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Thread: frozen acorns kill squirrels

  1. #41
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    Default Re: frozen acorns kill squirrels

    I just had my boys pick up acorns yesterday for my flyers, I have washed them and none floated. Now I am concerned to feed them to my babies. They were on the ground probably a month but I check a few for the color inside they look fine. I have not feed them any yet, should I crack each one before I feed them or just throw them back out? Acorns are their favorite treat but they can learn to love almonds or hazel nuts.

    So sorry for your loss Uni

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    Default Re: frozen acorns kill squirrels

    bamababies...you know how the panic gets when something horrible like this happens...I'm not sure what to tell you. I've heard to float them (that's what I did), I've heard to ONLY get them off of the trees, not after they fall to the ground, I've heard to freeze them, I've heard to only feed them when they're fresh and "in season" b/c they are seasonal, and last night I heard to bake them before you freeze them.

    Apparently, from what I understand researching, mycotoxins are the waste product (poop) of the mold once it gets to a certain point. There is no treatment for it. Other than that, I suppose the decision is up to you. I have GALLONS of the large Burberry acorns frozen that I took directly off of the trees, but I still haven't decided whether to trash them or feed them or bake them or what...I do normally end up erring on the side of caution...better "no harm, no foul" than "hind sight is 20/20" IMO.

    OH and also, I'm concerned with the fact that you can't kill the actual toxin. Will baking it actually remove the toxicity?!? I'm not thinking so, but it's a good question for one of the microbiologists/biologists.

  3. #43
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    Default Re: frozen acorns kill squirrels

    Quote Originally Posted by Unikorngrrl View Post
    bamababies...you know how the panic gets when something horrible like this happens...I'm not sure what to tell you. I've heard to float them (that's what I did), I've heard to ONLY get them off of the trees, not after they fall to the ground, I've heard to freeze them, I've heard to only feed them when they're fresh and "in season" b/c they are seasonal, and last night I heard to bake them before you freeze them.

    Apparently, from what I understand researching, mycotoxins are the waste product (poop) of the mold once it gets to a certain point. There is no treatment for it. Other than that, I suppose the decision is up to you. I have GALLONS of the large Burberry acorns frozen that I took directly off of the trees, but I still haven't decided whether to trash them or feed them or bake them or what...I do normally end up erring on the side of caution...better "no harm, no foul" than "hind sight is 20/20" IMO.

    OH and also, I'm concerned with the fact that you can't kill the actual toxin. Will baking it actually remove the toxicity?!? I'm not thinking so, but it's a good question for one of the microbiologists/biologists.
    I can answer that last part - no, baking won't kill the toxin. It is why you still sometimes hear about problems in peanut butter with humans - it is made from dry roasted peanuts but if the aflatoxin is present, the roasting doesn't matter. In my opinion, acorns have gotten as close to the "do not feed" list as they can get. All of my guys are meh on them anyway.

  4. #44
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    Default Re: frozen acorns kill squirrels

    I think it would be best for the babies then to toss the acorns, I would rather be safe than sorry.

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    Default Re: frozen acorns kill squirrels

    I collect acorns every year and I do float them, then I dry them on cookie sheets in the sun or on the counter, then I freeze them. I noticed that several of you say you also float them. From my research the floaters are the bad ones. The floaters have a hole somewhere and air got into the nut...air being lighter than water makes the nut float, floating is bad. I tested this by putting all of the floaters on a tray and the sinkers on another tray...the wilds ate all of the sinkers and ignored the floaters. At my house all of the floaters and mid-lines (the ones that are suspended in mid water) get thrown into the garbage can. Sinkers are dried and frozen.

    Just sharing my experiences.

    EDIT: Uni, I am so very sorry for your loss.

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  6. #46
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    Default Re: frozen acorns kill squirrels

    Where my babies are concerned, and I am responsible for their well being, I won't feed them acorns at all. There are other things they like, and since none have been in the wild, they don't even know what they are missing. Pecans, walnuts, almonds, veggies, and fruits they love, and I always have an abundance of. Why risk it? Just my opinion, but my babies will stay safe and I will love on them through a long life!
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  7. #47
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    Default Re: frozen acorns kill squirrels

    Sorry, double post. *Sigh*
    Squaddy to Rex - The Forever Baby boy!, Winkers , the One Eye Foxy Squirrel Princess!, Hanzel , The sweetest Maloccluded boy in the world!, and now Mr. Cuddles , the very young Old Man!


