Spoils of the Country

After the latest raccoon episode, I got an earful from the wife.

“That’s just cruel! There has to be another solution other than killing them.”

“Well, we can take down all the pretty pretty bird feeders so they won’t come up this close.”

These are the spoils from living in the country. One of these days, a deer is going to get killed in front of our house, and I’m gonna have to haul that carcass to the upper five acres where all the bodies are buried.

The first thing that comes off a dead wild animal are fleas.

Right now is fawn time. The new fawns will be showing up shortly, those that survive. We’re not  in a draught any more, but food is scarce, and many will die from starvation in the next couple weeks.

The parks and wildlife department just cringes when they talk of all the folks in town that put out deer corn for the poor starving deer. The axis deer population in town is probably 1/10 that of people because everybody feeds them.

I have a twenty gallon water bucket that I fill most every day here for the deer, but I do not feed them. If I don’t give them water, the rat bastards will jump onto the concrete birdbath to drink that water, sometimes knocking it down. One of these days, they will knock it over onto the water supply line. It’s PVC, and supported by a T-post.

If the day comes when the dingdang deer break my water line, that is the day I break out the 30-30, and start killing. Just harvest the back strap is all, the rest can feed the buzzards. You try to be nice.

Skunks too are plentiful, but have yet to show up on our property. That will be up to me as well.

Gird up or get out.

I didn’t mention that even in the city where she lives, we frequently have possums scamper across the back porch and fence. Man, you talk about a patio clearing scene, and then I get orders to kill…possum, ‘coon, squirrel, what’s the difference? They all carry disease, and possums are especially disgusting.

My dad told me a tale when he trapped a porcupine. Can you imagine? He mentioned that it was really, really mad too.

“Shooting him wasn’t the hard part…it was digging that carcass out of the trap without getting quilled.”

“Ever trapped a skunk?” I asked him.

“Yep.”

“How do you get rid of him without getting sprayed?”

“Very carefully, you put a tarp over the cage. You don’t walk to the cage quickly, or that will excite them. You put your tarp over gently, then drag it to where you’re going to dump it, and then shoot it.”

My neighbor here informed me that skunks always smell. “They don’t even have to spray to stink; they stink all the time. Sometimes, more than others. You can always tell when one is around. We have to be one our guard all the time.”

He had a friend that had a skunk move in under his mobile home. He put up a floodlight that lit up the area under the trailer so much that the skunk left. They like the dark.

I have debated carrying a pistol when I am out and about the ranch. I’d really like to get a Judge.

Taurus Judge® Revolver | 45 Colt/410 ga 3

These babies shoot a .410 shotshell and a .45 long Colt. ‘Nuff said. They also make a lightweight now. It’s not a gun one would go to the range and practice all day. .45 long Colt is a pretty stout round.

Even a segmented round would probably be enough for a medium sized feral hog, if’n one can hit ’em in the right spot.

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