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Thread: What is your wilds' preferred food hierarchy?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2019
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    Colorado
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    Default What is your wilds' preferred food hierarchy?

    Hoping to get some ideas for new things to feed my wild crew, and curious to see how universal their preferences are.

    (and please chime in if you object to what I'm feeding them.)

    Their preference hierarchy goes like this (all nuts sprinkled with calcium powder)

    1. pumpkin seeds in shell
    2. pecans in shell
    3. avocado
    4. almonds
    5. sunflower seeds
    6. hazelnuts
    7. walnuts
    8. blueberries
    9. pecans not in shell
    10. pepitas/pumpkin seed not in shell
    11. cherry tomato
    12. acorn squash

  2. Serious fuzzy thank you's to Benny from:

    Diggie's Friend (03-25-2020)

  3. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Location
    Florida
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    Default Re: What is your wilds' preferred food hierarchy?

    Hi Benny, I also feed my releases and wild friends. Iím not as concerned about a strict diet with the outside guys. With that said, I have been feeding a LOT of almonds lately so I have decided to dust them with calcium carbonate. I purchased a couple bottles of NOW brand calcium carbonate on Amazon. It should be here any day. I am going to put a tablespoon in a 3 pound bag of shelled almonds and shake it vigorously. Any powder in the bottom of the bag will be dumped in the next bag.

    I have spoiled these little rascals something terrible. They rob the bird feeder and eat nuts so thatís the purpose of the calcium. They love all the unhealthy things. I occasionally give them avocado or fresh corn. Other than these they rarely eat veggies or fruit. I have seen them with an occasional baby carrot. During the season they ate fresh pumpkin. They rarely eat fruit. New releases will eat veggies and fruit but after being outside they usually reject them.

  4. 3 TSBers pass along the fuzzy thanks to HRT4SQRLS:

    Benny (03-13-2020), Chirps (03-13-2020), RockyPops (03-13-2020)

  5. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2018
    Location
    Upstate New York
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    Default Re: What is your wilds' preferred food hierarchy?

    Hi Benny,

    As far as their calcium needs,...I've found a large "untreated" Mule Deer Antler that's TIED to a tree or fence via Paracord or wire the perfect calcium and other minerals supplement source for our fur buddies! They get to nibble on it when they feel the need. (and they DO regularly!) Additionally, it gives their teeth an outlet to keep them from betting too long, as the antler is much harder than any nut shells or wood. This IS generally the way Squirrels pick up their mineral needs in nature, as Deer (Bucks) drop antlers EVERY year!

    Quote I found online as to what antlers contain: "During mineralization and after hardening, antlers are approximately 60% mineral (still 40% protein), primarily calcium (Ca), phosphorous (P), and magnesium (Mg)"

    I picked up several on ebay from the western states. The White Tail Deer here in the North East are MUCH smaller, overall. The Mule Deer ones last much longer.

    This is the 2nd large Mule Deer Antler I tied to a fence, as the 1st one disappeared in a few days,...dragged off by an Opossum, Skunk, or Raccoon? So I tied this one down the next day on June 6, 2018 to a fence.

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    I had to reposition the Paracord soon after behind a "pair" of tines, as the single tine had the wider end bulge eaten away after a few weeks and the cord would have slipped off soon....

    ....and here is the same untreated Mule Deer Tine today,... about 50% GONE over 21 months!

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    ....and a closeup,...as the squirrels seem to like the bone marrow too.

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    ....I figure I have another year left on this one.
    My Squirrel Fur-Buddies see me every morning, and have for about 16 years now! A few generations, surely, but always family I care for deeply. They like to eat really well too, and have generously agreed to help earn their keep.

    So there are several comical Squirrel T-Shirts of some of my favorite family members available here: www.tirodtactical.com

  6. 3 TSBers pass along the fuzzy thanks to joejeweler:

    Benny (03-13-2020), Chirps (03-13-2020), Diggie's Friend (03-25-2020)

  7. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2018
    Location
    Upstate New York
    Posts
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    Thanked: 207

    Default Re: What is your wilds' preferred food hierarchy?

    Quote Originally Posted by HRT4SQRLS View Post
    Hi Benny, I also feed my releases and wild friends. I’m not as concerned about a strict diet with the outside guys. With that said, I have been feeding a LOT of almonds lately so I have decided to dust them with calcium carbonate. I purchased a couple bottles of NOW brand calcium carbonate on Amazon. It should be here any day. I am going to put a tablespoon in a 3 pound bag of shelled almonds and shake it vigorously. Any powder in the bottom of the bag will be dumped in the next bag.

    I have spoiled these little rascals something terrible. They rob the bird feeder and eat nuts so that’s the purpose of the calcium. They love all the unhealthy things. I occasionally give them avocado or fresh corn. Other than these they rarely eat veggies or fruit. I have seen them with an occasional baby carrot. During the season they ate fresh pumpkin. They rarely eat fruit. New releases will eat veggies and fruit but after being outside they usually reject them.
    Yes,...mine are likewise VERY spoiled! I realize feeding lots of nuts can be a health issue, tending to draw Calcium OUT of their tiny bones. However, during the cold winter months here in Upstate New York veggies and fruits can freeze quickly, so I find it more practical to feed 3 to 4.5 Pounds of Almonds per day (and once or twice a week a 1.5 pound bag of Raw Pecans).

    The Mule Deer Antler post above seems to have taken all worry off my mind regarding a heavy diet of nuts,...and my fur buddies look great! I sneak in *Avocado (*makes their fur fuller and with a great sheen) on days above freezing too, and some veggies and fruits too on milder days.

    By the way,...BJ's Wholesale Club has the best Raw Almond prices too, at $15.95 for a 3 pound bag of raw Almonds,...everywhere else smaller bags are double or more per pound!

    It sounds like a lot for 35 to maybe 50 grey squirrels, but I have lots more (100 maybe?) Blue Jays that suck 4-5 down each, and then carry 2-3 off too. Several Chipmunks also make several full pouch "Nut Missions" to their ground burrows too,....so I've had to cover the Nuts with a healthy covering of either shelled Sunflower seeds or un-shelled sunflower hearts to S L O W D O W N the Nut Parade!

    The Blue Jays get whole grain Breads daily too (2-3 loaves as the sparrows gotta eat too), but the Jays prefer the Almonds. So TRY to find the really LARGE Almonds if you can, as it will slow down the Jays and they won't be able to swallow them whole.

    Anyway, other than a little "pot belly" look this time of year (due to less activity in the cold, and soon disappears in the Spring), over the last 10 years or so Almonds and Pecans make up the majority of their Winter feed. (not counting whatever else they get in the wild)
    My Squirrel Fur-Buddies see me every morning, and have for about 16 years now! A few generations, surely, but always family I care for deeply. They like to eat really well too, and have generously agreed to help earn their keep.

    So there are several comical Squirrel T-Shirts of some of my favorite family members available here: www.tirodtactical.com

  8. 3 TSBers pass along the fuzzy thanks to joejeweler:

    Benny (03-13-2020), Chirps (03-13-2020), Diggie's Friend (03-25-2020)

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