Pumpkin Critter Carvings...

This year, JP and I grew "Giant Pumpkins" from a few seeds that a neighbor kindly shared with us! We started them in tiny peat pots, and soon they were ready for the ground. It wasn't long before the vines became an entangled maze of umbrella-like leaves, shading the emerging pumpkins below. After a few months we had some whoppers ~ 3 in total! The smallest of the 3 separated from the vine, rolled off the hill and into the path. So, it was relocated to the backyard where the squirrels tend to frolic. Of course, they saw that big pumpkin and immediately began to nibble! Before long, their little bites and gnaw marks turned into deep pits, and soon they had eaten their way through the meaty wall of that large melon. At first, the hole was small, but with each day it grew and grew until one day, the squirrels could make it through! All along, I assumed they were enjoying the flavors of the pumpkin's juicy flesh, but they were after the seeds! Was it instinct to chew and chew and find the seed prize inside, or was that a pleasant surprise? Perhaps it was a little of both! Although we've been a bit disenchanted by what these squirrels have done to our pretty pumpkin, the critter carving has captured our curiosity and offered much comic relief! I snapped a series of photos to share with all of you. ENJOY and Happy Harvest & Happy Halloween!

~ Johanna


* Peek-A-BOO! This chubby squirrel snagged a juicy pumpkin seed!


* He pokes through the pumpkin's window and checks both ways for a safe exit...


* 1, 2, 3...... Jump!


* Don't drop that seed now!


* And now he sits for a spell to enjoy that tasty treat before the sequence of seed-hunting starts all over again! After Mr. Chubs had enough to eat and vacates the pumpkin premise, a smaller squirrel approaches for a bite....


* This little girl is way more shy..... "Who me?" she asks....


* She bobs back and forth and musters the courage to have a peek...


* OH, the sound of my shutter clicking stops her in her tracks!


* But, she jumps with hesitation, keeping an eye on her back!


* The coast was clear! Entry complete.....


* Mission accomplished - Seed in mouth!


* Eat seed from pumpkin portal....


* Captured in the act, but too cute to scold....

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