I was excited to hang my new bird feeder. I found the perfect place for it. I could see it from the kitchen window or the the patio door. Soon my feathered friends appeared and happily feasted on the seed mix. I had woodpeckers, tufted titmouse, cardinals, chickadees, goldfinch and the occasional Eastern Mountain bluebird. The kids were so intrigued by all the different species that we borrowed a bird book from the library.
Then the squirrels came. At first, it was funny to see how the they jumped from the deck rail to the feeder, or how they hung upside down from the tree managing to get only a few seeds before twisting and plopping to the ground. Soon, however, the squirrels taught themselves how to bat at the feeder to knock the seeds onto the ground, where they could gobble them all up in minutes. One even figured out how to hang upside down, stretch out, pull the feeder up with his tiny paws and stick his nose into the seed tube. Of course all this squirrelly activity frightened the birds. I kept refilling the feeder naively thinking that eventually the squirrels would have their fill. Who was I kidding, even I don't turn down free food when I'm full! This went on for a while until they had eaten the plastic tubing as well and the feeder didn't even hold seeds anymore. Now it was war. I bought a suet feeder. They can't knock the seeds out and the wire cage prevents their pesky little noses from getting in.
It was peaceful again, and the birds returned. I had won! I had outsmarted those little tree rodents.
I woke up the next morning eager to see my birdy neighbors. I looked out the window and all the suet was gone! Maybe the squirrels are smarter than me after all.