2020—Squirreling

While watching for birds in my yard the other day, this Western Gray Squirrel, a California native, suddenly appeared in my yard. In the thirty years I’ve lived here, I’ve never seen one in my yard. I’ve had other squirrels, the non-native Eastern Gray Squirrel and the non-native Red Fox Squirrel but they’re smaller and don’t have the elegant tail of the Western Gray Squirrel. I was using my Nikon Z6 with the FTZ and Nikkor 300mm PF and Nikon TC 14 Eiii attached as a temporary alternative to my 500mm PF which, along with my Nikon D5, is currently awaiting servicing at the Nikon service facility in Los Angeles. It arrived the day the state imposed shelter-in-place orders and the shuttering of non-essential businesses. I consider Nikon an essential business but their service facility has been temporarily closed so I had to figure out an alternative. My set-up got me close enough to completely fill the frame with this squirrel. And, fortunately, it decided to furl its elegant tail over its back so it all fit in the frame. It had hopped into a pot and was digging for whatever it, or perhaps a Scrub Jay, had buried in the soft soil.

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