Red squirrels work overtime in late summer/early fall gathering mushrooms. I spent several days this week photographing them. Though red squirrels can be a nuisance around our wilderness home I try to tolerate them. Our current red squirrel seems to be satisfied living a life in the wild so as long as he minds his own business he is on the payroll. I discourage bad squirrel behavior such as chewing on the house and if they persist, they get that one way ride up to my mean old neighbor ladies place. And she handles red squirrels just like most of my neighbors do.
My best tip for photographing red squirrels: Hang out with them until they are quite used to your presence and entice them with treats. Otherwise they can be too shy.
Many species of mushrooms are collected by squirrels including those toxic to man. They have the ability to eat poisonous mushrooms. Because of their unique gut, toxins are passed straight through their body without ever entering the bloodstream.
Red squirrels hauls mushrooms to a favorite spruce where they will be dried on boughs.
Dried mushroom make a great midday snack.
Before harvesting, a red squirrel will sample a mushroom. No mushroom is too big as long as it tastes good.
Huge mushroom is torn apart and hauled up a nearby spruce to dry.