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Boreal Community Media

Photo of the week with local photographer Paul Sundberg: Pine Marten

Dec 21, 2023 09:10AM ● By Content Editor

By Paul Sundberg - Boreal Community Media - December 21, 2023

  Photo used with permission by Paul Sundberg

As I was coming home after photographing a sunrise, I encountered a marten crossing our driveway. Upon seeing me it climbed up a red pine curling up on one of the top branches. It was pretty much hidden from view. I sat in the car and waited to see if it would come down. 

Soon a red squirrel started up the same pine. The inquisitive squirrel kept going higher in the tree until it was less than twelve inches from the marten. I thought for sure the squirrel was toast. When it realized this clump was a marten the squirrel shrieked as loud as I have ever heard a squirrel scream and dropped out of the tree in about two seconds. To my surprise, the marten didn’t attack. This was one lucky squirrel. 

After about thirty more minutes the marten moved out to the end of the branch. There were two squirrels still on the ground chattering. It slowly climbed down the tree still watching for the squirrels. It rounded the tree and took off into the woods. I didn’t see if it got any squirrels or not but the next day, I noticed one of our red squirrels was missing most of its tail.

To see more of Paul's photos, visit his website here. 

To learn more about Paul, read our exclusive 'Meet Your Cook County Neighbor' interview with him here. 

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