Wildlife in our gardens




We have a dog door. This is what our cat had brought in and was playing with.

Both of them…

The little one was dead. The larger one my husband took to the woods and turned loose.


Don’t know if it is legal there but you can skin those and tan the skin in alum and water. Then glue it on a piece of barn wood and hang on the wall if you like that kind of thing.


It’s prob OK to skin it, but my bil chopped its head off and threw it in the creek. I told him some folks eat the meat, said it’s pretty good. But, I haven’t tried any.


Looks like a shrew


Monarch on our Mexican sunflower. The colors on the flower are so vivid that it makes the butterfly look washed out. I’m thinking it might have been an older one. Picked up some seeds from Butchart Gardens on a stop in BC on the way back from Alaska…it keeps coming back every year and the monarchs seem to love it.


Snapped this picture yesterday. This is one of the largest giant swallow tails I’ve ever seen. It hung around this flower for about 15 minutes. Couldn’t believe how close I was able to get.


Wow, how gorgeous!


I think this thread was aimed more at admiring and enjoying wildlife in our gardens, so I hope you’ll forgive me. But I put something similar here before and people seemed to enjoy it.

ANYWAY, the wildlife in my orchard today was a squirrel, and like many of you, I’m completely FED UP with these little thieves. So, in the ultimate act of revenge, I decided that instead of providing his dinner, I’d let him provide me mine! ha.

I made him into the best stew EVER. Almost every single thing in the stew (exceptions noted) was grown by me in my garden, and its an extensive list. Most were from my freezer but several were actually picked today. This stew contained : Tomatoes, Green peppers, Onions, corn, regular green beans, Chinese Long beans, turnip greens, dried Pinto beans (not mine), white potato, sweet potatoes, garlic (not mine), yellow squash, celery (not mine), carrots, and some peas and a nice squirrel. Yes, its a ridiculous number of ingredients but I was just going through my garden and then freezer and throwing it all in! And it works! ha.

I also added a little red wine and apple cider vinegar (small amount, but I think it adds a lot of body) and even a tiny bit of sugar (I know that doesn’t sound good but it adds a lot to me). Spices were an Italian blend (Basil, Oregano, Rosemary, Thyme) along with salt and pepper. The real flavor comes from the veggies, and its great.

If you’ve never cooked with squirrel, you really should try it! I know many people see it as a glorified rat, but lots of people have hunted and eaten squirrels as long as they’ve existed and they truly are delicious if properly prepared. Google "squirrel recipes and you’ll find thousands of them. Putting them in a crock pot is by far the best way IMHO.

The first photo shows the stew veggies and the meat (complete with bullet hole! ha) right before I turned the crock pot on. The second photo shows what it all looks like 8 hours later. All I did was stir it a few times…the meat honestly does just fall off the bone. So at the end I just picked out the big bones and dipped out a bowl of goodness. Try it…a great way to thin out your pest population AND making good use of this natural resource at the same time. But most of all, its just WONDERFUL FOOD. This stew and some crusty bread on a cold winter day will have you feeling different about those pesky squirrels! :chipmunk: :smirk:

Before the cooking starts- raw ingredients:

After 8 hours in the slow cooker, ready to eat with some crusty bread. mmmm. Get over those food prejudices…squirrel may be the other other white meat! :slight_smile:

Rabbits cut down my blackberries - Are they doomed? Should I replant?

Señor Gato says, “hmmm, I must try that some day”…


I gotta go to bed…


If I could give this 4 likes I would!!!



[quote=“Richard, post:217, topic:8915”]
As many of you know I’m not a fan of hummingbird feeders. Here’s another notch in my stick:
[/quote]Just curious Richard, whats your reasons for not liking them?



Mrs. Sharp-shinned Hawk in the Brazilian pepper tree behind our house this afternoon. :slight_smile:


Maybe my favorite photo I’ve taken. Quite possibly…

Saw this coyote in 2015 here.



Somehow I am just seeing your incredible photo of that Hawk (??) in flight. WOW! That is one of the best photos I’ve seen here or anywhere of a bird in flight. It looks so majestic. Looks like it’s just about to swoop down on some unsuspecting prey. And trust me, as a free-range chicken owner who looses a LOT of chickens every year to birds like this, it isn’t easy for me to compliment a photo of my mortal enemy. ha. But a good pic is a good pic. I know in the past you’ve said your wife is a great photographer, so I bet she took this? Anyway, great pic. Thanks for sharing

@Barkslip This post of mine has really tested me. First I had to compliment a hawk and now I have to tell you how awesome your photo of a Coyote is. Hawks kill my chickens and coyotes destroyed all my watermelons (believe it or not, it is true) and harass my goats and chickens, so they are my arch enemies But I do love your coyote photo. I also think I appreciate it more than most people will. As someone who has been trying to get a good shot at one (and I don’t mean with a camera!) for years, I know how “Wiley” they are and how hard it is to get a clear view as close as you must have been. So really, I love that pic and appreciate how rare it is. Great job and thanks for sharing it, too.


Thank you so much. As anyone would think, it was magical.



I am a bit curious…were you just out in the field/woods or were you on your back porch or something? Did you see him and ran and got a camera or were you out there taking photos and he came by? Surely this is too good to be a cell phone photo, but I guess its possible? Give us at least a little backstory on this incredible photo!


I came in my kitchen one morning to get my day started and there he was in my backyard. He strolled around all over my yard as I did run and grab my camera to photograph him thru the window.