Woman Finds A Nest Inside Car With Some Very Cute Babies
Mom was so happy to get them back ❤️️
Last Friday, Katie LaBarbera overheard her neighbors chatting outside her window. They hadn’t driven for a week, and now, their car refused to start.
When her neighbors popped the hood, they discovered a pile of twigs and leaves tucked inside the car engine. LaBarbera, a biologist, decided to poke her head out and see if she could be of any help.
This evening I heard a neighbor talking outside my window: “Yeah, it won’t start, I think the battery’s dead. ....oh my god!!! I think it’s a squirrel! Is it nesting?!?”— Dr. Katie LaBarbera (@FeatheredKatie) March 28, 2020
So I popped right out and asked if I could look. Well: pic.twitter.com/P5SUJTB8f1
The cluster of leaves in the engine was, in fact, a squirrel nest. Peering inside, LaBarbera saw a fuzzy brown face glaring at her from between the engine parts. She immediately recognized it as belonging to the skinny, half-hairless squirrel she had recently begun feeding — and in the nest lay her four pink newborn babies.
“Far and away the best option would have been to close the hood and not use the car for a month, but my neighbor wasn’t a fan of that idea,” LaBarbera wrote on Twitter. “So I grabbed a box and put the nest-plus-babies inside.”
“Squirrels make multiple nests,” she added. “So I was hoping we could convince Mom to take her babies to a different nest.”
LaBarbera placed the box next to a large tree and waited for Mom to sniff out her babies. She knew time was running out as it was almost dusk, and if the squirrel didn’t find her babies before dark she might not claim them at all.
“I put the box next to her tree, but she wasn’t sure what to make of it,” LaBarbera wrote. “She was furious at us and not connecting the box to her babies.”
LaBarbera knew she had to figure out a way to get Mom’s attention, so she reached in the box and lifted out one of the babies. She ideally wanted to use gloves — but didn’t have any on hand and time was of the essence.
Disturbed by the motion, the baby squeaked and, suddenly, Mom appeared. The squirrel looked inside the box and seemed relieved to find her babies safe and sound.
I had noticed while moving the nest that the babies could be inspired by motion to make noise. I tried picking up a baby (normally I’d do this with gloves, but who has gloves now??) and it helpfully squeaked, and then suddenly - Mom was there! pic.twitter.com/28w4lbzRvc— Dr. Katie LaBarbera (@FeatheredKatie) March 28, 2020
“She ran through a neighbor’s yard, under a fence, up the trunk of a large tree just starting to bud, and disappeared into a hole at the base of a large branch,” LaBarbera wrote. “After that she didn’t need any help: She knew where her babies were. One by one, she came and fetched the remaining three.”
LaBarbera was so happy to be able to reunite a worried mom with her babies, and she will continue to keep an eye on the little family until they're all grown up.
And for those who aren't driving as much these days, she had one simple message: "Check your engines for squirrel babies!"