Serendipity Of The Black Squirrel

We took up residence near this little guy in Freehold, NJ. Having never seen a black squirrel before, and being naturally inquisitive, I Googled “black squirrel” to see if they are the same creature as the grey ones we’re more used to seeing (they are). But as luck would have it, the second link on the Google page was to the Black Squirrel Bar in Washington, DC, our very next stop. Even more fortunate, the Black Squirrel is just a couple blocks away from our favorite Korean restaurant, Mandu, where we had already planned to meet a friend for dinner. Another sign? Without question.

The Black Squirrel calls itself a “gastro pub,” which I guess is supposed to mean they have good food. We didn’t go there to eat, but we did sample a calamari and vegetable appetizer dipped in tempura batter and served with chipotle tartar sauce. It was a little salty, but certainly better than the standard pub grub. They also claim to serve Belgium’s best wheat beer, (it’s not). Fortunately, they have plenty of other options on the menu, including some fantastic beers made by Great Lakes Brewery in Cleveland, Ohio. We’d never heard of Great Lakes before, but a helpful bartender introduced us to them, and now we’ve added another place to stop on our to-do list.

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51 Comments on “Serendipity Of The Black Squirrel”

  1. Grant October 13, 2010 at 4:19 pm #

    Now do you remember what I said about letting the road guide your travels? This is a perfect example. And guess what – we have black squirrels upstate. Have fun you two…


  2. RDoug August 3, 2012 at 11:41 pm #

    That’s one cute squirrel. I’ve never seen a black one before.


  3. highheelsandpinkglitter August 8, 2012 at 3:59 pm #

    Oh so sweet – I’ve never seen a black squirrel either and your photo is quite beautiful.


  4. Jennings August 10, 2012 at 11:29 am #

    Cute squirrel, and you’ve gotta love it leading you to a pub! That one should be pet!


    • Brian August 10, 2012 at 12:37 pm #

      Ha. Love it. Or maybe the lead in a “children’s” book: Chauncey, the drunken squirrel.


  5. imagesbytdashfield August 10, 2012 at 11:43 am #

    I first saw one in Maryland and thought the poor thing had fallen into some paint.


  6. 24/7 in France August 11, 2012 at 8:22 am #

    Very, very cute! Thanks for visiting my blog.


  7. Sinclair Adam August 13, 2012 at 8:40 pm #

    Actually black and grey squirrels are known for their damage to farm crops, especially corn and wheat. They were destructive over a wide area during the colonial period. Pioneer farmers in southwestern Pa frequently had almost the whole of their corn crops destroyed by squirrels and raccoons. They traveled in armies numbering many thousands, devastating all grain fields in their line of march. Unlike other wildlife, squirrels seemed to increase, rather than decrease, after settlement began. The PA General Assembly offered a bounty of 3 pence per head. In 1749, the sum of 8,000 pounds in Pa currency was expended as bounty on more than 640,000 squirrels. In 1837, Octavius Hastings produced over 300 black and gray squirrels, which he had shot within 4 miles of Meadville, PA. About 95% were jet black. (Pennsylvania Agriculture and Country Life, 1640 – 1840, by Stevenson Whitcomb Fletcher, 1950)


    • bucketdave August 20, 2012 at 9:32 am #

      That’s good research Sinclair. Thanks for sharing.


    • softbodysweethearts September 4, 2012 at 9:52 pm #

      Wow, Sinclair, you know your stuff. I’ve seen a couple of black squirrels before and if I ever see one again, Squirrel Burgers!!!


  8. restlessjo August 14, 2012 at 2:57 am #

    Yes, but is it? (related, I mean) Very sweet but I like the red ones best.


  9. sued51 August 15, 2012 at 9:27 am #

    The only time I saw a black squirrel was in Montreal…so I thought it was a Canadian thing. 🙂
    Love how you went with the flow…


    • Brian August 15, 2012 at 4:11 pm #

      Never look serendipity in the mouth . . . or something like that. 🙂


  10. hungryheart62 August 17, 2012 at 4:44 am #

    Grey squirrels were introduced over here (UK) and have decimated our population of red quarrels that survive in only a few remote regions. They are now considered vermin here or as we call them bushy tailed rats. That doesn’t stop us thinking they are cute though, and I’d rather have them than real rats in our roof!!


  11. jgadrin August 17, 2012 at 4:23 pm #

    you can find black squirrels in nyc in an area called stuyvesant town on the east side of manhattan. i was surprised to discover them. we moved below stuyvesant town to the lower east side neighborhood and last spring our neighbor spotted a black squirrel! nice to know they can be found in nj too.


  12. bucketdave August 20, 2012 at 9:33 am #

    Definitely a sign. On an unrelated note, though, what did you eat at the Korean restaurant?


  13. friendlytm August 21, 2012 at 1:21 am #

    Thank you for visiting my Cambodia trip. I like your blog. Happy traveling!


  14. Rachel and Paul August 21, 2012 at 8:28 pm #

    Thanks for liking our Southeast Asia blog.

    Squirrels around here are the giant red flying kind!


    • Brian August 23, 2012 at 7:15 pm #

      Looking forward to the giant flying red squirrels when we get out that way.


  15. Another Perspective Photography August 21, 2012 at 11:35 pm #

    for sure. If you see an animal AND find out there’s a bar named after it… it’s like God himself telling you that you should relax and enjoy a pint!


