News / USA

    Squirrels Feast in Unattended White House Garden

    A squirrel is seen eating vegetables from the White House Garden (Via @<a href="https://twitter.com/ObamaFoodorama/status/390174493768810496/photo/1">ObamaFoodorama</a>)
    A squirrel is seen eating vegetables from the White House Garden (Via @<a href="https://twitter.com/ObamaFoodorama/status/390174493768810496/photo/1">ObamaFoodorama</a>)

    Related Articles

    Video Urban Farms Bloom in Concrete Desert

    Eco City Farm grows fresh produce among strip malls, car repair shops and fast food marts

    Growing Controversy Over GMO Bananas in Uganda

    Kampala poised to introduce genetically modified organisms as parliament considers bill to regulate them
    While furloughed government employees and others are doing some belt-tightening during the U.S. government shutdown, one group in Washington has been reaping huge benefits.

    The squirrels living around the White House are feasting on First Lady Michelle Obama’s garden, which was left largely unattended because the maintenance staff has been furloughed.

    According to the Obama Foodorama, a blog that serves as an unofficial “archive of record about Obama Administration food and nutrition initiatives,” weeds are starting to infest the once well-manicured garden and vegetables are falling off the plants and rotting on the ground

    The beneficiaries of all of this? The White House squirrels.

    According to Eddie Gehman Kohan, the founder of the blog, the squirrels have become more aggressive with the absence of caretakers. “The squirrels are always a problem in the garden, eating the berry crop in the summer months,” she wrote in an October 11 blog post. “But they're now kids in a candy store, gorging themselves.”

    Another intruder taking advantage of the unguarded garden is a fox, Kohan reported.

    “The fox is apparently entrenched, according to my sources, since Park Service gave up on trying to catch him/her when shutdown began,” she wrote in an email.  “I have not personally seen him or her, however.  [I] have seen a new hawk on grounds by garden, which I never saw prior to the shutdown.”

    While Kohan can’t put a dollar value on the 30 different kinds of organic vegetables in the garden that are going to waste, she did say the 1,500 square foot garden is “in the midst of high production with both late summer and cool season vegetables, and there is a lot of food in there.”

    Kohan said she’d asked the White House if volunteers from area food banks could come in and harvest some of the wasting food, but she said she’d gotten no response.

    You May Like

    Chechen Suspected in Istanbul Attack, but Questions Remain

    Turkish sources say North Caucasus militants involved in bombing at Ataturk airport, but name of at least one alleged attacker raises doubts

    With Johnson Out, Can a New ‘Margaret Thatcher’ Save Britain?

    Contest to replace David Cameron as Britain’s prime minister started in earnest Thursday with top candidates outlining strategy to deal with Brexit fallout

    US Finds Progress Slow Against Human Trafficking in Africa

    Africa continues to be a major source and destination for human trafficking of all kinds -- from forced labor to sexual slavery, says State Department report

    This forum has been closed.
    Comment Sorting
    Comments
         
    by: david5300 from: ohio
    October 19, 2013 8:33 PM
    People can not eat the vegetables or what ever else grows there because the Carter administration backfilled the area with sludge that was found to have come from a Toxic Dump. So not only will you get your daily requirement of iron and manganese but also lead, mercury and PCB's

    by: Corny from: USA
    October 17, 2013 10:56 PM
    Why are the squirrels in the White House garden? The nuts are in the House of Representatives.

    by: InDC from: DC
    October 17, 2013 10:12 AM
    The squirrels are behind the shutdown so they could eat all of the garden vegetables. It's a liberal conspiracy against the Republicans! Just joking. At least some of the food is being consumed.

    I think they should give the vegetables to food banks or food kitchens to prepare nutritious meals. People are struggling all over the country and I don't feel like the nation's capital should waste things other people can use.

    by: Abel Ogah from: Oju Benue state Nigeria
    October 17, 2013 7:49 AM
    these animals will definitely fast and pray for shutdowns to roll in often.

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Clinton Leads Trump, But Many Voters Don't Like Eitheri
    X
    Jim Malone
    June 29, 2016 6:16 PM
    In the U.S. presidential race, most recent polls show Democrat Hillary Clinton with a steady lead over Republican Donald Trump as both presumptive party nominees prepare for their party conventions next month. Trump’s disapproval ratings have risen in some recent surveys, but Clinton also suffers from high negative ratings, suggesting both candidates have a lot of work to do to improve their images before the November election. VOA National correspondent Jim Malone has more from Washington.
    Video

    Video Clinton Leads Trump, But Many Voters Don't Like Either

    In the U.S. presidential race, most recent polls show Democrat Hillary Clinton with a steady lead over Republican Donald Trump as both presumptive party nominees prepare for their party conventions next month. Trump’s disapproval ratings have risen in some recent surveys, but Clinton also suffers from high negative ratings, suggesting both candidates have a lot of work to do to improve their images before the November election. VOA National correspondent Jim Malone has more from Washington.
    Video

