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December 1, 2012

Looking back: It's important to show compassion for all creatures

(Continued)

We enjoy feeding all the various kinds of birds and, of course, there are moochers who delight in all the freebies, too. At present we have visits by a beautiful black squirrel we call Blackie, gray squirrels, chipmunks and a cute sassy little red squirrel who scolds loudly to get his turn in the feeder. We thoroughly enjoy watching all the activity of each little bit of life with their cute ways, especially the circus maneuvers on the hanging suet cakes.

One early evening, after dark, when I peeked out the back door, I couldn’t believe my eyes. There was a huge fluffy ball of brown fur taking up the whole A-frame feeder. As I gaped and blinked, a tail poked out with the telltale rings ... then came the little bandit face with pointy ears. He did a great job of clearing out every speck in crack and cranny, saving me a much-needed cleaning job. He was so hungry that my presence didn’t seem to bother him at all. It was quite a delight to see the little critter eat. He’s so polite, with his little fingered-paws scooping up each tiny morsel. We call him Ringo. That seemed to be an apt name for a raccoon.

Every so often, a neighbor cat will stop by to enjoy a few crunchies that we leave on the porch, and several strays have found a much needed meal there. But when Ringo showed up, and then when his family of three little bandits came the following night, we were worried that there might be a confrontation since the crunchy cat food was everyone’s favorite. What to do? For this became a nightly scene.

Our daughter fixed Tigger a nice comfy bed in one of our plastic laundry baskets under the porch. Now he had a place to call home and lots to eat during the day so as not to have to ferret at night ... so we hoped.

Then the Sandy monster storm threatened, and in came the new boarder.

We would like to find him a good home.

Elaine W. Kniskern is a 80-year-old resident of Schenevus and a grandmother of five. She can reached at elaine-kniskern@stny.rr.com. ‘Senior Scene’ columns can be found at www. thedailystar.com/seniorscene.

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