Even I don't always agree with my opinion


Chick-A-Dee In The Chimney

Posted August 25, 2017 by jim young in Other

Chick-A-Dee In The Chimney

”The supreme art of war is to subdue the enemy without fighting.” – Sun Tzu

Over the past few years, the red squirrel in my backyard and I have enjoyed a very fragile but peaceful coexistence.

But it wasn’t always that way.

I remember it well.

It was a time of turbulence. It was the summer of 2014.

We were at peace. Mostly. There was free trade amongst the foxes, the chipmunks, the birds and their various tribes as well as the rest of the wildlife nations.

We provided humanitarian aid to those in need whenever we could.

But there were 2 exceptions.

Lines were crossed, sides were drawn and My Shirley and I found ourselves forced to consider the very real possibility that we might have to be prepared to take more aggressive action against the red squirrel than we were really comfortable with.

Megarhyssa macrurus, better known as “Stump Stabbers”.

But drastic times call for drastic measures.

Pileated Woodpecker at work.

We were already losing a battle on the Northern Front with a rogue tribe of birds, the dreaded pileated woodpecker who had allied themselves with the stump stabbers.

Damage caused by the Pileated Woodpecker.

To the south and under the cover of darkness, the red squirrel invaded our territory and chose to squat illegally in the province of “Attic”. We could hear the scratching and clawing of the squatters between the ceiling and roof. Having been caught with our guard down, we set out in vain to attempt to determine the section of undefended border that had permitted them access as there was no point in attempting deportation proceedings until the source of entry had first been secured.

Tensions mounted as the red squirrel continued to freely cross the border at will making a mockery of our immigration laws.

Covert action was required.

Covert action was put into play. We were on high alert.

The red squirrel was under round-the-clock surveillance.



The high commissioner sent me out on a reconnaissance mission to discover the point of entry.





Following a long, boring day of surveillance, I was taking a break and had just poured myself my daily allotted shot of rum from my provisions when I saw an alien scout approach the no man’s land between our borders.

A tired soldier enjoying a well deserved treat from his daily provisions.

Silently drawing closer, the red squirrel spotted me. Sitting high above me in a branch of the tree that I had thought was providing me camouflage, the red squirrel began to verbally harass me and taunt me with his ceaseless chants.

I laughed at his tirade which seemed to make him angry. And that’s when the red squirrel made his mistake. His anger got the best of him and instead of leaving to return when the border was undefended, he chose to rush me. Running the length of the branch, the red squirrel jumped from the end of the tree branch flying through the air to land on the edge of the roof. He scampered stealthily up to the peak of the roof and vanished into an opening in the soffit.

We lost the battle on that day, but it was not in vain.

Cutting off the supply root.

A path of destruction is often the unfortunate result of war.

The following day I set out on a new mission. My first assignment was to destroy the bridge the red squirrel had used by cutting down the tree branches that provided access.

Ensuring first that there were no aliens within our borders, I then secured the undefended hole in the border with insulation and foam.

I waited patiently for the lone scout to return and endured the first of my harassing chatters when the destroyed bridge was first discovered.  As I had anticipated, the red squirrel would not be easily defeated. He rushed me again and when he met no resistance, ran past me, scaled the wall, reaching the roof in seconds.

It was exhilarating to watch.

Although he was the enemy I could not help but admire the red squirrel’s skill and determination. We was a worthy adversary.

But this time he was not able to cross our borders

More yelling and chanting ensued from the red squirrel before he finally accepted defeat and retreated to his territory in the woods.

Victory was at hand and not a shot had been fired.

A full scale war had been averted and I was not required to make the ugly decision on whether using conventional weapons would have been sufficient or if chemical warfare would have been justified.

Following lengthy negotiations, a peace treaty was signed with the red squirrel and we have reluctantly agreed upon a neutral zone that the red squirrel will be permitted to use. We were not happy with this condition but sometimes compromises have to be made in the interest of peace. In turn we insisted on an embargo against the red squirrel.

Under constant surveillance, the red squirrel is captured here on film in blatant violation of the embargo set in place as part of the peace treaty.

The red squirrel seems to be resentful of the embargo we have in place but that is to be expected. Always under constant surveillance, we are aware that provisions intended for the chipmunk and other wildlife are sometimes hijacked by the red squirrel. In the interest of peace we tend to overlook it unless it becomes a blatant violation of our treaty or another attack on our borders takes place.

But this morning we awoke to a red alert as we thought our treaty had been broken. There was no denying that we had been invaded once more and we could only assume the red squirrel had discovered another hole in our border.

The access point this time appeared to be the chimney.

All forces were put on alert when scratching noises were determined to be coming from our wood stove which has been dormant for the summer.

The sunroom was put on lockdown. Doors to the bedroom and hallway were secured, Doors leading to the outside were opened to ensure the enemy had full access to a retreat should he choose that course of action.

We peered into the window of the wood stove and were relieved however to discover that the breach was a chick-a-dee that had found his way into our chimney, down the pipes and into the wood stove.

The chick-a-dee was quickly taken into custody. After a full investigation to ensure the chick-a-dee was not on an espionage mission for the red squirrel, he was processed for deportation and soon on the first flight home.

The official report states the chick-a-dee accidently crossed into our borders with no malice aforethought and the file has been closed.

We have no formal treaties with the chick-a-dees but they will be on watch for any further suspicious activity.

– 30 –

One Comment


    OMG – Funny!
    I don’t normally enjoy war dramas but Sun Tzu would be proud.

Leave a Response