We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
- The Eastern Chipmunk supposedly hibernates, but I see them venture out on warmer winter days in the 40s (F). Their extensive burrows have bathrooms and food storage rooms. We have lots of them around probably because we have few big snakes here. Yes, they take bites out of my tomatoes but I like the little buggers.
- What is the home range of the Common Crow? It depends on whether they live in urban, suburban, agricultural, forest, or plains habitats. Crows are adaptive. According to one study, their home turf in urban areas can be under a half square mile, and in more open areas up to 15 square miles. Crow tribes' home turfs overlap somewhat, and many tribes often travel to share winter roosts.
When they want to, they will wander far from their home turf but might run into trouble from other Crow tribes defending their turf.
You might be interested to know that in French a chipmunk is un tamia which comes from their genus Tamias, the Greek word for steward or housekeeper, a nod to their formidable food storage and underground household management!
We also say un tamia rayé (striped chipmunk) and un suisse (literally Swiss - I think because the stripes are supposed to be like the uniforms of the Swiss Guards in the Vatican).
To your point about the Chipmunk, here in the Poconos we have many, many of these adorable creatures. One thing that I have noticed this year, that differs from year's past, is that they aren't really hibernating at all. I have seen them almost everyday. While I delight in their company during these bleak winter months, just curious as to why? Our weather has been somewhat mild at times to extremely bitter, and yet to them this winter seems to go unnoticed.
As far as the Crows, some of the smartest creatures in the forest. I always throw out my table scraps to them on the same "feeding rock", and then I call, or caw, to them. They usually arrive within minutes. My husband is quite amused by this. He thinks I'm crazy.
When I go to the Grand Canyon (South Rim) I stay in the campground. I like to hike in the morning and relax the rest of the day. Spend my time reading or cooking over the fire. The campground there is the home to a "murder" of Ravens. These ravens are ravenous and relentless and will open boxes, coolers and even get into tents. I watch them, sometimes I get to save some fellow campers stuff but typically I don't catch them in the act. But their language is complex. One raven will land nearby and spot something and perhaps "caw" to attract his fellow ravens. But they also communicate using clicks and hollow sounding clucks and even tonal variations that seem to be saying so much more than "I found some food". I ponder and wonder if they aren't telling their fellow ravens that "here is that guy who stopped us from eating that loaf of bread yesterday". Or maybe "here is some food but there is a human here I will watch and let you know when he falls asleep".
When I was 12 years old I would hang around the golf course pro shop and hire out as a caddy. Good money back in the 50's. One day a crow landed at the table of the man I had just followed through 18 holes and took his prized pocket knife. The crow went to the roof of the one story club house and seemed to deposit the knife in the gutter area. I volunteered to get a ladder and return the pocket knife - which I did. But once up there where I could see into the gutter I found all kind of plunder from coins to bottle caps and brought it all down with me. I was rewarded with a dollar bill which in 1955 was a lot of money for me.
Crows and Ravens have fascinated me ever since. Out West, according to an ornithologist friend the difference between a crow and a raven is altitude and open fields. That is above 4000' it will be a raven "except" those cases where there is a farmers field and then it is likely a crow.
Over 40 years ago I used to have a crow that hung out in a group, that would beat on the sliding glass door every morning until I threw out something for them to eat. It did that for months and then never came again. Who knows what is in a crows mind, perhaps it found a better diner.