Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Squirrel Hunting A Different Way

I used to be a dedicated squirrel hunter and thought that I would hunt them until I went to my grave. Many a beautiful autumn day was spent afield with .22 rifle in hand, in pursuit of the wily "Grey Ghost" as they are often called, but I have not hunted them or anything else, since 1998 or so, when I became addicted to wildlife photography.

The bad part of this is that although I do photograph squirrels at feeding stations, I have not actually pursued them in a hunting type situation for several years. I had no intentions of doing this today either, but while on another photographic mission, I ran into a concentration of squirrels feeding on hickory nuts and witch hazel.

Prime Squirrel Habitat

Alarmed Squirrel

I quickly pressed my "squirrel rifle" into service and for a time I relived the old days with the exception that the squirrels are still alive to be photographed another day and I do not have the hard work of cleaning a "mess of squirrels".

My Modern Day Squirrel Rifle: Canon 40-D with 500mmF4

A Classic Squirrel Shot

These are not world-class squirrel photographs, as the range was long for such a small animal and I cropped the photographs severely, but it was wonderful to experience a favorite sport from the past, with what is now my "weapon" of choice. "Now if I could just git some good video of them there pesky squirrels"!


imac said...

Way to go Willard.
Grand shots.

Crokus Family said...

I just posted my squirrel today and then you came back with these amazing ones!

Brad Myers said...

I to was a squirrel hunter for years. And it is much easier to download and process a card then to clean a squirrel, plus I really didn't like them so after cleaning I gave them away.

Good post and photos Willard.

HANNIBAL said...

I smiled at your alarmed pose! Very animated! Loved it!

Anonymous said...

They are great photos! I love squirrels! Thank you for only shooting them with your camera.

Tom said...

Iwas allowed to shot these in a local woods bec ause of how they damaged the trees.. in return for shooting squirrles crows and magpies.... I could also shot and work the rabbit holes with ferrets. I resently went to this very woods and it as now been left for so long withour proper care and lot of trees are lost now... not all because of squirrels may I add.
I taed a local squirrel two years ago... and it would tap on my windows to be let in and feed.... it would sit on my knee and take nuts and such like. I think it died early spring this year. I was able to get some great shots of it and did show a few on my blog.