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passing along a funny tale...

Sunday, October 23, 2016
... from my brother, who I called while driving across south GA last week. I had been thinking of my dad, when traveling the back roads through fields of cotton, ready to harvest. As well as a number of fields with bare stalks of plants that had been defoliated, then picked clean by big, vacuum-like machinery that trundles down the rows pulling the fluffy white fibers from the prickly stems. The cotton is then tightly packed into rolls, wrapped with plastic and loaded onto trucks to be taken to gins where the seeds are removed by more big comb-type machines and the fiber is packed into bales for shipment to mills.

Since I cannot call my dad to tell him he was on my mind, I called my brother to report on the scenery as I traveled. He had an amusing story to share, about a small adventure that occurred at his wife's dads' house recently. You will be really happy this did not happen at your house!

The pa-in-law, named Ray, reported something was digging around in his yard, and rooting up the lawn and landscaping. It only happened after dark, so he did not know what sort of animal would come out of the woods and tear stuff up overnight. He got one of those traps that don't injure the captured animal, so he could just relocate it far away, allowing his carefully tended landscaping to remain intact.

The report I got was that Ray thought it must be an armadillo. That would not surprise me at all, as they are very common here in middle GA. But then I wondered if they had migrated as far north as Virginia. They are often seen along highways here, deceased, on their armored backs with all four feet sticking straight up in the air. They do not seem to be blessed with an abundance of intelligence.

I believe they eat bugs and grubs, little creepy crawly things that normally live in lawns, mulch or just below the surface. So it is reasonable to think that would be rooting up the lawn and stirring up mulch or pine straw around landscape plants. My guess would likely be armadillo or some other small rodent like creature.

What Ray caught in his Hav-A-Hart trap was: a skunk. Now what do you do?  You need a haz-mat suit to get close enough to open the trap. But if you do let it out, you still have the same problem. And you really don't want to pick the trap up to put in in the bed of the pickup truck to take it off someplace far away for relocation. Now what do you do?

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