Now that I have a back yard again, I've been thinking that I'd like to turn it into a small wildlife garden. I'm finding that the local tree squirrels already had that idea. Apparently there aren't many cats in this neighborhood, as the local squirrel population is thriving. They like to use the low-pitched house roofs, abundant trees, and tops of fences to get around--sort of a squirrel highway. My alarm clock most mornings is the thud of a squirrel jumping from a tree branch onto my roof.
One pair of squirrels in particular has taken over my back yard. I sometimes feel like a sort of Jane Goodall of squirrels as I eat my meals and observe them, just a few feet away on the other side of the window glass, eating, mating, or just running around. One side benefit is that they are nesting now, so either the female, the male or both of the pair ( I can't tell them apart) have been collecting great mouthfuls of the dead leaves I've been meaning to rake up and taking them away to line a nest. It's very impressive how many leaves and bits of dead grass they manage to stuff in their mouths at one go.