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Leave of absence

I haven't seen a squirrel at my bird feeder for a whole week. I usually see one of the four resident squirrels hourly at the feeders. At my home we like to say we feed the squirrels and incidentally the birds get something to eat.

I am not complaining mind you. They are very destructive and annoying. I am lucky if one of those plastic finch feeders make it through a winter. The squirrels chew off the perches and the eat hole through the plastic. I thought I solved the problem by buying a metal mesh finch feeder, but recently I noticed that they chewed a hole through the metal.

Now that they are not around I am going to try hanging out a fragile feeder with nut and berries. Although as soon as I do that, I am sure that they will come back from their mating retreat or whatever they are doing now, and find it before the birds do.

Journey through gardening season with Rosa Salter Rodriguez (feature writer), Anne Gregory (Web editor and writer), Frank Noonan (copy editor) and Cathie Rowand (photographer)