Enough of that
Monday June 08th 2009, 8:43 pm
Filed under: My Garden,Wildlife

imgp7741And so pardon me a moment while I try to track down a mystery.

A few days ago there was an amaryllis knocked off the picnic table on the patio, smashed on the ground.  Who did that? When did–I didn’t do that, did I? I’m certainly not that deaf, I’d have heard it.  Huh.  I picked the plant up and repotted it.imgp7737

A few minutes ago I went out to water the tomatoes at a nice dusky time of day, and there were two more on the ground, one with a smashed pot and one simply in Amaryllis Down mode.  Curious.  Michelle? No, not me, Mom.

And then I saw it.  The birdseed trashcan.  The lid over thataway.   But…but…  Raccoons don’t eat that stuff, do they?  Do possums?  In my experiences growing up in a house in the woods, the ‘coons were good at prying open the cans, the possums at falling in after them and getting stuck.  Dad would brave the teeth on those things, take a broom, tip the metal can over, go THWAP on the bottom, then go back inside the house and wait for them to stop playing possum and leave.

But this was a very small trashcan and easy to climb back out of at their size.

Some animal had apparently been climbing up on the table to divebomb the thing trying to get the lid off.  And it had succeeded.  How did I not notice that earlier?  I packaging-taped it back on in two places, moved the can further away and moved the more fragile amaryllis pots away from the edge of the table, and hoped that would do it.

imgp7747I need a motion sensor attached to a floodlight and our Flip.  (They wouldn’t eat my first tomato of the year, would they?)  I want to see this thing in action in the middle of the night, for the amusement factor if nothing else.  A coon playing falcon–look! Up in the sky!  It’s a bird! It’s a ‘coon! It’s–super-seeded! by the tape.

Meantime, if you’re interested, here is a marvelous collection of falcon pictures taken by one of the fledge watchers, and here’s a few more.  Veer bellyflopped yesterday off the nestbox ledge onto the louver just below and right onto his sister. They were all practicing their flying and landing skills today: one they will eventually master is being able to fly backwards below another one in order for prey to be passed between them.

Those juveniles need a baby peregrine theme song: “Fifty Ways to Leave Your Louver.”

14 Comments so far
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*snort, giggle* I’m gonna use that one someday on my Puntastic husband.
(We have pun wars every once in a while… it gets ugly fast.)

Comment by Diana Troldahl 06.08.09 @ 9:08 pm

I hope that whoever is making all this mischief will live your tomatoes alone. I have recently read about a one woman war with the squirrel over her first and only tomato. She did not win, but I am hoping you will.

Comment by Henya 06.08.09 @ 11:41 pm

Ah..yard mysteries! You’ll need a good look-out for those ‘maters, me thinks. My plums are nearly ripe, which likely means the birds will be all over them soon.

Comment by Ruth 06.08.09 @ 11:56 pm

Uh oh, please not the tomatoes! I prize mine highly.
We are trying to keep deer, rabbits and groundhogs out of our gardens…but I love a good competition. 🙂

Comment by Toni Smoky-Mountains 06.09.09 @ 4:13 am

I don’t plant gardens anymore because mine were only a free buffet for the local wildlife. I even saw a HUGE raccoon all scrunched up in my birdfeeder one night, happily dining on black oil sunflower seeds. Who would have thunk?!!!

Comment by Jody M 06.09.09 @ 4:32 am

Motion lights work. We have them on the other side of the house, by the trashcan. Good luck to your little ‘mater!

(And another great pun…)

Comment by Channon 06.09.09 @ 7:10 am

I’m afraid that critters totally *would* eat your first tomato. And your second. They’re just not good at sharing. The last year I tried to grow tomatoes, a woodchuck moved in (dug a burrow under the forsythia) for the express purpose of eating every single one of my tomatoes. I pouted. And then I discovered that a local farm raises dozens of varieties of tomatoes- yum!- and now I plant flowers instead….

Comment by RobinH 06.09.09 @ 7:14 am

are the same critters that try and open my upstairs window? and scare the bedickens out of me when I look up and there are those little masked bandits? I don’t care what they say, I’m sure they have opposable thumbs!

(PS – get better. Now. That’s an order.)

Comment by afton 06.09.09 @ 7:16 am

You’ve got to love those raccoons. They use to come in through our dog door at night to eat the pet food — drove us (not to mention the dog!) completely batty…

Comment by Jocelyn 06.09.09 @ 8:49 am

motion lights don’t deter our raccoons. Coming out on the deck and staring them down doesn’t work with our ‘coons. I’d love to find something that works on them, so they’d leave my son’s vegetable garden and strawberry plants alone!

Comment by Sandra 06.09.09 @ 9:48 am

I hope this critter does not have a taste for tomatoe’s. Knowing your super stealth sense, you’ll figure it out 😉

Comment by Alicia 06.09.09 @ 10:43 am

Oh, dear, all this wildlife. All I can say is that I wish you well — both with the thieves and anatomically.

Humor – the one thing I CAN provide:

One day a traveling salesman was driving down a back country road at about 30 mph when he noticed that there was a three-legged chicken running alongside his car.

He stepped on the gas but at 50 miles per hour, the chicken was still keeping up. After about a mile of running the chicken ran up a farm lane and into a barn behind an old farm house.

The salesman had time to kill so he turned around and drove up the farm lane. He knocked at the door. When

the farmer answered he told him what he had just seen.

The farmer said that his son was a geneticist and he had developed this breed of chicken because the he, his wife and his son each like a drumstick when they have chicken and this way they only have to kill one chicken.

“That’s the most fantastic thing I’ve ever heard,” said the salesman. “How do they taste?”

“Don’t know,” said the farmer. “Haven’t caught one yet”

Comment by Don Meyer 06.09.09 @ 11:25 am

Right now I have a ridiculously large rock on top of the trashcan. It’s dented the lid irreparably. But nothing else deters the raccoon. We put some empty terracotta flowerpots up there as weights; he broke them. We bungee-corded it; he pried the lid out from underneath. One evening–it was still light out!–we actually caught sight of him. He’s HUGE. He LOVES take-out containers. So during the last long business trip, I put the rock up there, because I have enough to clean up after with three kids and two cats; I don’t need to be cleaning up garbage in the morning, too. Last week I saw that he had tried to pull the garbage bag out from under the lid–a wee little bit overhangs, and he grabbed on and pulled, shredding the thing. When I took off the rock (it’s soooo heavy) and the lid, I saw he’d gotten the bag as far as it would go, but the garbage he was after stayed just out of reach. I bet he was ticked.

We have lots of bunnies, but so far they’ve stayed in the clover patches and left my lettuce alone. I fear I’m just planting a fresh buffet for the wildlife; we’ll see!

Comment by amy 06.09.09 @ 11:52 am

When we lived in Upstate NY, the deer were really hungry, and nothing would deter them. Here it’s not quite so bad, so a good shot of tabasco sauce in a bottle of water makes an effective anti-deer spray. (I have to be careful not to breathe it myself, or it’s an anti-me spray.) We only get racoons occasionally, and they prefer the composter to the garden.

Comment by LauraN 06.09.09 @ 6:20 pm

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