The Squirrel Who Wouldn’t Die

Sometime back, I ran a post on What I Love About Fall. In it I mentioned some of the hunting adventures I have had with my two sons, Clay and Glen. One of these we call the episode of the Squirrel Who Wouldn’t Die.

I should probably issue a disclaimer at this point. This is a true story. Every detail is factual. Animals die violently in this story. If you are one of the PETA types or a tree-hugger, you probably should not read this post. This would be a good time to go work on a placard for your next fur coat protest or something. 😉

Now, on with the story.

As I have frequently stated, I live in the country. One thing we like to do in the country is hunt squirrels. Now if you don’t live in the country, you might think that squirrels are simply little fuzzy creatures whose primary purpose in life is to eat acorns and entertain us with their cuteness and their highway aerobics. In fact, earlier this week the Washington Post ran an article about how cool squirrels were. I just shook my head in amazement when I read it.

You see, country squirrels, (perhaps unlike their city kin) are destructive little rascals. When you plant a garden in the spring, they dig up the seeds and eat them. If any corn stalks happen to develop, they climb the stalks and eat the ears of corn. If you happen to salvage any corn, they then break into the corn crib and steal it.

This time of year, they are wreaking havoc on all of the pecan trees. I have a huge oak tree in my yard with plenty of nice sweet acorns. Do you think they are interested? Not on your life! They would rather eat the pecans. I can’t really blame them for their good taste in nuts, it is just that pecans were intended for human consumption.

I digress.

Last year, my neighbor asked me if I would be so kind as to help him eliminate some of these furry little pests. He didn’t have to ask twice. My sons and I being the outdoorsmen that we are, jumped on this opportunity like a chicken on a junebug. Squirrels are fun to hunt, and they taste good, too. Fry them up and serve them with biscuits and gravy and you have meal that is calculated to make a bulldog slap his mama. This is especially true if the squirrels are fattened up on corn and pecans.

We were down behind Mr. Leon’s (my neighbor) barn, when we spotted a squirrel in the top of a humongous hickory tree. I aimed carefully, fired my 12 gauge shotgun, and watched in satisfaction as the target plummeted about 50 feet and bounced off the ground. I then stared in disbelief as he never even stopped to catch his breath but took off running at top speed under a pile of sheet tin that Mr. Leon had stacked behind his barn.

This is where it gets interesting.

I didn’t want to leave an injured animal in the woods. PETA frowns on that, you understand. So I handed my (unloaded) shotgun to Glen and then asked Clay to look under the tin while I lifted it to see if he could see the squirrel.

I lifted the pile of tin and Clay got down on all fours and peered under it. “I can see his tail,” he said. Before I could warn him about the dangers of grabbing the tail of a live squirrel, he latches on with both hands and proceeds to drag the squirrel out of its hiding place.

At that point, business not only picked up, it spiked the chart. Not only was that squirrel not dead, it wasn’t even really hurt that bad (despite my expert marksmanship). What happened next could best be described as a weedeater with the attitude of an F5 tornado. As Clay stedfastly held onto its tail, that squirrel began to scramble for anything it could find in its effort to escape. My leg happened to be close by, so he tried to climb it first. I then engaged in a series of dance moves that had my Baptist brethren seen it, they would have begun to question my orthodoxy.

After disengaging myself from this buzzsaw, I proceeded to try to dispatch it. I pulled out my hunting knife with the intention of decapitating the squirrel. Have you ever seen a squirrel rear up on its hind legs, raise its front claws and snarl like a bad-tempered grizzly? I have, and friend, it isn’t a pleasant sight (I still have nightmares about it). I finally was able to knock him backward and prepared to finish the job. Now all this time, Clay had a death-grip on that squirrel’s tail. Glen hadn’t been much help as he was laughing so hard he could barely stand up.

As the knife blade neared the squirrel’s throat, that little warrior, with Clay still holding his tail, leaped off the ground, wrapped all four legs around the knife blade and began to gnaw on it with his pecan-shell sharpened teeth.

That was one brave little squirrel. If Custer had had a few like him in his regiment, the Battle of the Little Bighorn might have turned out differently.

We finally were able to finish him off. We took him home, cleaned, cooked and ate him. That was the best tasting squirrel I have ever eaten, but six months later, he still gives me indigestion.


27 responses to “The Squirrel Who Wouldn’t Die

  1. Hey Brother,

    Sorry I haven’t been around much due to my poor health.I have been unwell for 2 weeks or more.

    Just recover today but the haze in Singapore is triggering my asthma attacks.

