Little Pee Dee’s Gray Ghosts

Heritage Preserve Complex offers excellent opportunities for squirrel hunters in tracts along the river.

In what was once a swamp, a hunter sneaked along, making his way around a greenbriar tangle. The scratching of a dried leaf by the nail-hard, needle-sharp, black tip of a thorn alerted a gray squirrel. He probably couldn’t see the hunter, who wore a blaze orange jacket with a black camouflage pattern, but something made him scramble for cover, making an almost inaudible chirring sound.

Basil Watts sat with his back against a tree, watching a clearing among giant cypress, blackgum and laurel oak trees. The drought of 2007 had changed things quite a bit from the previous year. What had been a flooded beaver pond filled to overflowing had become an open forest.

“There are acorns everywhere,” Watts said. “But you have to find places where the squirrels have been cutting shells. There are lots of deer here, too. A deer crunches up the shells and spits them out. But you can see places on acorn shells where squirrels have gnawed them.”Click here to read more on Little Pee Dee’s Gray Ghosts

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About Mike Marsh 339 Articles
Mike Marsh is a freelance outdoor writer in Wilmington, N.C. His latest book, Fishing North Carolina, and other titles, are available at

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