*Updated to add another critter.
My friend Michele, who has just deleted her blog, so you don't get to know how wonderful she is, commented in this post that I should make a list of all the critters that have been captured at our house.
The very best critter catcher I have ever come across is my 10 year old son. If he puts his mind to it, he can sneak up on and catch almost anything.
Here is a partial list of wild critters he has caught: (I am sure I have forgotten some.)
a tree frog (This was the most beautiful bright green with suction pad toes. Bubba used to wear his swim goggles around and let it cling to the plastic front.)
a few birds
tons of toads
lots of lizards
*a tarantula as big as my hand (How could I forget about that darling little bundle of cuteness? We kept him for a few weeks and were fascinated to watch him with his prey.)
He usually accomplishes this with his bare hands, but every now and then, as in the case of the squirrel, he will develop some elaborate plot and employ the use of nets, traps, strings, etc.
Whenever any of the girls would like something caught, they always call for their Bubba. In most cases, we have observed the animal for a while, then let it go. We have learned that we are not very successful at keeping birds alive. So, now we have a catch and release policy.
Here is Bubba and 2 sisters (Can you guess which one had recently decided to cut her own hair?) with a fledgling blue jay that he caught and took care of for 2 weeks. That bird seemed to love him. It would perch on his shoulder or hop along behind him while he walked around the yard. It would eat grubs and berries Bubba found and fed him. He named it Sky and was devastated one day when we returned from a fishing trip to find it had suddenly and mysteriously died.
We still fancy that we see Sky's parents coming and going from the nest where we believe Sky hatched, and we remember that sweet little bird often.
*I'm sorry for the grainy quality of this photo. I scanned it from a snapshot that was a couple of years old.