Am I the only one that thinks animals are taking over?
20 years ago I told my Dad I thought I saw a fox in the woods. He said it couldn’t be because they were hunted out. Since then, I’ve seen four or five!
Yesterday afternoon, a buck with felt-covered antlers strolled by a few hundred feet from our house. I walked outside with my rifle and shot into the ground at its feet 3-4 times. (It not being deer season, I couldn’t legally do much else.) He stood stock still and stared at me as if to say, “It’s not deer season, you stupid human.”
Here’s a list of the animals we’ve sighted in the last few years:
– Two beavers, one of which cut down a tree in the store parking lot with the intent of building a dam in the creek that runs through our property. All the people watching eventually scared him off.
– Coyote was first seen in a remote corner of the Shreve swamp 20 years ago. Two years ago I saw one walk across the pasture behind our house in broad daylight. A few days later, we were missing a lamb.
– Deer, in herds as large as 15. A wildlife officer with 30 years experience said that in his career their goal has shifted from “saving the deer” to “saving the woods from the deer.”
– Four foxes, including a pair that played in our back pasture for nearly an hour in broad daylight
– Two skunk, one of which we think is living under the deck.
– Too many raccoons and possums to count
– A bear was spotted last year about five miles from our house.
– Bats have flown near enough to my head at dusk for me to hear their wings flapping.
How long will it be until mountain lions, wolves and bison return? At least I won’t have to worry about heffalumps and woozles. (Yes, I admit to loving Winnie the Pooh as a child.)
We live in a farm community where I suppose wildlife should be expected. Obviously, you can’t pop off 3-4 shots with a rifle in the suburbs like I did yesterday. Of course, that means we have lots of hunters, too. It’s just that the hunters aren’t keeping up any more.
A few weeks ago, a deer wandered through downtown Cleveland. What’s your experience been in the farm communities, suburban towns or even in the cities across this country?