Friday, May 1, 2009

Belltown Wildlife

Is there such a thing? Sure, Belltown has its share of birds. They're the usual suspects of urban landscapes: pigeons, crows, seagulls, starlings, common sparrows (my favorite) and the occasional robin that has wandered into the wrong neighborhood (this one). I was beginning to think that the only wildlife around here was in the form of mice and rats, but this winter, I began to run into squirrels all over the place. These guys were very used to humans and savvy about traffic. One day, I looked out my window and saw a squirrel in the cedar tree that blocks my light and offends my eye. The presence of that squirrel made me hate the tree just a little less. Unfortunately, the little fellow was just visiting, so I'm back to hating that cedar as much as ever.

I know that there's a small squirrel population across the Belltown border in Denny Park and why not? The trees there are huge. If I was a squirrel, I'd live there. In fact, I go to Denny Park almost every day to feed peanuts to squirrels. That's what you can do when you're unemployed - appreciate squirrels. Sure, to some people they're pests, but I think they're interesting creatures; they can climb like nobody's business and they go mental for peanuts.

I believe that squirrels live in Belltown. I'm pretty sure that there's a family of them living at 3rd & Vine, at the Vine Court. That seems to be a convenient base for them. I'm convinced that all the squirrels I saw this winter weren't simply part of the Denny Park population roaming far afield searching for food. No, I think a bunch of them live at the Vine Court. Here's my proof:

OK, so it's kind of dark and I did take it in February, but that's a squirrel hanging out at 3rd & Vine. I'm currently searching for more evidence and I'll update as necessary. As you can tell, this is a very important topic to me.

Oh, and speaking of animals, I'm off to see the new penguin habitat at the Woodland Park Zoo. Even though it has nothing to do with Belltown, I promise to post photos when I return.

1 comment:

Jim said...

The primary food of the Gray Squirrel (an introduced species like the English Sparrow, Rock Dove, Starling, Norway and Roof Rat) are the Maple samaras that are produced in abundance by the Norway Maple (a common street tree widely planted here in the 1970s) and the native Big Leaf Maple. Squirrels bury more samaras than they can ever hope to eat or even find, guaranteeing that these plants will be breaking up the asphalt for years to come.