I am severely disabled and wheelchair bound due to sickness. I am not well enough to keep a pet anymore. I am new to this specially adapted home I live in I innocently started feeding the wild birds and a little male gray squirrel whom I have called Hamish I have a bird feeding station and thoroughly enjoy watching all the different species of birds who now visit every day. It has given me a new lease of life and I have learned a lot about the different species of birds and what kind of food they like. I even scatter some seed for the pigeons who now recognise me and sit up on the back porch peering down into my living room window waiting to be fed It's comical. I had no idea that birds even pigeons can learn to recognise people, especially those who feed them. They get fed in the morning and at lunchtime, the rest of the day they are good at cleaning up all the spilled seeds and pieces of suet from underneath the bird feeding station. I love the cooing noise they make it so relaxing to listen to. I am really worried about feeding Hamish. I didn't know anything about birds or squirrels till now. I am really worried about my neighbour who lives across the back door from my garden His son who lives a good bit away, hates squirrels and works for pest control with his local council, although he is in a very different area, I am terrified he will kill Hamish who I have grown very fond of. I fear also that I have upset his dad who do not like squirrels either although way before I met his son, he helped me erect a little squirrel Feeder on the fence He is a kindly old man Sadly though he has become very seriously ill with cancer, and its now terminal. He is a gentleman. I feel awful because I really like him. But when I met him one day with his son, who I right away felt very uneasy with, and he admitted he utterly hates gray squirrels, and then told me about his job at pest control, I couldn't hide my horror but I still respect him and really like his dad. The other neighbours feed both the birds and the squirrels too. However I fear and sense I may have caused tension without meaning to. I have a soft spot for animals and although I genuinely love animals dearly I am not a person who prefers them to people. Can you kindly offer me some advice on what I should do? I'm torn between my hobby and my attachment to Hamish I will mention that it's definitely a male squirrel and a young one. He has also chased every other squirrel away from my garden. He is fiesty and aggressive and the other squirrels are absolutely terrified of him! I am thinking that is actually a good thing. He visits several times throughout the day and is really only interested in his feeder and scurrying around burying food and eating. I love watching him eating and his cute little antics. There are loads of squirrels in the area as myself and my neighbours have a lot of woodland nearby and that's where Hamish lives. Again, any advice would be much appreciated. Thanks so much for taking time to read my post
"Each kindness shown to birds or men is sure to flutter back again"
Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.
In reply to HAZY:
In reply to Anna B:
Thanks so much for your reply. I had to chuckle at the word "Critters!" which is what I often call them. And first thing in the morning they are all watching and waiting for me to get up and feed them, especially the pigeons. I have grown quite fond of them too. I was initially going to stop feeling the pigeons but they tugged at my heart strings sitting up there on the porch gazing in expectantly! So I eventually gave in! However I try to limit their feeding till early morning and early afternoon to make sure they eat their food. They are very peaceful and happily feed alongside each other. They aren't too fussy and so I keep the less expensive bird seed for them and buy a big tub. They are very smart and know me when I go into the garden and hop around my wheelchair but they panic when anyone else is approaching. Funny thing though, yesterday afternoon I was wearing my tinted glasses so I could see them as part of my illness I can get light sensitivity. They all freaked out when they saw me watching them at my window with my glasses on. Unbelievable! I thought "surely not!" so I took the glasses off to see if I was imagining things - sure enough they all came back and they were quite comfortable with me sitting there watching them pecking away. Amazing!!! I do laugh when they all arrive. I have 4 feeders on the pole. One for peanuts two with mostly sunflower hearts which all the finches and blue tits love! And a huge polomint shaped suet feeder which the starlings go nuts for! It's good because it holds at least 12 suet balls and it's hilarious to see them all clinging on and often one perched in the hole in the middle frantically pecking as it burls round and round. It always makes me laugh. It's good because everything gets fed and it really is "Feeding time at the zoo!!!" first thing in the morning especially. It's a very satisfying and rewarding hobby. And reasonably low maintenance apart from cleaning the feeders, grrrrr but it's worth it.
In reply to Tracy Gilbert :
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