    Video Slow Rebuilding Amid Boko Haram Destruction in Nigeria’s Northeast

    Military operations have chased Boko Haram out of towns and cities in Nigeria’s northeast since early last year. But it is only recently that people have begun returning to their homes in Adamawa state, near the border with Cameroon, to try to rebuild their lives. For VOA, Chris Stein traveled to the area and has this report.
    Video

    Video New US Ambassador to Somalia Faces Heavy Challenges

    The new U.S. envoy to Somalia, who was sworn into office Monday, will be the first American ambassador to that nation in 25 years. He will take up his post as Somalia faces a number of crucial issues, including insecurity, an upcoming election, and the potential closure of the Dadaab refugee camp in Kenya. VOA’s Jill Craig asked Somalis living in Kenya’s capital city Nairobi how they feel about the U.S. finally installing a new ambassador.
    Video

    Video At National Zoo, Captivating Animal Sculptures Illustrate Tragedy of Ocean Pollution

    The National Zoo in Washington, D.C., is home to about 1,800 animals, representing 300 species. But throughout the summer, visitors can also see other kinds of creatures there. They are larger-than-life animal sculptures that speak volumes about a global issue — the massive plastic pollution in our oceans. VOA's June Soh takes us to the zoo's special exhibit, called Washed Ashore: Art to Save the Sea.
    Video

    Video Baghdad Bikers Defy War with a Roar

    Baghdad is a city of contradictions. War is a constant. Explosions and kidnappings are part of daily life. But the Iraqi capital remains a thriving city, even if a little beat up. VOA's Sharon Behn reports on how some in Baghdad are defying the stereotype of a nation at war by pursuing a lifestyle known for its iconic symbols of rebellion: motorbikes, leather jackets and roaring engines.
    Video

    Video Melting Pot of Immigrants Working to Restore US Capitol Dome

    The American Iron Works company is one of the firms working to renovate the iconic U.S. Capitol Dome. The company employs immigrants of many different cultural and national backgrounds. VOA’s Arman Tarjimanyan has more.
    Video

    Video Testing Bamboo as Building Material

    For thousands of years various species of bamboo - one of the world's most versatile plants - have been used for diverse purposes ranging from food and medicine to textiles and construction. But its use on a large scale is hampered because it's not manufactured to specific standards but grown in the ground. A University of Pittsburgh professor is on track to changing that. VOA’s George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Orphanage in Iraqi City Houses Kids Who Lost their Parents to Attacks by IS

    An orphanage in Iraqi Kurdistan has become home to scores of Yazidi children who lost their parents after Islamic State militants took over Sinjar in Iraq’s Nineveh Province in 2014. Iraqi Kurdish forces backed by the U.S. airstrikes have since recaptured Sinjar but the need for the care provided by the orphanage continues. VOA’s Kawa Omar filed this report narrated by Rob Raffaele.
    Video

    Video Re-Opening Old Wounds in a Bullet-Riddled Cultural Landmark

    A cultural landmark before Lebanon’s civil war transformed it into a nest of snipers, Beirut’s ‘Yellow House’ is once again set to play a crucial role in the city.  Built in a neo-Ottoman style in the 1920s, in September it is set to be re-opened as a ‘memory museum’ - its bullet-riddled walls and bunkered positions overlooking the city’s notorious ‘Green Line’ maintained for posterity. John Owens reports from Beirut.
    Video

    Video Brexit Resounds in US Presidential Contest

    Britain’s decision to leave the European Union is resounding in America’s presidential race. As VOA’s Michael Bowman reports, Republican presumptive nominee Donald Trump sees Britain’s move as an affirmation of his campaign’s core messages, while Democrat Hillary Clinton sees the episode as further evidence that Trump is unfit to be president.
    Video

    Video NASA Juno Spacecraft, Nearing Jupiter, to Shed Light on Gas Giant

    After a five-year journey, the spacecraft Juno is nearing its destination, the giant planet Jupiter, where it will enter orbit and start sending data back July 4th. As Mike O'Sullivan reports from Pasadena, California, the craft will pierce the veil of Jupiter's dense cloud cover to reveal its mysteries.
    Video

    Video Orlando Shooting Changes Debate on Gun Control

    It’s been nearly two weeks since the largest mass shooting ever in the United States. Despite public calls for tighter gun control laws, Congress is at an impasse. Democratic lawmakers resorted to a 1960s civil rights tactic to portray their frustration. VOA’s Carolyn Presutti explains how the Orlando, Florida shooting is changing the debate.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora