Our American visitor

Squashy, Squizz & Patch
Squashy, Squizz & Patch pose on the red cushion

Earlier this month I introduced you all to my crew.  Well, I am delighted to announce that we have a new addition in the form of Squashy, Patch’s cousin, who is freshly arrived from the US of A this morning.  Understandably, Patch is beyond himself with excitement and is chattering away nineteen to the dozen while poor Squashy looks around faintly disoriented at his new surroundings. Poor little fellow is a bit rumpled and squashed from the long journey and I think we ought to leave him be, so he can get over his jet lag.  I’ve no idea how long he’ll be staying but he’s very welcome, although I do hope our monthly nut allowance expands to accommodate having another mouth to feed.  Here’s a pic of him, me and Patch (l-r).

RIP Albie – he was a great squirrel

The village of Dorking is in mourning after the sudden passing of a local celebrity.

I was shocked to hear the recent news about Albie aka Percy aka Snowy’s untimely passing.  The striking albino squirrel was recently killed in a tragic hit and run accident.  Local greys in the Dorking area have credited Albie aka Percy aka Snowy as he was variously known with raising the credibility of non-red squirrels in the area and going a long way to improving their image and standing in the community.  He will be sorely missed.

R.I.P little fellow.  Hope your nut store runneth over in that great tree in the sky.

Meet Da Crew

Squizz, Detty, Heike, Patch, Fluffy, Leo & Chip

Every self-respecting squirrel has a group of friends that forms his entourage, or as I prefer to call them, my crew.  It’s time you all met mine so, after a gruelling photo shoot yesterday, here we are in all our glory.  Good looking bunch of squirrels (and chipmunk), eh?

From l-r, da Crew is as follows: Handsome little old me, Squizzey; then little Detty, our explosions expert, in his Welsh scarf; behind him is Heike, my German mail-order intended bride (although I am strongly resisting the loveless match and remain very happily single).  She’s not really part of my crew.  I think she’s just trying to muscle in on that coconut.  Next to her and valiantly trying to wrest the coconut from her evil grip is Patch, my American buddy.  He’s fab & a whizz at opening coconuts.  His neighbour is Fluffy, the weather squirrel.  If you ever wonder why it’s squirrel grey outside, then that’s all down to Fluff.  Next up is little Leo, the baby of the pack and, I have to admit, he can be a bit of a pawful at times.  Last up is another American and an honorary member of the squirrel entourage, given that he’s really our distant cousin, its Chip.  Nice guy.  Pretty quiet for an American but great at foraging so always handy to have around.

We had a brill wrap party after the shoot as we got to keep the rather lovely large assortment of nuts in the picture: almonds (my fave, yum!), hazelnuts (pretty tasty)  and walnuts (bleurgh – Heike got those).

Happy Halloween!

Happy Halloween Everyone!

Given that I love Autumn as a season, it’s probably no great surprise that Halloween would be a favourite event in the calendar.  Another excuse, as if any self-respecting squirrel needs one, to roast some chestnuts and curl up in front of the glow of a pumpkin lantern and happily chomp away.

I’m planning on dressing up as a vampire squirrel this year and I’m hoping to get my fangs into the sweet white flesh of some virgin… coconut.  Mwuhahah!

This pic of me is an old one, but a goodie nonetheless.  It was taken in 2002 when I was on my American tour – hence the stars-and-stripes jumper I’m wearing.

I wish you all a Happy Halloween and more treats than tricks this year!

The Reds are coming!

Is it a rodent? Is it a superhero?

In my last post, I voiced some concern about some humans’ misplaced love of the red squirrel and how this could have unforeseen consequences and only be a bad thing for us greys.

So, it came as no great surprise when I read the news yesterday that those pesky, but apparently oh-so-cute, red squirrels have made it across the Menai Straits and are now on the Welsh mainland.  This is worrying news for Welsh greys.  We were quite happy for them to have their own little colony on Anglesey where they were no bother to us, but to come onto our turf is well out of order.

Oh, and it gets better.  Word is, that the reds who have made it across are colonising.  Think it might be time for me to whizz up there and put a stop to that kind of nonsense before it gets out of hand. My jet is currently in the shop being pimped so I will have to get up there the old-fashioned way and fly like a superhero – it’s a little nippy at this time of year as the nights draw in and now that the clocks have gone back but needs must. I have to stop the encroachment before it’s too late.

So, if you see any lightning-fast grey objects over Wales in the next five minutes, worry not good people – it is only I, Super-Squirrel, on his way to fight the incursion.

