I found a squirrel dray (nest)!
Strange to get excited about, I know, but I had never seen one up close.
At the city compost pile this weekend (where people can take their tree trimmings and yard waste, and exchange it, whenever they choose for excellent gardening compost), this nest had been let behind.
I was surprised by its attributes:
- Larger and much, much heavier than I expected. Approximately 2.5 feet in diameter and height, and about 60 pounds.
- Intricately built. The upper part of the nest was a large swirl of pine needles, twigs, and grasses. Coincidentally, it was shaped like a giant acorn.
- There was no obvious opening. In fact, there was seemingly no hollow that I could find initially, just layers of the pine needles and twigs, but with a little more searching I found the center filled with loose, fine grasses. Very well-insulated with the coarsest materials on the outside, with the increasingly finer materials near the center.
- The entire surface was so imbedded with acorns, that they appeared to be part of the support structure, like stones in mortar.
- This one was mostly missing the outer leaf section, I did a little research and found that many build lighter, leafy nests that are outposts used during the day and in warmer months. These lighter nests typically have a higher leaf content and less organized structure.