News from the Tennessee Valley Columnists
SUNDAY, JULY 2, 2006


Summertime and the living is easy

It's been a year almost to the day that I reported that our backyard squirrel skipped town and left me in peace.

But the trap door's been open for anytime he came back.

Well, he's back. I know it's him because of his nasty habit of dropping from the maple tree onto the roof of the sunroom.

He's punctual. Somewhere in the vicinity of 6 a.m. when I'm reading the newspaper, he drops, scampers across the roof and does a handspring into the backyard.

On days when he's feeling friskier than a squirrelly squirrel, he scoots back up the massive tree trunk, drops again and does another free fall into the yard.

He did it three times on a recent morning while I watched from inside and my Elmer Fudd, steam-out-the-ears personality took over. Like "wasccawwy wabbit" that tormented Elmer, I take squirrel's antics personal.

He's too squirrelly to get himself caught in the wire cage bought exclusively for him.

The trap's design is simple: Put bait on a treadle that trips a rod that springs the trap.

But Squirrelly skips the important step of tripping the door but still gets the assorted nuts I liberally place on the treadle.

United Exterminating Co.'s Web site says I might get better results using a peanut butter sandwich as bait. Nuts and grain drive squirrels nuts, even squirrelly ones if you chum them pretty well, the site says.

Put peanut butter on a slice of bread; fold it, then tear the sandwich into parts. Use bits of the sandwich as hors d'oeuvres to work up Squirrelly's appetite and to mark a trail to the trap for the main meal.

A year ago, I speculated that Squirrelly married and moved away. Regina, who has the ability to see a glass 110 percent empty, says he simply brought his family back. Those three gymnastic exercises I saw that morning, she says, were performed by a troupe playing follow the leader.

Perhaps, I need to buy two jars of peanut butter. I can always eat the leftover.

Tom Wright Tom Wright
DAILY Executive Editor

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