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Old November 1, 2008, 07:00 PM   #1
Josh Smith
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The Biggest Squirrel I Have Ever Taken

I stepped into the woods today to watch a deer. It's a mid-size doe that I'm keeping an eye on. It comes to the creek every day around 4:00pm to drink. It's crossed my mind that maybe I should shoot it, but this one seems to be more for watching than anything else. It usually gets within 10 to 25 yards of me before it shies off, depending on the day. It was feeling bold today and got pretty close.

I saw what I thought was a small wood chuck off about 30, 40 yards away. Only it was the wrong color. I slowly went prone, brought my "squirrel sniper" to my shoulder, chambering a round as I did so, and beheld the biggest danged squirrel I've seen outside of captivity rooting around on the ground. I turned the safety on and back off, making a loud clicking sound. (If you've ever dealt with the safety on a Romanian trainer, you know what I mean). Mr. Godzilla Squirrel stood up, I centered the crosshairs on its chest as its head was obscured, and squeezed one off.


This is the biggest squirrel I have ever taken.

The squirrel toppled and didn't even thrash. It was a very clean kill, and one I'm proud of.

The deer watched all this with interest, then went back to drinking.

While skinning the animal, I found that the bullet, a Winchester XPERT .22LR HP round, began expanding almost immediately. It nicked the spine, creating a secondary projectile of a vertebrae which went partially through some muscle on the back. The spinal shot would explain the lack of thrashing. The bullet exited, leaving a hole about .30". There is not much bloodshot meat however, and I'm very pleased.

This makes three squirrel in the freezer now, and I may pass up the squirrel stew and instead make something in the oven.

I still can't get over the size of that critter though!

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Old November 1, 2008, 07:05 PM   #2
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that is a big boy. way beyond frying size. stew or dumplings with that bad boy.
congrats from another squack hunter.
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Old November 1, 2008, 08:07 PM   #3
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That is a fox squirrel, also known as a red squirrel. Fox squirrels usually live in tall timber, down in the swamps where the trees are mature and have plenty of nuts. They don't do as well in the 'burbs and other desolate areas as do the common gray tree rats.
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Old November 1, 2008, 08:13 PM   #4
Josh Smith
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Yep, and most fox squirrel here are big, but not this big. I just took another one that I only thought was big.

The grays that I have on my land are the size of regular fox squirrel.

Red squirrel are much smaller, and not native to this part of the country (Indiana). They're also known as piney squirrels and are in between the size of a chipmunk and a gray.

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Old November 1, 2008, 10:46 PM   #5
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That ax is so ominous... you know what's coming for this unfortunately large squirrel

Nice, though!
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Old November 2, 2008, 01:08 AM   #6
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might have to upgrade to the .22 mag if they keep growing that size..... j/k of course. nice trophy! post back let us know how much fat is on that thing. where i am... NY... the gray squirrels have very very little fat on them. i'm curious if this thing has a lot of fat/and is big. or is the usual fat content just lots of muscle. He was definitly the enforcer in his part of the woods haha
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Old November 2, 2008, 01:24 AM   #7
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Did you check out the stomach contents when you cleaned him? Wonder what it was eating... I've never seen a squirrel quite that football-shaped before.

This is clear evidence that we need to start testing wildlife for performance-enhancing drugs. Imagine the terror that a large numer of those bodybuilder bushytails could cause. It would only take a dozen or so to flip a car.
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Old November 2, 2008, 03:00 AM   #8
Josh Smith
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Quote:
might have to upgrade to the .22 mag if they keep growing that size..... j/k of course. nice trophy! post back let us know how much fat is on that thing. where i am... NY... the gray squirrels have very very little fat on them. i'm curious if this thing has a lot of fat/and is big. or is the usual fat content just lots of muscle.
I had to trim away a lot of fat - more than I've seen on any other squirrel - but there's quite a bit more muscle than I'm used to as well.

Sucker was just big all around.

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Old November 2, 2008, 03:05 AM   #9
Josh Smith
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Quote:
Did you check out the stomach contents when you cleaned him? Wonder what it was eating... I've never seen a squirrel quite that football-shaped before.
I didn't check - it didn't void its bladder when it died, but rather waited until I had skinned it. I was in a hurry to get that tainted meat into some salt water!

The staple diet of the squirrels here seems to be apples and nuts of all sorts - I have several shag bark hickories here as well as a bunch of other nut producing trees.

As well, I have a bird feeder out around where I took him. I'm trying to bring the songbirds back and kill the sparrows. It's working, but the seed is going a bit faster than I would guess it would.

I've not seen squirrel on it though, and have taken steps to keep them off of it.

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Old November 2, 2008, 07:48 AM   #10
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That was a mercy killing. That thing was like a football with fur and legs.
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Old November 2, 2008, 07:54 AM   #11
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Did you take a bicycle pump to him?
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Old November 2, 2008, 08:34 AM   #12
waudcutter
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I shot this Russian squirrel over by Chernobyl a couple of years ago.