    • Brian August 23, 2012 at 7:14 pm #

      If you ever need another reason to relax ans enjoy a pint, it’s a good a one as any. 🙂


  16. Laurie August 26, 2012 at 9:43 am #

    Marysville, Kansas is also known for its black squirrels.


  17. Liana August 26, 2012 at 5:34 pm #

    Very nice to have you over at my blog, Brian! Regarding black squirrels, I worked one summer during college on a small island in the river where Lake Huron and Lake Erie met between Ontario, Canada and Michigan. The place was thick with black squirrels. Especially noteworthy was the lack of any on either mainland. I’ve kept my eyes out for them ever since and love seeing them–thanks for sharing!


  18. RobynG August 27, 2012 at 6:33 pm #

    Thanks for visiting my blog today and liking “The Lighthouse”. I’m so glad your visit brought me to your blog. Fantastic post above. Can’t wait to learn more about your adventures. Please stop by again soon!


  19. sandrabranum August 27, 2012 at 6:46 pm #

    Thanks for stopping by my blog. I look forward to more of your posts and photos. Regards.


  20. garris August 29, 2012 at 12:45 am #

    Boy, that sure makes fodder for some crazy jokes!


  21. Carolyn Lane August 31, 2012 at 5:04 am #

    Serendipity comes to people who are alert to see the connections. I like the way you “notice” – and the way your “liking” my blog lead me to your Seven Lessons … to which a hearty hear-hear!


  22. Brook September 4, 2012 at 7:33 pm #

    Beautiful black squirrel…had not seen one until now. *Thank you.* *And thank you for the “like” at my blog:)


  23. massielmancebo September 6, 2012 at 7:10 pm #

    What’s even stranger to me is the fact that the first time I saw a completely white squirrel was precisely in front of the white house in Washington D.C.


  24. rgoldfarb September 7, 2012 at 9:55 am #

    I worked in Princeton, NJ for four years and LOVED seeing the black squirrels around town. They’re so unique and have been embraced by the PU community. My friends would always get scared by them…I’d call them racist and push them closer to the squirrels. 😉


  25. Airstream Family September 8, 2012 at 4:34 pm #

    The closest we’ve got to squirrels are pesky possums! I hope you’re including Australia on your world adventure.

    Happy traveling. I look forward to eating more of your blog. xx


  26. Doctor Comics September 8, 2012 at 9:31 pm #

    Thanks for reading my blog and liking my post!


  27. dramaqueenconfession September 12, 2012 at 10:20 am #

    amazing, never heard of a black squirrel, great picture


  28. Franki Kohler September 14, 2012 at 6:27 pm #

    I’ve never seen one either! They look like the rich relative of the brown squirrel we have. You know, all dressed up in black.


  29. earthriderjudyberman September 15, 2012 at 10:31 am #

    This might be the first time I’ve seen a black squirrel. We have seen plenty of grey ones, brown ones and red ones. Thank you for sharing, Brian and Shannon.


  30. Lillie September 18, 2012 at 4:13 am #

    I loved seeing the ‘basement squirrel’ in this post. I can’t believe I’ve never seen one before in my travels. I’ll have to watch out for them. Thanks for the ‘like’ on my blog post today. Looking forward to checking out more of your blog…


  31. backthewaywecame September 20, 2012 at 6:31 am #

    Your Freshly Pressed award is WAY awesome. You certainly deserve it (have only just seen it). Congrats.


  32. Sandy Green September 21, 2012 at 12:22 pm #

    There is a community of black squirrels in Princeton, too. I saw some in my neighborhood near Washington, DC and blogged about them here. Thanks for visiting my blog!


  33. ranu802 September 21, 2012 at 2:21 pm #

    I ‘m glad to know there are black squirrels also.I have only ever seen grey ones.I like your picture of the black squirrel.Thanks for visiting my blog.


  34. Memory Catcher September 24, 2012 at 12:08 pm #

    Nice story. I was not aware of black squirrels. Thanks for reading my blog!


  35. miltonjohns September 24, 2012 at 3:05 pm #

    A first for everything. Never seen a black squirrel before. A cute little chap.


  36. indrafortney October 4, 2012 at 10:43 pm #

    Thanks for checking out my blog! Happy travels


  37. E October 10, 2012 at 12:50 pm #

    Whats weird is a long time ago, when I was little I was in New York and I fed a black squirrel some peanuts, nice little reminder, I like it!


  38. heavenhappens October 14, 2012 at 3:34 pm #

    Wow what an exciting life you lead x I do envy you your travels! Enjoy every minute and post bits for us housebound armchair travellers to enjoy!!


  39. elmdriveimages November 8, 2012 at 12:11 pm #

    Brian: Great shot! Sure is a good looking squirrel…In Illinois, the city of Olny is noted for both black and white squirrels. Black squirrels have started showing up in the Peoria area the past few years. Thanks for the, “Like.” Hope you stop by again. I will!


  40. June 11, 2018 at 4:21 pm #

    Great photo! the Choctaws have a legend that says total eclipse of the sun is when a black squirrel is eating the sun. I would love to use your photo of this squirrel when telling the story. Would you give me permission?



  1. American Safari | Everywhere Once - January 30, 2012

    […] Squirrel captured our attention with their surprising variety: we saw grey ones, red ones, black ones, large ones, and these diminutive ones that inhabit the Rocky Mountains. One thing they all had in […]


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