As I was pulling a restanque wall down with the digger, bringing down a rush of rocks and boulders in preparation to re-build it back up, something out of place caught my eye. This little ground squirrel was lying among the rubble, spread-eagled on its back, soft white stomach a total contrast to the stones all round.
It looked alive, but was hardly moving, so it was either completely asleep or had been crushed by the tumbling stones. We found a small hole where it had been hibernating in the old wall till it was rudely disturbed by the digger bucket and fell rolling onto the rubble.
We could see no signs of its fur having been squashed and tried to give it a little warm milk from a pipette, but it was hardly awake. It squeaked several times, as if threatening to wake up, so we put it on a bed of tissue paper in the inevitable shoe box, covered it with leaves and put the box in the barn.
In a few days time when it’s got over the shock, we’ll go and see if it’s still alive.
… 22 February: it is alive! At least, it’s gone from its box in the barn, which shows no sign of being attacked by anything, so we assume the squirrel is ok.