Anti-grey squirrel activity

I nearly spluttered my almond-flavoured coffee over the keyboard this morning when I read the latest news from Wales on the BBC News website.  There is talk of a grey squirrel cull on the Gower early next year, followed by a plan to re-introduce those pesky but apparently oh-so-cute red squirrels in our place some years later.  The ‘conservation’ group behind these plans is heartened by the success of a similar scheme in Ynys Mon (aka the isle of Anglesey in North Wales).

Ground squirrel forces out on manoeuvres

Well, let me tell you this, people of Gower, my troops will be armed and ready and waiting for you if you want to try such a hare-brained scheme.  Be afraid, be very afraid!

Oh, and it gets better.  Some human beaker bods are working on ways to control grey squirrel fertility – yeah, well, good luck with that one!  I am incredibly fertile and I ain’t going to be eating no food (or bait as they stupidly call it) laced with some dodgy immuno-contraceptive.  There’s a reason why me and my crew moved up to chocolate-coated peanuts and shop bought nuts generally.  It’s not only much more convenient, it’s also a damn sight safer to eat!

“Chestnuts roasting in a fan oven…”

Clutching his chestnuts

…doesn’t have quite the same ring to it as Chestnuts roasting on an open fire, does it? But sadly, we don’t have an open fire, and the wench told me she didn’t think roasting chestnuts over candles would really (a) work or (b) be that safe or sensible. She’s such a spoilsport. Ho hum.

Keep the chestnut fires burning

Anyway, despite the fact that they weren’t roasted over a fire like the one in Umbria (see fire piccie), they tasted pretty good for the first chestnuts of the year and at least I didn’t singe my nose foraging. That Umbrian fire was pretty fiercely hot even towards the end of the evening. Ouch! Still, it is our scars and imperfections that make us interesting and memorable to other people.

I love Autumn. Plenty of crispy funky-coloured leaves to scamper through that make a cool rustling sound, an abundance of nuts in the shops (saves precious foraging time and frees me up to do other more important things), lots of (squirrel) grey skies and a slight nip in the air, putting some colour in my cute little cheeks and a sparkle in my devilishly handsome eyes.

Flakes of almond

You know there was a time when I thought that peanuts were my favourite nut of all time but now I have to admit to no longer being sure that this is the case. Of course, there will always be room in my nut dispenser and a special place in my tummy for M&S Belgian Chocolate Coated peanuts but recently a different nut has been climbing the chart of Squizzey’s all-time faves.  My wench, Kaff, recently embarked on a health kick and this seems to involve consuming an inordinate number of nuts. Oh, I’m not complaining. Not much anyway. After all, for once, the cupboards are stocked with nuts, so when I scamper into the kitchen, I can always find something to snack on. This is fab. It would be better if she didn’t eat any and left them all for me  but then I don’t suppose that’s a realistic expectation and I will have to – what do humans call it? Oh yeah – ‘share’ my nuts with her. There are plenty to choose from – walnuts, pine nuts, pecans and almonds. I know! Four different nut varieties. I feel truly blessed at the moment. And my fave? Well, I hate walnuts, so the wench can happily have those all to herself. But I do love me some almonds, especially almond slivers roasted in the oven. They are my absolute fave. Wafer-thin, lightly toasted, hot out of the oven. Mmm. Squirrel ecstasy. And they’re such versatile nuts – super-tasty on wholemeal waffles along with a dollop of natural yoghurt and some blueberries or sprinkled over an asian chicken salad with plum sauce dressing. Oooh! I am salivating just thinking about that and I only just had it at lunchtime. Let’s hear it for the humble almond, people.

Spreading the love and nuts!

squizz reading 1
Squizz reading up on local wildlife

Welcome to my new blog – soon to be all-singing, all-dancing, just like cute little moi!

Who am I? Well, the name’s Squizzey and I am a grey squirrel. Grey squirrels rock & I get really annoyed about the bad press we sometimes (read: almost always) get. I currently live in South Wales, U.K., but have very itchy paws and like travelling to new places.

I’m going to be blogging about anything that tickles my fancy but nuts might feature a fair bit as I’m quite partial to them. I strive to find every nut that crosses my path a good home. That’s just the kind of squirrel I am. Selfless, no?

Apart from nuts, I like reading – as you can see from my pic – so there’ll probably be a few posts about books. Films too. Maybe the odd TV programme as well – and I only like the odd ones! If squirrels are in the news, then you’ll probably find out my thoughts on that here. And generally anything else that I feel like commenting on.

Thanks for visiting and reading and keep on coming back!