    Successes that we thought were not releasable
    -

    Blue Belle (the squirrel who got braces and is now running wild in the trees!) and Felix, the cat bit squirrel who decided to be a stay at home squirrel and then changed his mind and is now running wild in the trees too! Clifford A beautiful Foxer who is now the wild squirrel he was supposed to be.

    Mittens Who will be in the trees this fall, after being hit by a car and spending 2 year rehabbing so he could run the trees again.

    Gone to the Rainbow Bridge, but not forgotten -

    Stevie , the Blind Foxy Wonder Squirrel! - I tried, but wasn't able to save you beautiful Foxer girl.

  8. #48
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    Default Re: frozen acorns kill squirrels

    Quote Originally Posted by Milo's Mom View Post
    I collect acorns every year and I do float them, then I dry them on cookie sheets in the sun or on the counter, then I freeze them. I noticed that several of you say you also float them. From my research the floaters are the bad ones. The floaters have a hole somewhere and air got into the nut...air being lighter than water makes the nut float, floating is bad. I tested this by putting all of the floaters on a tray and the sinkers on another tray...the wilds ate all of the sinkers and ignored the floaters. At my house all of the floaters and mid-lines (the ones that are suspended in mid water) get thrown into the garbage can. Sinkers are dried and frozen.

    Just sharing my experiences.

    EDIT: Uni, I am so very sorry for your loss.
    Just a heads up, Uni also floated her acorns before freezing and we know what happened. It might be possible that Uni lost power at some point and her acorns thawed out or something else but floating may not be a perfect test.
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  9. #49
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    Default Re: frozen acorns kill squirrels

    Uni, I am so sorry for your massive loss. My heart goes out to you.

    When you opened up the other acorns, what did they look like? Were they full of dark crumble?

    I give my flyers frozen acorns all of the time and sometimes they won't eat one. When I open it, it's rotten, which tells me they can tell somehow.

    I'll be cracking all of the acorns in half from now on just to be sure. I still think it's an important part of their diet.

  10. #50
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    Default Re: frozen acorns kill squirrels

    Quote Originally Posted by Milo's Mom View Post
    I tested this by putting all of the floaters on a tray and the sinkers on another tray...the wilds ate all of the sinkers and ignored the floaters.
    Somewhere I have heard wilds won't eat an acorn that have been on the ground over 24 hours.
    Don't know how factual that is but many times in the forest I have seen the ground laden with
    beautiful acorns and foraging squirrels ignoring them. I have even tested a few on my wilds and
    watched as they pick one up, roll it around, and then throw it down.

    Quote Originally Posted by Milo's Mom View Post
    I collect acorns every year and I do float them, then I dry them on cookie sheets in the sun or on the counter, then I freeze them.
    Having them thoroughly dried before freezing just makes good sense.
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  11. #51
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    Default Re: frozen acorns kill squirrels

    [QUOTE=stepnstone;972919]Somewhere I have heard wilds won't eat an acorn that have been on the ground over 24 hours.
    Don't know how factual that is but many times in the forest I have seen the ground laden with
    beautiful acorns and foraging squirrels ignoring them. I have even tested a few on my wilds and
    watched as they pick one up, roll it around, and then throw it down.


    You might be on to something.
    My ground is littered with acorns right now and I watch the squirrels foraging for anything other than the acorns. When they were first starting to fall there was a free for all and now they want nothing to do with them.

  12. #52
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    Default Re: frozen acorns kill squirrels

    Quote Originally Posted by MiriamS View Post
    Uni, I am so sorry for your massive loss. My heart goes out to you.

    When you opened up the other acorns, what did they look like? Were they full of dark crumble?
    Thank you Miriam. When I cracked the first one, it looked normal other than somw white on the tip on the outside and a little on the acorn. The white wiped off with my finger and frozen was kind of powdery. The 2nd one I opened with the white on it was fully coated in fuzzy grey mold. The pic is of that one after a day of drying out in the trash can. I'm going to crack more and try to get some pics of them when I first open them. I'll crack some when I fell up to screwing with it.

  13. #53
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    Default Re: frozen acorns kill squirrels

    A few of the last pictures didn't upload b/c my sd card is messed up. I kept everythimg so let me know if these aren't sufficient. None of them really looked bad, but I tried to pick the worst looking ones to open. Some were good and some were bad.

































