Watching the black squirrels rise

Mutant black squirrel populations are increasing in Minnesota.

It’s been some time since local wildlife enthusiast Marty Mahowald asked me what I knew about black squirrels. He went on to explain that, in recent years, he has noticed more of these creatures appearing at the bird feeders in his garden.

At the time, I thought it would be a great topic for a column, since the black squirrel population seems to be increasing in our state. However, it was only recently, when I saw one crossing our yard, that I remembered my plan for a column.

There was a period in my hunting career where I spent much of the fall and winter months hunting squirrels. It was a great hobby that I really enjoyed. At some point, ice fishing replaced my squirrel hunting.