But like battles waged over the air, these local wars rarely lead to any actual harm for the participants. Usually there's just a lot of noise and gesturing and puffing up to make oneself look bigger than their opponent.
I have a terrible habit of not taking my camera with me when I go out to the studio to work. I've missed deer, fox and rabbit, and many a grand show put on by posturing birds squabbling over seed. But on this day, back in November, I had my camera ready when two red squirrels quarreled over a feeder stocked with black oilers and peanuts.
My feeders are pretty squirrel proof, so when I am out in the studio I put a half cup of seed in the "squirrel feeder", this old tin-roofed model nailed to an old barn beam. The squirrels know the sound of seed in the feeder and are usually there within a minute or two. On this occasion, however, two showed up in quick succession. A brief battle ensued.
|I'm pretty sure I heard the food bucket.|
|Oh crap, it's occupied.|
|Oops, he saw me.|
|I'll make a quick pass to the other side.|
|Can he see me under here?|
|I'll try the front again. Uh oh....|
|Pow! Bam! Bitch slap!!|
The interloper finally defeated, the king of the feeder can finish his lunch.