    Have a good weekend ! God Bless:-)

  2. Brother Godwyn, so sorry to hear you have not been well. I pray that the Lord will grant you a speedy recovery.

  3. Any squuirrel that tough deserved to live. I am surprised you were able to eat it. I must discuss this with the boys.

  4. That is a very, very funny story!! I wanted to laugh out loud (especially when I saw the link you put on the word “orthodoxy”!), but I was afraid the students in the computer lab here would wonder what I was doing, so I just kept it in. But on the inside, I’m laughing really, really hard.

    You’re a fantastic writer, you know that? And don’t let your dad make you feel bad. Any squirrel that fought that hard needed to be killed or he would have told all the other squirrels what a bad shot and poor knife-wielder you were, and they would have been all over the place from then on! 😉

    steve 🙂

  5. I really thought about letting him go, but by the time we got to the knife, it had become a matter of pride.

    Steve, thanks for the compliment. I thought you might get a kick out of the “orthodoxy” link.

  6. LOL, that was so funny I bout fell out of my chair! 🙂

    HEY I haven’t hugged a tree in a long time!

    and no pictures

    my dad would have loved this story!
    he loved to eat squirrel gravy and biscuits!

  7. I may, or may not, have just wet myself! That was hilarious!

    A great leader has the capacity to laugh at himself and/or his antics. Thanks for being transparent, Gordon.


  8. I can’t wait to hear what DK will have to say! 🙂

    I’m just glad I didn’t have a cup of coffee in my hands, keyboards cost to much

  9. Tony, you can’t tell if you wet yourself or not?

    Anyway, that was a great story. I must have a big smile on my face because a coworker just came up and said “Are you having fun?”.

    I said yes.

  10. Bro. Gordon pack up your sling shot and the boys and come over and you will have all the fun they can stand !They not only eat pecans but partake of all the fruit trees that grow in my yard except the citrus fruit! When you go out in back yard they usually run up the pecan tree just out of reach and sit there and laugh at you . LOL. RON.

  11. I’m glad everyone is enjoying this. It was funny when it happened and I still get a kick out of thinking about it.

  12. Tim A. Blankenship

    I loved the story. It was really hilarious.
    It is a lot of fun hunting squirrel.
    I do not know how anyone can eat them, though, after shooting them with a shotgun, especially a twelve guage.
    I have always used a 22 rifle. Shoot them in the head, and all the rest is good.

  13. Thank you for that wonderfully funny story. I like squirrels, but I live in a New York City apartment house, and have nothing for them to steal or damage, so i find them very entertaining.

  14. Oh my goodness! I’m laughing my self silly..quietly..I’m at work. 🙂
    I’ll certianly be telling this story to my husband who had a Southern boys toatal disdain for those critters…hmmmm …maybe he would get out his shotgun and get rid of some of the ones stealing my bulbs and bird seed in the back yard…
    Reminds me of the Squirrel Who Went to Church…lol

  15. TA, the shotgun has a tenderizing effect on the meat.

    Maddy, glad you enjoyed the story.

    JG, this squirrel was way to mean to be the one that went to church. 🙂

  16. i read this earlier this morning and had to come back to comment..i am still laughing…great story..

    squirrel and rabbit are the best critters to eat…especially with gravy and biscuits…yummmmm


  17. I love the story. Thanks for sharing!

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  19. I realize I’m chiming in pretty late here, but this is hysterical!! The funniest thing I’ve read in a while.

    Thanks for the laugh. The “orthodoxy” link to Steve’s post made it all the better!

    Thanks for the entertainment. This is my first time to read your blog and now I’m hooked!


  20. Glad you enjoyed it, Trish, and welcome aboard!

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  23. The shotgun might tenderize the meat, but the pellets are still hard on the dentures. LOL

    I really enjoyed that squirrel hunting story, thanks for making my day Gordon. On an another note, Steve Sensenig is almost as funny as you are, that was great. Email me if you have any more squirrel stories and I will link to them.

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  27. That was a good story it reminded me of a story of my own. Two seasons ago I was squirrel hunting on my family’s land. I heard a squirrel barking and I slowly started my stalk down to the bottom of the holler. I guess I got about thirty or so yards away when it finally ran to the top of a big hickory tree and out on a limb so I took careful aim squeezed the trigger the squirrel fell out hit the ground. I guess I should have not just assumed that I had killed him like I had done so many times before because he scrambled around and went in a hole at the bottom of the tree. So at first I just went over and sit in front of the hole. After ten or fifteen minutes I got impatient and walked over to the hole so i’m standing there looking around when the squirrel runs out acros my feet and i’m now running in place and dancing like a little girl. The squirrel runs off and into a pile of old shingles and lumber and I start slowly sifting through the shingles. Then it bursts out of there before I can even get my gun up.

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