My wish is to lead my grandchildren to the tree during our reunion, to pick peaches, fully tree ripened. Won't that experience become a memory for the boys? I remember the fragrance of fully riped peaches, their fuzzy texture, the taste ...delightful.
Look again. There is a half eaten peach on the ground. I find one every morning, in spite of the have-a-hart trap under the tree. There He is! The squirrel bandit, brazenly eating my peaches...sitting right next to the trap.
I've baited the trap with the dropped peaches or with peanut butter on a cracker. This squirrel is savvy. He avoids the trap, preferring to climb the tree.
In the morning, I examine the trap. It is triggered closed. The peanut butter is gone...licked clean from the cracker. Apparently I attracted a mouse who ate the peanut butter, accidentally tripping the trap and walking nonchalantly out of the holes in the trap. At other times, a critter too large for the trap, has reached in and taken the bait. I find the trap upside down and empty. Best guess is a raccoon.
Nature is winning. I am losing. I bait the trap with a fresh peanut butter cracker...and pick all the half ripe peaches from the tree...taking them indoors to finish ripening.
Perhaps my family would enjoy a trip to the local "pick your own" farm. I wonder how the farmer addresses the squirrel problem.