Squirrel Appreciation Day
‘Oh no! Here come the squirrels!’ If you’ve ever said something like that – perhaps with some naughty variations – we hear you. Most of the time, we’re all for keeping those scurrying scoundrels from pilfering what we’ve put out for our feathered friends. We even wrote a blog about it.
But not on the 21st of January, because that’s Squirrel Appreciation Day!
A one-day squamnesty
This annual event was started in 2001 in North Carolina by Christy Hargrove, a wildlife rehabilitation expert. It’s a chance for us to remember that, actually, squirrels can be pretty neat. They’re amazing acrobats, and they can jump many times the lengths of their bodies. They’re also fantastic at climbing. Anything that can happily stand vertically, head facing down, on the side of a tree trunk is worthy of at least a bit of respect, even if only once a year.
Now that we’ve made the case for squirrels, let’s cover some ways you can mark the occasion.
Watch and enjoy
You don’t need to put on a big ceremony on the 21st of January, although we’re certainly not stopping you. Just keeping an eye out for the telltale (telltail?) twitch of a tail to tell tales about is a great start. If it’s a bit too chilly to venture out, you could use a wildlife camera instead.
Watching the furtive foragers can be entertaining in itself, but if you want some ideas to join in more, we’ve got you covered.
Scouting for squirrels
Witnessing any of the following are worth points. This is a serious game, with the number of points having been decided after arbitrarily assigning them on a whim a huge amount of research.
- I saw a squirrel! 5 points
- I saw more than one squirrel at the same time! 6 points per squirrel
- One or more squirrels did something funny. 10 points/20 points if you have video evidence
- A squirrel stole from the bird feeder. 5 points
- A squirrel tried to steal from the bird feeder and failed. 10 points
Need some help getting 10 points rather than 5? Check out our Eco-Friendly Premium Bird Seed Feeder, with a lid designed to keep clever squirrels out.
- A squirrel stole/tried to steal from the bird feeder, and I have evidence that the attempt was hilarious. 25 points
- I (somehow, if you’re in the UK) saw a flying squirrel! 50 points, because those critters are AWESOME
- I looked for a squirrel, but I didn’t see any. 5 points because the effort deserves a reward
Tot up your points at the end of the day, and post your score online for bragging rights. Remember to tag us!
A famous squirrel competition
We’re proud to announce the results of the first (and probably last) nominees for the SQUIRREL (Slightly Questionably Upstanding Impressive Really Really Excellent Leaper) award. Competition was tough, but we narrowed the list down to three:
- Squirrel Nutkin, the beloved creation of Beatrix Potter
- Scrat from the Ice Age films
- The squirrel girl from the Disney version of The Sword in the Stone
We then decided that Scrat was the best. The decision’s more-or-less final, but if you’re desperate for a different winner then tell us on social media!
We’re actually quite fond of squirrels, even when it’s not the 21st of January. If you share our joy for these rascally rodents, please share your experiences with us! And if you’ve captured some of them – only on camera! – all the better. Show us your pictures and videos on social media to confirm you’re an excellent person with a splendid love of wildlife.
We hope we’ve equipped you with the enthusiasm to enjoy Squirrel Appreciation Day to the full. Now go off and enjoy your garden!