How About S’more Squirrels

Thanks to Ron pulling triple watch duty, Linda and I were able to take a quick trip down to St. Louis for a long weekend. This was supposed to be the return leg of our Dauphin Island migration birding trip before that was canceled. The break allowed us to come down for a memorial service for one of Linda’s relatives who passed away last year. Linda’s relatives are scattered from end to end across the states and they wanted to get everyone together as a memorial/reunion in her honor. They had a really nice memorial for her – although it came with a bit more emotion given our current situation. It was great to see the extended families and get caught up on the various happenings. Sorry Facebook, there is no substitute for real social interaction. Second of our events this weekend is Raven’s running at the Poodle Agility Nationals down here at Purina Farms. Raven will be up against the best Poodles here and abroad (at least those that can and are willing to travel out of their countries). The following day I have an appointment with a surgeon to go over some options. One packed longish weekend for sure – again, big thanks to Ron for putting in the extra time.

Unfortunately, this has also made me extremely exhausted as I didn’t get much sleep in the days leading up to the travel down. I still wanted (needed) to get a post out so let me introduce you to tonight’s featured furry friend

Black Squirrel found at Noccalula Falls State Park, Gadsden AL in August 2021

Hit the jump to see more of this cute Black S’more Lovin’ Squirrel.

If you have been following the April posts, you probably are not surprised that I am once again featuring a member of the Squirrel family. This particular creature happens to be positioned at number 3 on my favorite Squirrels list. That’s right, one above the Greys that were featured in the previous post.

Black Squirrel found at Noccalula Falls State Park, Gadsden AL in August 2021

Now, some would say my list is a bit biased as the top three on the list are actually Squirrel members that we do not have in the Heartland where we live. Perhaps I am just bored with the local specimens and prefer the rare encounters with the other species . I can see how that may hold true, but in this case (as well as the first two on the list) these are just plain cuter in my opinion.

Black Squirrel found at Noccalula Falls State Park, Gadsden AL in August 2021

I also think these Black Squirrels and their kin higher on the list (yes, I’m being intentionally vague on the list) seem to have a lot more spunk and far more expressive.  The Easterns will basically come running through the woods, stop for a brief bit, flash you the peace sign and ask you how it’s hanging before playing an extremely aggressive game of follow the leader Parkour style with a potential mate.  They do have to have incredible cardio just to get close enough to ask one to go to the movies. 

Black Squirrel found at Noccalula Falls State Park, Gadsden AL in August 2021

These Blacks are far more laid back and as long as you don’t move to fast and startle them, they’ll go about their business simply looking up every once in a while to make sure you do not have fangs or a set of razors extending out from a body of feathers. Pass that scrutiny and you can continue to photograph them at your heart’s content.

Black Squirrel found at Noccalula Falls State Park, Gadsden AL in August 2021

This particular specimen was found at Noccalula Falls State Park in Gadsden Alabama. Yes, that is the very same place where last post’s Grey was found hanging from the roofing shingle. In case you were wondering, the black variety do overlap with other family member regions. In case you missed it, friend of the blog Brad M. solved a mystery for me in his comment on the Eastern post. We do have an example of that locally as both the Grey and (recently learned) Fox Squirrel like to chase tail in our backyard. Note, with the recent species education I have not had the time to go back and reassess my favorite’s list to see where the Fox will fall. Definitely not in the top 3, but there is a possibility it can knock the Grey down a notch. Pssssst Greys, I can be bribed if you want to pool your pocket change and drop an Amazon gift card at my backdoor … just putting that out there.

Black Squirrel found at Noccalula Falls State Park, Gadsden AL in August 2021

Sorry, digressed there a bit, let’s get back to Mr. or Ms. Black – honestly, no clue if there as easy way to tell the sexes without risking a “Me Too” moment although this one did have nuts…budda bing – here all week folks.

Black Squirrel found at Noccalula Falls State Park, Gadsden AL in August 2021

I have to thank this particular specimen from keeping me going home empty tinned. I ran into several of them in the campground and opted to pass on taking shots. As a golden rule I try not to point my camera in the direction of people’s houses whether they are stationary or on wheels. Honestly, in this day and age I do not want to make anyone unnecessarily nervous or concerned. People are already on edge thanks to our sensationalist and divisive lamestream media, pointing large glass is just going to add additional sparks to the mix. Grit the teeth at the missed opportunity and move on.

Black Squirrel found at Noccalula Falls State Park, Gadsden AL in August 2021

Probably ground down some enamel at that campground as encounter after encounter consisted of the cutest Black Squirrel sitting on a picnic table in the middle of a campsite covered in white goo. Pity the fool camper that forgot to put away the S’more ingredients from the night before. Wake up, yawn, stretch, open the RV door or unzip the tent to a sugar drunk Squirrel covered in marshmallow asking for a wet wipe. Again, I’d have hilarious proof of this but for the golden rule.

Black Squirrel found at Noccalula Falls State Park, Gadsden AL in August 2021

Luckily, we spotted this specimen as we were leaving the campground. It is likely the previous occupants had packed up and left in haste after seeing the white frothing Squirrel outside their tent. This meant I was free to stop and get some shots. Hopped up on chocolate and marshmallows, this specimen was hamming it up for the camera – even gave us an SNL flex “Hans here, I want to pump you up”

Black Squirrel found at Noccalula Falls State Park, Gadsden AL in August 2021

At the end of my shots, better wrap this thing up. Raven starts his runs early in the morning and he wants his cheering squad there to get him motivated. Hope you enjoyed a look at my 3rd favorite Squirrel.

