Nature reserves the right to inflict upon her children the most terrifying jests.
What a day we all had here yesterday. Meet our new little friend: Nibble.
Nibble is a baby squirrel that fell out of the tree yesterday. For real. Here is the story:
I was tending to new emerging potato plants (yes!) when I heard a rustle in the nearby pine tree and then a terrible screech. It was comparable to a wounded puppy. I left my potatoes alone and walked up to the tree to investigate the racket.
I found something I've never seen before. Up at the top of the tree there were two crows attacking a squirrel's nest and there was a baby squirrel hanging from the branch, holding on for dear life. One of the crows swooped down and knocked the baby squirrel right off of the branch and the little thing fell from the top of the tree to the very bottom branch. The crow immediately followed and so did I. I grabbed the baby squirrel before the crow got to him (I think it's a him) and brought it inside the house with me. I've seen a crow eat a baby rabbit before, so I knew what could happen to this little guy if I didn't hide him.
What a little sweetheart.
I've never cared for the baby squirrel so I looked up baby squirrel care on the internet and made him an electrolyte solution to keep him hydrated. He can't drink it directly yet, so I've put the solution in the little shallow bowl and dipped cheesecloth in it to soak up the liquid. When he is thirsty, he sucks on the cheesecloth. It works pretty well, I can hear him swallowing. The cheesecloth is of all natural type so he is not sucking up anything harmful.
When Angelina came home she was both horrified of the story and thrilled to be able to see the baby squirrel up close and hold him. I have to say, I have never seen a baby squirrel in real life either. What a wonderful life lesson.
Nibble was very taken with Angelina and enjoyed being held by her. At one point he really wanted to climb on her leg so we let him. As soon as he accomplished that, he promptly fell asleep.
This morning Nibble is doing great and just few minutes ago he peed on my shirt. I was very happy to see this because that most likely means he is taking in his liquids and is not dehydrated. I'll be leaving in few minutes to get him some milk at the pet store. I've heard puppy replacement formula is good for baby squirrels. He doesn't appear to be wanting solid foods yet as I offered a berry and a banana but without too much luck. I've heard they love pine nuts and avocados, so I'll be trying that later on today.
Based on the fact that his eyes are open, he has teeth and looks like a miniature squirrel, I've estimated his age to be about 8 weeks. That's still pretty young and he has ways to go.
We will try to reunite him with his momma later today. We've tried yesterday but without much luck. If we don't find her, we will raise him and release him back to the yard when he is ready.