Nature Notes

Vol. XI July - 1933 No. 5

An Unstuffed Museum Specimen

There was an unexpected museum visitor in the building at Longmire one June morning. A Douglas Squirrel came loping thru the front door, ran around the rooms with an investigational air and jumped upon the publications counter. Having few good photos of the Douglas Squirrel, a ranger-naturalist hastened to close the door and approached the intruder holding an inverted hat ready.

The hand may be quicker than the eye, but the Douglas Squirrel is quicker than both. The would-be captor found himself dashing about the museum making ineffectual lunges and awkward swoops as the squirrel jumped from the floor to desk and scrambled up window screens and casings. Jumping upon the large relief map of the park he sprang from Dege Peak to Gibralter Rock, thence to Mt. Wow. From there he flung himself to the opposite wall and thence to the display case running nimbly along the back of a mounted Otter and launched himself toward the head of a bobcat where he paused for a rest. Again he sprang to the relief map and cleared the summit of Mt. Rainier in one great bound, dashing to the front part of the museum he sought seclusion in the typewriter and thence among the paper in the waste basket. When capture seemed immenent he was away from his clumsy pursuers to another display case where careening Indian baskets and rock specimens marked his trail.

Finally a lucky lunge and the squirrel was captured beneath a hat but frantic scratchings inside and the sudden appearance of teeth tips through the felt made it immediately necessary to transfer the captive to less perishable quarters. The transfer was not successful and the entire performance was repeated.

However, his capture was finally effected and the squirrel photographed. Soon after he was set free again.

Natt Dodge, Ranger-


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