Eating what’s in Season

April 23, 2012 | Greg Dodge

Last month, elm seeds (3/28/12).

The Museum’s gray squirrels have shifted their diet from elm to mulberry. The dark succulent berries of the mulberry trees are ripening as I write and the squirrels have found them. I found them too, and they are delicious!

I don’t know a mammal or bird that would pass up a big juicy mulberry. It’s a good thing that the trees produce copious amount of the berries, too many if you talk to homeowners that have them next to their driveways or backyard decks.

….

This month, mulberries (4/17/12).

Keep an eye out for Gray Fox and Groundhog as you leave Catch the Wind on your way to see the Lemurs. There’s a very prolific mulberry (they’re all prolific) across from the Catch the Wind map on the outdoor loop, and I’ve seen both those animals lapping up mulberries from the path there. Both Gray Fox and Groundhog can and do climb mulberry trees for the berries, but why climb when so many of the delectable fruit fall to the ground.

So, as you stroll through Catch the Wind and you begin to notice purple stains on the ground beneath your feet, look up, there may be a big juicy mulberry within your reach. It’s almost a sure thing that there’ll be a catbird, thrasher, waxwing, or squirrel up there gulping them down!

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