Posts Tagged "rodent"

Squirrel Wars 2016 Have Begun

Dear Kid,

Dad is at it again.

Or perhaps I should say the squirrels are at it again.

Either way, someone is at it, and “it” involves birdseed and removing tree limbs.

Dad was convinced that the squirrels couldn’t reach the birdfeeder, or that the one clever squirrel had reached the end of his time here on planet earth and was stalking birdfeeders in squirrel heaven.

And so he (Dad) happily went about his business.

Until I refilled the birdfeeders and Dad happened to look outside.

(Insert stabbing music from Psycho.)

Squirrel Wars 2016 Have Begun. Dad is --once again -- trying to keep the rodents off the birdfeeders. DearKidLoveMomWhat followed next was something out of a scene from Caddy Shack. A scene that hit the cutting room floor, but a scene nonetheless.

Dad raced out of the house, shouting at the squirrel to mind his (the squirrel’s) own species, and inviting plagues of curses upon the house of said rodent. The threat of his lineage being cursed didn’t seem to upset the squirrel in the least. The threat of a crazy man descending upon him waving a cell phone made him reconsider hanging out on the birdfeeder.

Once the birdfeeder was squirrel-free (temporarily), Dad went about assessing the situation to make it squirrel-free (permanently).

Saws, loppers, dynamite, drones, schematics, ladders, a laser pointer, and eye of newt were all involved.

Squirrel Plotting to Get Birdseed Squirrel Wars 2016 Have Begun. Dad is --once again -- trying to keep the rodents off the birdfeeders. DearKidLoveMomIn short, one of the nearby trees had its bangs trimmed. And the squirrels seem unable (or unwilling) to leap from the branches to the birdfeeders.

But the hand shears are still on the porch so that Dad can race out and prune away if the need should arise.

Perhaps this should be an Olympic sport.

Love, Mom

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World’s Largest What?? Not Every Animal Should Be a Pet

Dear Kid,

We’ve discovered a new program. By “we” I mean Pi and me, and by “new program” I mean World’s Largest Pets on Animal Planet.

I thought World’s Largest Pets would be things like pet hippos or elephants. Pi thought we’d be watching Great Danes.

Instead, we found ourselves watching a HUGE Burmese Python, a capybara, a big rat, and wolfhounds.

When I say leave me alone, I mean LEAVE ME ALONE! DearKidLoveMom.comThe python probably should have been in a zoo or left in the wild. It was big huge enormous. And by “enormous” I mean the size of Montana. The state, not the Hannah. According to the show, it was one of the largest snakes in England. And it was not happy about going to the vet for a checkup. One-of-the-largest-snakes-in-England knows how to make its displeasure known.

The capybara was adorable. His owner spends more on food for him than on food for herself. She got him a swimming pool. She gives him full run of the house even though one of a capybara’s favorite things to do is roll around in the mud. We never found out how he feels about veterinarians.

Capybaras as pets? Some people think so. DearKidLoveMom.comThe wolfhounds were cuter than cute if a 7 foot dog can be called cute. (I have no trouble calling a dog of any size a cute puppy.) The couple in the profile breed wolfhounds and they are very careful about who they give puppies to. If the puppy-adopter-to-be doesn’t fit with their notion of how a puppy-adopter-to-be should interact with the adult wolfhounds, the p-a-t-b goes home without a puppy.

Yes, I skipped the rat. I think it was a rat. I’m really not sure because there was big discussion about whether our Puppy should be getting up off his favorite pillow and going for a walk. Dad was in favor of the walk before the rain began; Puppy was in favor of sleeping. Guess who won?

Love, Mom

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Groundhog Day and My Solution to the Frozen Vortex of Winter

Groundhog Day and My Solution to the Frozen Vortex of Winter DearKidLoveMom.comDear Kid,

Sunday is Groundhog Day. Punxsutawney Phil will be ceremoniously yanked from his burrow at 7:20 am to prognosticate weather-wise.

My prediction: Phil will say it’s cold and he’d prefer to have someone bring him breakfast in bed.

My Other Prediction: You will not be up to see the event live.

Tradition says that if Phil sees his shadow (of which he is presumably terrified) he will turn tail and hide, thus bringing six more weeks of winter. If he doesn’t see his shadow, spring is around the corner.

My solution: I say blindfold the darn rodent if there is even a hint of shadow-casting sunshine.

The first Groundhog Day at Gobbler’s Knob in Punxsutawney was February 2, 1887. But it turns out the concept of non-meteorologists predicting the weather predates Punx Phil by a lot (that’s the technical measure).

Waaay back, clergy would bless and distribute candles for winter on Candlemas. The candles indicated how long and cold the winter would be.

The German concept held that hedgehogs could predict the weather.

In the US, we believe in the Farmer’s Almanac for reliable weather forecasting. More reliable than the TV weather people, anyway.

Five Fun Facts About Groundhogs

1. Groundhogs = woodchucks = Marmota monax

2. Groundhogs typically live 6 to 8 years.

3. They typically weigh 12 to 15 pounds. A chubby 12 to 15 pounds (at least pre-hibernation).

4. They whistle when they’re frightened or looking for a mate. Those may be the same thing.

5. Groundhogs hibernate beginning in late fall and ending sometime in March. Which probably explains why they are grumpy about being woken up February 2nd just to humor a bunch of crazy humans.

Punxsutawney people take groundhog-ness very seriously. There is much celebration (about three days of festivities) and probably groundhog themed souvenirs.

Wonder if I can talk Dad into going to Punxsutawney next year…?

Love, Mom

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