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Town Square

Aggressive Squirrels in Mitchell Park

Original post made by Resident w/kids on Jul 31, 2013

Hi, just wanted to give a heads up to parents about aggressive squirrels in Mitchell Park. Yesterday another squirrel scratched a boy on the arm while he was playing. This is the second time I have seen this happen. Several months ago a squirrel scratched a boy on his face.

The boys were chasing the squirrels because the squirrels will often come down from the tree and forage in people's snack bags for chips and bread. The children often like to chase the squirrels away, for good reason. But these squirrels are very aggressive and will fight back.

Please advise your children to stay away from the squirrels.

Comments

Posted by dont feed the squirrels, a resident of Midtown
on Jul 31, 2013 at 9:07 am

When wild animals are regularly fed by humans (either intentionally or not), the animals become aggressive around humans. Blame your neighbors and kids for encouraging the aggressive behavior. Everyone needs to store your food in animal-proof containers.


Posted by Ronnie, a resident of Midtown
on Jul 31, 2013 at 1:58 pm

This reminds me of the super-evil squirrels at Cuesta Park in Mtn View a few years back. That story even made the Drudge Report!

Anyway, they banned food at Cuesta and I think it helped. I remember going there with my kids and a footlong sub that I was really looking forward to eating, and one of those despicable things stole my sub! After that, I self-imposed a food ban and just ate in the car.

Don't fee the squirrels is definitely right - if people were more serious about keeping food away, the problem would probably improve.


Posted by Zoologist, a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Jul 31, 2013 at 3:01 pm

Not only will feeding a wild animal make it aggressive, if the animal is sick or rabid it will become unusually aggressive.

Definitely stay away from wild animals!


Posted by anonymous, a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on Jul 31, 2013 at 4:39 pm

In past I have had evidence some neighbors or people nearby were feeding peanuts to squirrels, because we have tons of squirrels around and I often used to find peanut shells on my property, near the fenceline, where presumably the squirrels had run and dropped them.
Please don't feed the squirrels. I think they carry disease yet are protected, all we can do is minimize their effect, not encourage them and have children scratched!


Posted by Anonymous, a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Aug 1, 2013 at 3:06 pm

Mitchell Park squirrels (and gulls and crows) forage through all the trash left behind picnics and soccer games. They have plenty of human food to consume so it's no wonder they go after human food.