Happy International Raccoon Appreciation Day

I did not know there was an entire day dedicated to raccoons. Don’t let those cute little faces fool you, raccoons are pesky little creatures.

To keep them from destroying my bird feeders, I actually have to grease the poles. I must look like a right fool out there greasing the poles to my bird feeders. But the silly process works.

A Raccoon Story

With the news of a loved one passing away, family members and friends always share memories. The stories help celebrate the life of the person who has left us. After 47 years of marriage, my aunt laid the love her life, my uncle to rest. The stories of his life came from a variety of sources, family, friends, and co-workers. Laughing at the funny stories, the grief of his passing left for an instant.

My uncle was a U.S. Army veteran who received the Purple Heart. And, yes, the playing of Taps at the funeral left no one with a dry eye. I believed my uncle to be a simple man. He worked all of his life in a small factory to support his family. He enjoyed fishing, collecting golf balls (50,000) and vintage record players.

Now, what does his passing have to do with a raccoon? Well, my uncle would sit down on the river flats. While spending hours fishing, he would feed the raccoons. According to the stories, the little pesky creatures would come right up to him and take the food from his hands.

Now, I know logically the raccoon that visited me has no connection with my uncle’s passing. Where I live raccoons are a common sighting, they have been in my bird feeders and frequently play on my porch. (Generally in the middle of the night when I am trying to sleep, I convinced they are having a gathering right under my bedroom window).

The night before my uncle’s funeral, I went to let one my cats in the front door. I was not paying attention which is often my own undoing. My old Siamese cat moves at a slower pace. I got a glimpse of a second animal trailing behind him. Assuming the animal was another one of my cats I held the door open. At that moment, my little dog let out a growl. Glancing back down, the second animal about to enter my door way was a raccoon. Of course, I quickly shut the door. I can just imagine the chaos the little raccoon would create upon entering my house.

Staring up at me, the little raccoon just sat in front of the closed door. Locating some old bread, I threw out the pieces to him (or her I really don’t have the knowledge to tell). I am not brave enough to get closer to the raccoon. The pesky little raccoon may look cute, however; the animal is still a wild creature. Anyways, the entire incident made me think of my uncle.

Now, I have shared my story.

Until next time….peace….

Late Afternoon Fox Sighting

I was writing this afternoon. I noticed a small brown creature run across my yard to the back field. Of course, my first thought was a dog. My parents have a VERY spoiled dachshund and they live next door to me. I thought maybe she had made her way down to my house or dad was out giving her a walk. But on closer inspection, I realized the brown colored animal was a fox.

A few years ago, I photographed foxes in their natural habitat. But I have never viewed any in my immediate surroundings. I was pretty excited to see her (or him, I don’t know the difference upon first glance).  I quickly grabbed my camera and was able to take just three photos before she scurried back into the wooded area.

Wildlife has been in the area more and more over the last few years. People blame the animals. I cannot take this same point of view. We are in a farming community (Please do not take this the wrong way, I respect all the hard work farmers do. My parents did farming when I was a kid. I know the long days that were put into the fields). The problem with animals is based from the clearing of their natural habitat. Large wooded areas are being purged and burned to make room for more farm land. When this happens, animals must relocate. I believe this is the real reason why I have been able to photograph so many different species in my area.

I personally get excited be able to photograph foxes, deer, and especially the little baby bunnies.

There were actually four little ones in the rabbit hole.
There were actually four little ones in the rabbit hole.

I have been informed there are coyotes in the area. I have not had a chance to photograph one of them in the wild. So, we will see as time progresses what other forms of wildlife are going to be around. Of course, I am writing this right now as the raccoons play on my front porch. They are pesky little creatures. But I enjoy watching them interact with each other.

Until next time….peace….