  14. #54
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    Default Re: frozen acorns kill squirrels

    Thanks Uni ...I know this must be so hard to keep revisiting and opening your wounds I'm crying with ya girl

    Thank you for sharing
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    rests in his beauty on the water, and the great heron feeds.
    I come into the peace of wild things
    who do not tax their lives with forethought
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  15. #55
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    Default Re: frozen acorns kill squirrels

    I guess a squirrel's instincts cover a lot of ground but I they must learn some things by observation of other squirrels and what foods to avoid is apparently one of those things. As hard as it is to share this sort of experience, you've saved lives. Thank you SO much.

  16. #56
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    Default Re: frozen acorns kill squirrels

    It really is a testament to how much you care for squirrels that you're willing to keep rehashing this so soon after your loss.

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    Default Re: frozen acorns kill squirrels

    UNI...I'M SO SORRY FOR YOUR LOSS. HOW AWFUL FOR YOU AND YOUR SQS. THANK YOU FOR POSTING THIS.
    " For the animal shall not be measured by man. In a world older and more complete than ours they move finished and complete, gifted with extensions of the senses we have lost or never attained, living by voices we shall never hear. They are not brethren; they are not underlings; they are other nations, caught with ourselves in the net of life and time, fellow prisoners of the splendor and travail of the earth."

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    Lightbulb Re: frozen acorns kill squirrels

    I bought a book about squirrels & I remember it saying that acorns are very high in tannins. Tannins are very bad for just about any animal or person, except squirrels. Thanks to evolution, squirrels have a natural "tolerance" to tannins (quantity is an issue) & have a much shorter digestive tract, therefore the tannins don't stay in their bodies very long & they don't get sick. Of course there is the quantity they eat, the quality they eat & having a well working digestive/elimination system in place. If they can't poop and pee regularly, then there would be a problem.

    Fungus/mold/spores, are a totally different story. I have seen wild squirrels eat nuts I have put out for them that I discovered afterwards were yucky. They will eat some & then stop and drop or throw it away. I've also come upon leftovers of nuts I have left for them. Those were always somewhat eaten, but obviously parts of it were moldy or black. Monster even got some a time or two & he would fight to keep them! He never would eat more than a few bites of them if he got to it before I noticed it was bad.

    I have several frozen bags of acorns (different kinds), walnuts & pecans. For my own peace of mind, if I ever happen to be lucky enough to help another squirrel, will crack/cut open all nuts & inspect them before they are given to any squirrel. Just how long do frozen nuts keep? All of mine are in the shells. Has anyone else experienced the HUGH red oak acorns? What is the info on putting them in water about? THANKS!!
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    Default Re: frozen acorns kill squirrels

    Thank you guys!

    I just did a float test on 17 of the acorns out of the bag that was frozen. Only 1 floated and it was bad, but the others sank to the bottom. I cracked 8 more and 6 of those were bad...

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    Default Re: frozen acorns kill squirrels

    Uni, please don't blame yourself for this. There is no way you could know, but I also know it is little comfort. What you are doing now is what matters. Let's work to ensure this tragedy never happens again! Please know that myself and many others at TSB are not going to rest until we can educate people on the needless risks these Acorns represent. A well meaning treat is not worth the risk of the loss of our beloved squirrel. I am truly sorry that you had to experience this horror, but from these babies deaths will come much good! You have my promise on this!
    Squaddy to Rex - The Forever Baby boy!, Winkers , the One Eye Foxy Squirrel Princess!, Hanzel , The sweetest Maloccluded boy in the world!, and now Mr. Cuddles , the very young Old Man!


    Successes that we thought were not releasable
    -

    Blue Belle (the squirrel who got braces and is now running wild in the trees!) and Felix, the cat bit squirrel who decided to be a stay at home squirrel and then changed his mind and is now running wild in the trees too! Clifford A beautiful Foxer who is now the wild squirrel he was supposed to be.

    Mittens Who will be in the trees this fall, after being hit by a car and spending 2 year rehabbing so he could run the trees again.

    Gone to the Rainbow Bridge, but not forgotten -

    Stevie , the Blind Foxy Wonder Squirrel! - I tried, but wasn't able to save you beautiful Foxer girl.

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