply consists of seeds extracted from conifer cones. Their scale-carpeted middens on the forest floor are evidence of a nearby cache and a favourite feeding perch.