19 thoughts on “How About S’more Squirrels”

    1. Glad I could introduce you to an new creature Hinoeuma! I can admit they are far cuter in person that I would able to capture in the images, so definitely seek one out if you happen to be close to where they hang out. Appreciate you dropping in and have a great rest of the week.

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        1. Welcome Vic! Thanks for letting me know, I actually went to your site to see if there was a preferred name and didn’t see it so went with the other. We mainly have the Grey’s where we live as well – with a few Fox Squirrels thrown in for a bit of variety. Always a special treat when we get to see one on our vacations. Have a wonderful weekend Vic.

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  1. You are so good with words, that one did have nuts, so funny. I love the shot with the tail over its head, like an antenna. You do have a lot on your plate right now and surgery coming up for you it sounds like. You will be needing that trip to Dauphin when all gets back to a slower pace for you.

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    1. What can I say, I call it like I see it ha! I am definitely having to push through the days as of late. We’ll see what the surgeon says tomorrow. A bit concerned now as they moved my appointment back so the doctor would have more time to talk about my situation … my initial take is that can’t be good, but will try to remain optimistic in spite of the fact everything is trending on the bad side of the coin as of late. Unfortunately, long runs have always been my coping mechanism and those have mostly been preempted, so no good outlet. Everything passes and we will definitely be heading out for some R&R when it does. Thanks for dropping by Sandra and keep your posts coming, they give me a good distraction.

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  2. You are really getting squirrely on us. Those look like the black squirrels that would beg for food in the parks in Madrid, Spain. Those squirrels would be all over us trying to take what ever food we had.

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    1. I know, the place it’s going nuts around here! I suspect they are definitely related to the Spain variety although I did here those like to don masks and slice ‘Z’s in trees with their rapiers. Did you ever try to give them S’mores…that would have kept them busy for hours trying to get the mallow out of their fur! As always, appreciate you coming by Timothy – you’ve probably noticed I’ve been lagging on your post reads, but I do try to catch up as soon as I get time.

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  3. At first I thought all of your shots were underexposed. But then I realized which end of the squirrel color spectrum I was looking at. I have not personally seen the one near our neighborhood, but have heard several stories. Also still waiting to see the opposite end of the spectrum animals.
    Very funny stories Brian. Glad you can keep your sense of humor during these very trying times for your family.

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    1. As they say, one out of exposure shot is a mistake, but a tin full is a “style” hehehe. I will stay these were a little touchy to process. Needed to get some of the detail to come through without distorting their natural colors and the bright sunlight was keeping me pinned in on the shadow sliders. I did process them against out print settings which run a little brighter to compensate for the darker ink hues, so if you were to see them on our hallway photo-rail they would actually be a bit darker. All in all pretty happy with the results. Humor is one of my remaining stress reliefs, so thankfully that hasn’t left me yet – not tome mention I get a bit slap-happy without sleep so who knows what weird things I’ll come up with as the week goes on. I did get a chance to do a few hours birding while down here in St. Louis and managed to add 6 more birds to this year’s “Average Year”. Take care Brad, and once this comes to conclusion maybe we can do a little birding together.

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      1. I would like that Brian. I have that new large glass that needs some exercise. However, I never intend to have a Big Year, or even approach one. My goals are more like an XXS (extra extra small) Year.
        It also seems like your photo processing of the black squirrels is akin to the photographer that took a famous photo for our former employer of a solitary bright yellow tractor in the middle of a field of jet black coal. Expose for the tractor/squirrel and fix the rest.
        Keep the humor coming. I suspect you will need double doses in the coming days/weeks/months. Just remember, retirement makes things more bearable.
        Just a phone call/text . . .

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        1. Had to look it up and remember who my former employer was hehehe. I’m thinking you could do at least a S sized year with just the local birds in the area. Ron and I regularly tally up over 50 just in the local state parks and prior to Dauphin trip an outing over here at Weldon Springs was the highest single day species count at 57. Throw in some catches on the trips you have planned, easily in the 100 range. I am currently sitting around 210, but I’m in a stall at the moment.

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  4. Interesting… there are “dark morph” squirrels, just as there are dark morph hawks. I’ll have to keep my eyes peeled for them if and when in the southeastern states. Get some rest, and know you’re surrounded by friends.

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    1. Thank you Sam, so appreciative of the support we’ve been getting from my blogger family. Never occurred to me relating the different morphs in birds with squirrels, but you are absolutely right. These creatures have the morph all the way along the black and white scale with some rufous thrown in like an old sepa shot. Definitely keep you eyes out for these black specimens, they are adorable. Nice of you to drop in and have a great rest of your week. Did you manage to get that Limpkin in the tin? (if you posted already, my apologies, running a bit behind)

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  5. Loved this!!!! Being of the “Grey” family…I think you should expect that gift card anytime now!😂🤣
    Those guys are opportunistic! Free s’mores, why not!!! 😂🤣 Best of luck to Raven in St Louis. Saw it was hot there over the weekend when I video chatted with my oldest. Safe travels.

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