Bones and skulls are a good source of calcium and minerals for rodents. A close look at this deer antler reveals their tiny teeth marks.

On my trips through the bush I sometimes pick up these castoffs and remains. I currently had two old coyote skulls on the deck that I intended to add to a big pot of flowers.

But I hadn’t counted on the new neighbour.

This summer a changing of the guard occurred on one of the nearby middens (aka squirrel homes).

The young male squirrel must have assumed our house was part of his territory as he often appeared on the deck. On warm days he’d visit the bird bath for a drink. (Yuck. Bird poo and feathers.)

One day I heard a kafuffle outside. As I glanced out I saw my neighbour making off with one of the coyote skulls. It was slow going. The darn thing was nearly as big as him.

By the time I got outside the skull had landed on the grass and the black eyes that turned my way had a What?-Not-me! look. I retrieved the skull.

The next day when I went to plant the flowers the other skull was missing. I searched the deck, the grass, the gravel. Nope. Gone.

A few days later I visited my neighbour. Yup. There was the skull, perched on the pile of cone scales.

I paced out the distance: 50 metres (more than 50 yards). He’d dragged that skull through grass, across gravel and into a tangle of forest understory.

At that point I decided the flower arrangement didn’t need two skulls. He’d earned his.

10 thoughts on “Thief

  1. Hi Sally ! It is so good to hear from you again !
    I love your squirrel—but I suspect that “he” is really “she”, as the story reminds me of one of my favourite sayings. My motto, actually: Never underestimate the power of a determined woman… You probably have physical evidence for “him”, but I’ll settle for her.
    Here’s hoping that you are doing well, and this post certainly says, yes.

    Sent from Mail for Windows 10


    Liked by 1 person

  2. At a yacht club where I work, someone nailed up a pair of deer antlers on a wooden support for a variety of electrical equipment. Eventually, people started noticing that the antlers were getting shorter, and no one could explain it — until we finally caught the squirrels in the act of running up the platform, lying across the antlers, and gnawing away to their heart’s content.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I often find chewed on bones out in the woods. But a squirrel carrying one as far as yours did… Pretty amazing Sally. Your collection of old bones reminds me of Georgia O’Keefe who I am writing about now. –Curt

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I was amazed. He’s a tough little rodent. Looks like you’re having a wonderful roam around the South West. Great to be on the desert this time of year. (Especially when one’s overnight forecast here is for lots of snow!)


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