Creating a wildlife haven one plant at a time

Friday, March 15, 2013

Cheeky Chipmunks

I don't know if there is a more adorable garden rodent than the chipmunk. There is just something about their chubby cheeks that raises the cuteness meter. And, they have the funniest expressions as if they are about to get in trouble.


They are typically ground dwellers that create extensive burrows; sometimes longer than 30 feet. However, they will climb trees for food or protection. Not hard to imagine when you  look closely at those long nails. 


Their favorite place to forage in our garden is at the open feeders which are set up for the ground feeding birds such as dove and sparrows. A chipmunk's typical diet consists of corn, acorns, sunflower seeds, mushrooms, and caterpillars.


  Recently, I tried a new homemade suet recipe and put some out in these feeders. It didn't take them long to sniff out the suet and dig in as if it was their birthday lunch.


If you look closely at the photo above you can see this little guy is actually licking the suet. That peanut butter must be really tasty!


Chipmunks are one of the smaller members of the squirrel family, considered pests by many. However, they are somewhat territorial so rarely become abundant enough to become a problem. Besides, they have the cuteness factor on their side. It is hard to get mad at all their hole digging when you  look at those adorable cheeks. I just want to hug them!

27 comments:

  1. To są szkodniki, ale śliczne, sprytne i kochane. Urocze zdjecia. Pozdrawiam.
    They are pests, but beautiful, clever and loved. Lovely pictures. Yours.

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  2. Great captures of that little guy! I've always adored Chippies.

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  3. I have to admit the photos are adorable but I sure don't like the destruction they can cause.
    Cher Sunray Gardens

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  4. Yes, they are cute and sometimes make me smile, but I would prefer they dig in someone else's yard.

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  5. Chipmunks are so cute but they sure make a mess... I am like the last writer... I prefer them in someone else's yard.

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  6. How adorable, we don't have them here in London, we do however have squirrels and they are also best when they are in other people's gardens! I like watching the squirrels but don't like the mess they create. What kind of damage do the chipmunks do?

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    1. Mostly they make lots of holes in the garden. We even have some in the lawn and on occasion they will dig close to a plant and damage the roots.

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  7. We have some chipmunks as well. It's true about their facial expressions. When they are still, they seem to be saying "Take no notice of me! I'll just sit here in the corner!" When they are eating, they seem to be in a state of bliss.

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    1. They do get very engrossed in their foraging! I am always amazed how much they can fit in those cheeks!

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  8. I adore chipmunks...we had many at the old house and they were such joy...they used to talk with us and had the cutest faces...we see them occasionally here...always looking for a good suet recipe if you ever feel like sharing...hint, hint!

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    1. I didn't think about posting the link to the recipe...good idea. It came from Rebecca at The Garden-roof coop http://www.thegardenroofcoop.com/2013/01/diy-suet-feeders.html She has several has a whole series of outstanding homemade bird feeders and suet as well as excellent bird photos. I think you will enjoy her blog!

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  9. I hope my comment goes through. I was here yesterday and it didn't for some reason. You cannot beat chipmunks in the cute department. I always liked the The Chipmunks when growing up. Alvin!!!! Your post reminds me of them. Great photos Karin.

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    1. Thanks Donna! Not sure why you were unable to post your comment. Glad you came back to try again! The chipmunks really are fun to watch. Sasha, our female golden retriever, loves watching them out the window. She has come very close to catching them several times.

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  10. Glad somebody else likes these critters too. Chipmunks are one of my favourite garden animals, but then I've never had a big problem with them digging. Had no idea the nails were so long though, kind of amazing.

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    1. I have fond memories of feeding chipmunks out of my hand at Mt. Rainer. I don't think the ones in my garden would ever let me get that close so we mostly watch them through the windows.

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  11. They've got the Freddy Krueger hands. No chipmunks here for some reason but there are lots in Chapel Hill. They love all of the stone walls there.

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    1. I was just in Chapel Hill this past weekend visiting my sister. I didn't see any chipmunks at her place this time but there were lots of robins.

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  12. I started laughing at the photo of the chipmunk licking the suet. Too funny.

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  13. Cuteness times ten! I have always loved chipmunks. And I often get very excited when I see one in the garden--stopping everything to watch its antics. Wonderful photos of these beloved creatures!

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  14. He's so cute ! Great pictures.. looks like your gardens are going to be the talk of the chipmunk community better keep the treats coming..hugs, Cherry

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  15. Hi Karin, I met you in Asheville last year at the bloggers' fling. (Hard to believe that was almost a year ago). I've got a post on chipmunks coming up this week, but my photos are nowhere near as good as yours. You've certainly captured the little critters' endearing expressions. Their habits are not always so endearing, but I love watching them.

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  16. I agree. Chipmunks are adorable. We have fewer chipmunks than squirrels here. It is funny that in Nova Scotia, where I grew up, it is just the opposite: fewer squirrels and lots of chipmunks. I have no idea why there were different sized populations in the two places. Different food sources and abundance of food perhaps?
    Do chipmunks hibernate? I never see them in the winter here.

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  17. Karin, I am still giving it a thought. After more than two years, I do not want to start over again. Will keep posted on changes. Cute pics!

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  18. Cute photos .. always a joy to visit and catch up, dear Karin ... oh, but those cute chipmunks with chubby cheeks raise huge havoc in my gardens and elsewhere. For almost 40 years on this piece of earth ... they drive my husband bonkers!

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  19. Oh my gosh, they are so adorable! We don't have any chipmunks here just sassy squirrels. Your header photo is amazing. :o) He definitely looks like he was caught by surprise.

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