Attached Images
File Type: jpg squirrel.jpg (47.7 KB, 130 views)
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Old November 2, 2008, 09:18 AM   #13
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nice tree rat el chivato. did you weigh it? just curious how heavy it was.
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Old November 2, 2008, 01:24 PM   #14
Josh Smith
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Well, I'll tell ya', I'm guessing around 5lbs before I dressed it out. I've got two or three pounds of meat from it.

I almost got a fish deliar but didn't feel like messing with it. I drew my fully loaded 1911, holstered it, and then picked up this fella. He was a pound or two heavier than the all steel 1911, if that gives you a ballpark figure.

Next time, I will weigh it.

There are a couple I've watched on my range about 100yds out. I think I'll take a shot one of these days, and am practicing for it. They're fatties as well, but a lot smarter than this one. Still, I think that I could take one if I have the patience to wait for a perfect shot.

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Old November 2, 2008, 10:25 PM   #15
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Nice squirrel, nice shot.

A heads-up - I shot a bulk package of Xpert. In general, the stuff is not that good. Kind of high percentage are duds, many others have loose bullets and they are just not as consistent as the good old Winchester Super-X. (any variety, but HP would be best for bushytails)

I took a head shot on a small squirrel with one of the Super-X HPs. It entered in his lower right jaw, and took off the whole top-left of his head. This may have had more to do with hitting bone than with the performance of the HP, but it was explosive nonetheless, and I've never had a misfire with Super-X. (the non-bulk, gray box stuff)
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Old November 3, 2008, 11:41 AM   #16
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WOW, that dude had some good genes, maybe you should have let him pass then on to some off spring. That one has some champion blood line in their somewhere. If they were all that size I'd do more squirrel hunting. Hard to miss that one, let alone not hear it coming.
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Old November 3, 2008, 12:06 PM   #17
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Nice, but rather small when compared to the mutant tree rats I have here.
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Old November 3, 2008, 12:14 PM   #18
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that thing is enormous. there needs to be a congressional session to see if it is juiced.

your lucky he didnt see you first, he might be packing.

T
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Old November 3, 2008, 12:25 PM   #19
Josh Smith
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Quote:
A heads-up - I shot a bulk package of Xpert. In general, the stuff is not that good. Kind of high percentage are duds, many others have loose bullets and they are just not as consistent as the good old Winchester Super-X. (any variety, but HP would be best for bushytails)
I've encountered the loose bullets, but so far, all but one have been extremely consistent, allowing a 50 yard target looking like this:


50yds, three shots...

... and a 100 yard target that has a group which can be covered by a quarter. I'd probably do better at this range with a higher powered 'scope.

Only one round from the 200-250rnds I've fired thus far has been in any way underpowered, and I've had zero failures to fire.

I hope I did not just get a lucky box.

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Old November 3, 2008, 07:14 PM   #20
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Definitely on steroids. Have you noticed any side effects after you ate him? Just looking at the hatchet tells you that is one big treerat. Beware, they may have a PT program and they may be bulking up to take over the woods.
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Old November 3, 2008, 08:16 PM   #21
MeekAndMild
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Quote:
Red squirrel are much smaller,
YOu must live out west? Are the little reds you described one of the ground squirrel breeds or are they the ones with little tufts of hair on the ears? Or a different type?

In the southeast we don't have a small breed of red squirrels though we do have a 3 striped ground squirrel. We don't have too many fox squirrels around here but I've noticed the greys are really fat this year, I suspect due to our overwhelmingly good nut crop.
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Old November 3, 2008, 08:45 PM   #22
hogdogs
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WAY NICE KILL!!!! That is by far the biggest squirrel I have seen shot! I have seen some white lookin' fox squirrels that are pretty big but I doubt they are that big. In Florida the Fox squirrel is protected and off limits. The greys have pushed them from nearly every tree they had once resided.
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Old November 3, 2008, 10:14 PM   #23
Josh Smith
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Quote:
YOu must live out west? Are the little reds you described one of the ground squirrel breeds or are they the ones with little tufts of hair on the ears? Or a different type?
Hello,

No, I live in Indiana.

This is what I think when someone says "red squirrel": http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Red_Squirrel

I've only seen one, and was surprised to see it here.

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Old November 4, 2008, 04:18 AM   #24
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El Chivato.....

Nice looking Scope on that rifle.
Please, Can you advise the make and model?
Plus a little info on that Romanian Trainer as well.
Looks like a combo I'd like to own.
Thanks.
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Old November 4, 2008, 08:34 AM   #25
hogdogs
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I do remember poor as a kid in Michigan and one fox squirrel was enough meat for the family of 5 for a supper!
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