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Archive for August 25th, 2010

Chipmunks Discover Agriculture

Chipmunk atop sunflower

Chipmunk atop sunflower

One of the sunflowers in the garden started swaying wildly, despite having no breeze at all. I though it was a goldfinch plucking seeds, but a quick look through the binoculars showed a brown furry tail hanging below the topmost seed head, about five feet off the ground.

Mary reports that this is one of five sunflower plants growing in a tight group near the garden fence; she thinks a chipmunk’s seed stash sprouted. This could be the start of something big: next thing you know, they’ll be planting seeds and harvesting crops!

As we watched, the critter’s cheeks became more and more distended.

Chipmunk stuffing cheek pouches

Chipmunk stuffing cheek pouches

Eventually, however, gluttony overcame common sense.

Getting the last seed

Getting the last seed

Seconds after the shutter clicked, the sunflower head disintegrated, depositing the chipmunk on the ground with a rustle and a soft plop.

No damage done, we’re sure, and that critter’s pantry should be stuffed full in short order. Next year Mary will probably do some extensive sunflower culling to get room for the rest of her crops!

And, yes, the title is a riff on Bears Discover Fire

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