Nurses Plan Counter-Attack Against British Squirrels

According to the Telegraph, nurses who work in rural areas in the U.K. are under assault by squirrels, and are now being instructed to “walk in pairs” to avoid violent confrontations and to “make loud noises” to scare them off. (When has that ever worked?)

“One district nurse was left with “reddening of the scalp” after being attacked.

In her “squirrel attack report” she wrote: “On walking up farm access I was jumped upon by a squirrel. Then another landed on my head.” She rated the “severity of incident” as “insignificant to catastrophic”.

That’s quite a big range, no? Insignificant to catastrophic?

The article ends with an equally puzzling sentence:

“Last year, inventor Mike Madden suffered whiplash after a squirrel leapt on him as he tested a head-mounted bird feeding try in Huddersfield.”

(He put a bird feeder on his head? This is like holding out a bloody steak in your hand and then blaming a dog for biting you.)

Where Have All the Acorns Gone?

I’m a little late in posting this, but the Washington Post asks: What’s up with no acorns this year? Even the squirrels are unhappy:

“The idea seemed too crazy to Rod Simmons, a measured, careful field botanist. Naturalists in Arlington County couldn’t find any acorns. None. No hickory nuts, either. Then he went out to look for himself. He came up with nothing. Nothing crunched underfoot. Nothing hit him on the head.

Then calls started coming in about crazy squirrels. Starving, skinny squirrels eating garbage, inhaling bird feed, greedily demolishing pumpkins. Squirrels boldly scampering into the road. And a lot more calls about squirrel roadkill.”

Read the article to find out just what the heck is going on with the Season of No Acorns!

Squirrel Kebabs Don’t Make for Good Photos (or food?)

As if British food doesn’t already have a bad reputation, a chef in the U.K. had to go along and:

  • create “squirrel kebabs” and put it on the menu
  • pose with a photo of a skinned, headless squirrel carcass in the U.K. Sun in what may be the most unappetizing food photo ever (do not click through unless you are prepared to be disturbed. Or are disturbed).
  • Full story: Chili Sauce With Your Squirrel?

Endangered U.K. Red Squirrels Developing Immunity to Virus?

Finally, a bit of good news for the dwindling red squirrel population in the United Kingdom: They may be making a comeback, thanks to increasing immunity against a deadly squirrel pox virus.

We’ve been covering the red squirrel dilemma for a long time (which has involved slaughtering and eating grey squirrels so as to reduce their invasive population — they are immune to the virus) so any good news is a sight for sore squirrel bloggers’ eyes.

Celebrated British Chef Gamely Prepares Squirrel With Walnuts

As the U.K. continues to grapple with an overpopulation of non-native grey squirrels in the U.K., one celebrity chef has an idea: treat them like game, and throw ’em in the stew pot.

Marco Pierre White, host of the new program Marco’s Great British Feast, traveled to the posh Somerleyton Estate in England to feature “local produce” and game on his show. While grey squirrels are technically not local (being from the U.S. and all) they are quite convenient. So, it’s not surprise they ended up in some of his recipes. From the article Squirrel on the menu:

“The meal – squirrel with walnuts – was cooked in the kitchens at the estate’s award-winning Fritton House hotel where the fruit of the day’s shoot was also made into a squirrel and mushroom pie.”

Says White:

“I was surprised to discover that squirrel is considered a delicacy in certain parts of the UK and quite widely eaten. Having tried it I can see why.

“We tend to be squeamish about eating this small mammal but, when you think about it, it’s no different to eating rabbit.”

Is ‘Squished Squirrel Photo’ Real or Fake?

(Note: This post and linked article is not for the faint-of-heart.)

squirrel squished by highway painters

(Click image to see full article and larger photo.)

I know some of my squirrel readers will not find this story from The Tribune in Colorado the least bit funny, and I don’t blame them. Roadkill is sad and gross. Thousands of U.S. highways are to blame for millions, if not billions, of animal deaths. Who hasn’t killed an animal while driving? (I once accidentally killed a bird.)

Still, there’s still something a little funny in this photo (and yes, disturbing ) of a squirrel that’s allegedly been striped over by a highway striping machine.

If the incident actually occurred, however, is up for debate:

Is Squished Squirrel Real?