I’ve encountered many interesting animals, reptiles and birds, living in my rural area. However, I thought we all knew our place, a balancing act to live in harmony. But lately things have changed. During the night a phantom critter, or critters, have been invading my vegetable garden. Even though it’s secured by a mesh fence it has found a way in (no breaking or entering noted) and instead of eating, let’s say, one tomato, I’ll find several on the ground that have been pulled of the vine with only one bite out of it. My heart sinks every morning I see my bounty laying there. Why can’t this creature just eat an entire tomato and be done with it? Last year my husband planted five tomato bushes and I waited in anticipation for those home grown goodies to ripen so I could create all the delicious dishes I had planned, and ended up with maybe a dozen, which led me to begging my friend to share some of her crop.
The second creature, known as the gopher, has come to town and torn up our lawn. Again these critters come out during the night, leaving hideous mounds of dirt, and a patchwork mess once knocked down.
We have lived in this house for seven years and maybe it’s because we experienced a drought in the first five that we didn’t get much action. However, the last few years of rain seemed to change everything. I’ve seen new species of birds and animals hanging around.
The last critter I encountered was in broad daylight. At about four in the afternoon I sat reading a book in my enclosed patio, accompanied by my cats, Max and Lili. A sound spurred my interest, tearing me from by book. I thought the sprinklers tuned on, but once it registered I realized it wasn’t the sprinklers, it was a rattlesnake. I looked up to see Max crouched behind a chair, observing the creature slithering away, but keeping a barrier between them, very smart. But Lili stood about two inches from the snake’s rattle, not so smart. I screamed for her to go into the house, which she did, thankfully, grabbed Max by the scruff of the neck and tossed him in and went back to monitor where it went. I found it coiled up under the lounge chair. I’ve never seen a snake in the patio area before so I wasn’t sure what protocol should be taken to remove it. My husband was out of town and I was alone to attend to the matter. My good friend, the tomato provider, said her boyfriend could come over to remove it once he returned from work, which was forty-five minutes. I checked on it again and sometime between my phone calls it had moved on. I don’t know where it went, but hopefully if it is going to take up residence it will put us back in balance and dine on the gophers or the night critters.
Causes Lisa Carlson Supports