Squirrel Tails, Pondering Life on College Campuses DearKidLoveMom.comDear Kid,

We have found a new solution to the age old problem of How to Stop Squirrels from Eating at the Bird Feeder. Our answer? Forget to fill them. Then no one goes near the bird feeders. Sigh.

Since you are now living in a place with college town Kamikaze squirrels, I think it is time to address a question that has bothered me for years: why do some squirrels have bushy tails and others look like they are candidates for squirrel tail toupees?

I turned to my best source of squirrel information: Booker. He gave me A Look that said “haven’t you noticed I’ve given up worrying about squirrels?” It’s true. Whether he’s decided they are ok to have around or whether he’s learned that they climb trees and are therefore not good potential friends, I don’t know. He proceeded to wag his tail, lick his paw, and generally ignore the question.

I turned to my next best source of information, my friend the internet. While there are lots of reasonably reliable sites talking about why squirrels have bushy tails (balance, warmth, and communication device) there are only a few sites that talk about skinny tails and those are clearly opinion or possibly fairy tale based. At best.

Answers I found included heredity (duh), mange (ew), shedding (the Booker syndrome), and eating sunflower seeds. None of which are particularly interesting (except perhaps the sunflower one. Except that there are no sunflowers in the neighborhood.).

I thought about making up writing a story discovering a long lost epic tail called Why Some Squirrels Have Skinny Tales and Other Tails of the Squirrel World. Then I decided a cup of tea sounded like a better idea.

Bottom line: Some squirrels have skinny tails and some squirrels have bushy tails. Sometimes bushy tail squirrels have tails that get skinny and sometimes skinny tail squirrels fluff up. And sometimes they don’t.

Squirrel tail toupees are probably a bad idea unless you want to get paid with an IOU for nuts–if the squirrel can remember where they are buried.

Watch out for squirrels, my Tired One.

Love, Mom