The Beasts of Stanley Park

At the 2014 Halloween Train, I happened to learn about squirrels. There was a booth operated by the Stanley Park Ecology Society. It was there that I learned that in the park are northern flying squirrels. I was shocked because I’d never heard of these before. And, there’s a reason. You are as likely to see one of these as you are a magical pixie. This is because they are nocturnal and live only in the high canopy.

But of course it’s sad there are no moose in the park because then you could have more Rocky and Bullwinkle jokes.

There are black and grey squirrels in the park. They are introduced species from back east. Black squirrels are likely from Ontario and I was told that Stanley Park has the bill of lading from the late 19th century for the delivery of squirrels as a gift to the City of Vancouver. If you’ve ever been hunted down and mugged for food by a black squirrel in Queens Park in Toronto you’ll know that was a bad idea.

Other critters in the park include bats, coyotes, beavers, eagles, herons, owls and raccoons.

Don’t feed any of them, particularly the raccoons. At the speed they adapt, I’m expecting them to be stealing cars soon.

Now, if they’d only introduce moose to Stanley Park. Bad idea though. Ask Newfoundland drivers how well introducing the moose worked.

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