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Once upon a midnight dreary, while I pondered weak and weary,
Over many a quaint and curious volume of forgotten lore,
While I nodded, nearly napping, suddenly there came a tapping,
As of some one gently rapping, rapping at my chamber door.
What? Wait! That sound isn’t coming from my chamber door. I don’t even have a chamber door. What is a chamber anyway, and who calls it that?

No, that tapping, that gentle rapping, rapping, isn’t at any door. And it’s more like a scratch, scratch, scratching. Holy crap, it’s coming from the ceiling, and it sure as hell isn’t a raven – Poe’s or anyone else’s.

It’s a squirrel.

Living in a house built in the mid- to late 1700’s has its charm, and it has its drawbacks…including what appears to be an all-access pass for squirrels. And with their all-access pass these squirrels – I’ve counted as many at 12 within a stone’s throw of my back door – are wreaking havoc. And by havoc, I of course mean property damage.

Property damage, I tell you. Emphasis on DAMAGE. There is but one way to resolve this problem, and it can be summed up in three little words.

This. Means. War.

There’s a day of reckoning coming and I plan to unleash an ungodly torrent of lead on these nut-gathering agents of chaos. And when it comes to lead, there’s only delivery system anybody cares about… and that’s the gun.

For the coming squirrelpocalypse there are options at my disposal. There’s the 9mm option, the .22 option, the .22-250 option, the .243 option and, of course, the 12 gauge option. All perfectly good for sending squirrels to meet their maker, although I’m hoping it’s to the bowels of Hell.

Unfortunately, these are all options my neighbors might not appreciate. And unless an Advanced Armament suppressor surreptitiously shows up on my doorstep, firearms are not a viable solution. But it is fun to imagine.

No, I’ll have to go un-gunned on this mission, unless….

To face the legion of squirrels invading my personal castle, I’d need the help and advice of an expert, a world class squirrel hunter. A man whose name alone strikes fear in the hearts of squirrels. I’d need the help of Jim Shepherd.

Always trust the advice of a man holding a wooden squirrel. Photo courtesy of squirrel hunter extraordinaire Jim Shepherd.

Always trust the advice of a man holding a wooden squirrel. Photo courtesy of squirrel hunter extraordinaire Jim Shepherd.

Jim took part in the recent SquirrelMaster Classic and has the coveted wooden squirrel to prove it. So he’s basically a Professional Hunter (a ‘PH’ in the vernacular) when it comes to eradicating the dreaded Sciurus carolinensis.

When I explained to him my dire predicament, how I was surrounded by the little gray rodents and about to be overrun, he explained that the air rifle is the preferred tool of the professional. Like I said, he’s got the wooden squirrel and I never argue with a man who’s earned the famed wooden squirrel.Armed with a plan and the advice of an experienced expert, all that’s left for me to successfully save my house and my life (because you know they’re planning to take me in my sleep once they break through the inner walls) is to literally arm myself with a state of the art air rifle.

Unfortunately, I do not own an air rifle, and to make matters worse, I cannot leave my house to search one out for fear of being attacked by the surrounding army of squirrels. I am a prisoner in my own squirrel infested home.

If only there were somebody who could help. If only there were somebody who could hear my desperate pleas and could send me the perfect tool to fight this life or death battle. If only somebody could equip me with an air rifle so I could go mano a squirrelo with my mortal enemy. If only….

Wait. What’s that distant noise? It…it…it sounds like the rumbling of a delivery truck.

Could it be? Have my prayers been answered?

– Paul Erhardt, Editor, the Outdoor Wire Digital Network

Squirrelpocalypse first appeared in the Monday, April 7 edition of The Shooting Wire. It is republished here with permission.

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