Today in the Valley of the Squirrels I fed a whole herd of them - seven to be exact. There are 3 families that come together for the evening ritual feeding of corn and sunflower seeds and when one of them gets an odd raisin here and there a squirrel squabble almost always ensues. They scamper among the food still managing to stay segregated as they feed together. There are 2 big boss squirrels that no one else bothers while they pick at any of the little ones who venture into their personal space.
All of a sudden the whole herd runs screaming and chattering to the trees. They were still scolding as I wondered what in the world was going on because I have never seen them act that way. I looked over to see a predator in our midst. A neighborhood housecat - well fed from the looks of him - strode into the watering hole like a lion into a herd of antelope on an african savannah. I have only seen him once before a long, long time ago. He got a drink from the fountain and then came over and started wallering all over my feet and legs.
A friendly fellow who could care less that he had thrown the Valley of the Squirrels into chaos that ended the daily feeding much too early.