Peach Squirrels

We thought 2007 was a huge year for peaches when we had several hundred of them ... but in 2008, there were way more than that - unbelieveable! Yes, we should have pruned the peach tree more, but I'd never seen anything like this in 10 years. In 2007, the birds and wasps ate a lot of peaches. For 2008, it was pesky peach squirrel who came by several times a day and gorged himself - also knocking off other peaches. Too bad a Coyote or Red Tailed Hawk didn't come by and eat him! Pictures taken with a Canon 40D DSLR using a Canon 55-250IS telephoto lens while I'm on top of an eight foot ladder. ;-)

Mr. Squirrel looks up in the middle of a peach dinner for the camera - closeup

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And then goes back to chomping on the peach - closeup

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The enormous crop has bent/broken the peach tree - note wood props and CU Ralphie

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Mr. Squirrel pokes out from behind one of the broken branches

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And then scampers out to a peach on an outlying branch

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The squirrel takes a breather while eating a tasty peach for dinner!

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Perhaps the Squirrel is saying Grace - giving thanks for the wonderful peaches! ;-)

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OK - time to scamper back down the peach tree

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The squirrel jumpes to a nearby fence post and heads home

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The peach birds came back, but didn't eat as many this year

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The peach wasps were very aggressive last year - lot less of them this year

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There are still a LOT of peaches for us to eat, although they aren't as big this year

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Peeled & sliced peaches in the freezer - others in the fridge for eating the next few weeks

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Another way to use 'em up is to make some yummy peach ice cream!

While we ended up with a lot of peaches (the picture above is less than half), I had to toss over a hundred pounds of them because the squirrel had eaten and/or knocked 'em off so early that they would not even ripen off the tree. Plus there were many damaged peaches from falling on the rocks that we had to cut around the bad parts. Yelling and tossing rocks at Mr. Squirrel did not seem to deter his several times/day visits. I can only imagine how truly annoying this would have been if it was a 100 years ago and my family depended on the peach harvest for food to get us through the Winter months.
I.e. I'll have to do "something" next year to deter Mr. Squirrel!