I missed last Friday because I was out hiking in the mountains, encountering bears and wild humming birds.

To be honest, I was too scared to take a picture of the bear, and he didn’t waste any time running away from me, for which I am very happy. The little humming bird was attracted to my bright red backpacking stove and plopped himself right down and took some tentative taps at it, but figured out it wasn’t edible pretty fast and took off for some red berries; also, not enough time to take a photo.

To make up for last Friday’s omission, I have my very own road kill in my backyard. This is the third time in the last 6 months some local predator has killed an animal and left it in my yard. If my cats were outdoor cats I’d suspect them, but they aren’t, so they’re innocent, so far. I know they are frustrated hunters, and I sort of feel sorry for any mouse that gets in my house, not that it’s happened yet.

The first dead animal left in my yard (last winter) was a rabbit – and that was way too gross to take a picture of. The next was a baby rabbit, left entirely intact on the path to my deck. This mole was left in the exact same spot as the baby rabbit, and also entirely intact. In fact I have no idea how it died; there is no visible injury. With whatever is killing stuff and leaving it in my yard, I’m wondering if any mouse could ever get inside.  

deceased mole

deceased mole

I didn’t think moles could forage under my “grass”, as this area is built on huge granite boulders. The only reason there is any “grass” back there is people hauled dirt in and planted the grass. The big trees are busy killing it with shade and nature is replacing it with lots of moss. I don’t mind, I just wish the process would go faster; I still have to go out there and run a weedeater over everything periodically, as there are patches of grass where the deer pee on it, and the dandelions grow really tall and must be whacked off from time to time.

I guess I don’t sound too interested in my yard, but that is not true. What initially attracted me to this house is the yard; it was pretty natural to begin with, and I have encouraged that. I planted some native plants that birds like, and have planted about 4 evergreen huckelberry bushes, which I believe are native to this area. I know the birds like them, and I can eat the little berries too, if I want to.

Hamster report

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