Parents nuts about squirrel signs

A sign outside Peter Cooper Village’s Playground 2 (Photo by Maria Rocha-Buschel)

By Maya Rader

Last week, signs appeared on five of Stuyvesant Town/Peter Cooper Village’s playgrounds telling residents not to feed squirrels within 50 feet of the playgrounds.

Since it was parents who’d been pushing for the signage, not surprisingly several parents T&V spoke with this week almost all agreed putting them up was a good idea.

At Playground 2 in Peter Cooper Village, parent Jay Smith said, “I think understanding that they’re not pets and they’re wild animals is probably the first thing.”

Neighbor Andy Ryan said he’s seen squirrels climb into strollers looking for food.

At the Stuy Town clock tower playground, parent Julie Lee said, “The squirrels here are very aggressive, so it makes sense (to have signs).”

Hildy Spak weighed in that squirrels were less aggressive where she grew up.

Noting all the feeders in ST/PCV, she continued, “It’s probably best to let them survive on their own.”

Asked for his thoughts, Craig Spak agreed that squirrels should not be fed near playgrounds, but he took a slightly different standpoint on the signs.

“I don’t think they need signs because anyone with half a brain would know if you get too close to a squirrel, it bites you and the squirrel might be rabid.”

He continued, “People shouldn’t need a sign to tell you not to feed a squirrel.”

4 thoughts on “Parents nuts about squirrel signs

  1. Is it permitted to feed the bronze squirrel statues that adorn the entrances. Is this constitutional towards the squirrels.

  2. This squirrel hysteria is absurd. Per the CDC: “Small mammals such as squirrels, rats, mice, hamsters, guinea pigs, gerbils, chipmunks, rabbits, and hares are almost never found to be infected with rabies and have not been known to cause rabies among humans in the United States.” Who’s got “half a brain” here? I have never seen an aggressive squirrel in ST or anywhere else for that matter. Then again, I don’t scream, wave my hands in an aggressive manner or stamp my feet at them either as some have reported doing. Squirrels have walked up to me looking for food. I say, “Sorry”, and go on my way. I’ve never been chased by one or attacked. I did have one jump in my lap at Mad. Sq. Pk. once like a cat would. It didn’t bite me. They’re not bears; relax. Respect them and they’ll respect you. Stop teaching your kids to be afraid of the little wildlife we have in NYC.

  3. This is just ridiculous pandering to a small group of clueless newcomers. The squirrels always have, and will continue to, forage for food bits around (or in) strollers regardless of whether there’s a sign up.

    Instead of complaining to management, they should have asked someone who’s lived here a while for the answer. It’s…tupperware.

  4. NO ONE should be feeding the squirrels whatsoever in Stuy town or anywhere. Feeding squirrels , the food brings RATS and secondly it isn’t good for the squirrels. Stuy town has the most ridiculously aggresive squirrels ever. STUY TOWN IS GOING TO BECOME ONE BIG SIGN. The signs inside the buidling is starting to look like public housing. This new management team has made this place look so bad with all the signs.

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