Sunday, September 02, 2007

Meanwhile...

...back on the home front...


...we have pests. What are these things?! This buck toothed rodent must weigh at least 12 pounds, and he and his homies have been burrowing around our yard, turning it into a large sponge. With the lack of rain lately, causing the underground earth to become very hard, it appears they have been kicked to the streets. I sure hope our elderly dogs don't have a run-in with them.

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13 Comments:

At 8:20 PM, September 02, 2007, Anonymous Jim said...

That appears to be a groundhog.

 
At 8:43 PM, September 02, 2007, Blogger Foo said...

I'm with Jim, but the picture's a little small and hard to make out.

 
At 10:03 PM, September 02, 2007, Blogger Gwynne said...

But "groundhogs" seem so pedestrian and these are... well...scary! Are you sure it's not one of these?

 
At 10:27 PM, September 02, 2007, Blogger Gwynne said...

Foo, you can now click to enlarge, and as you can see, it is roughly the size of a baby elephant.

 
At 10:42 PM, September 02, 2007, Blogger Janie said...

Looks like a gopher to me. Hard to get out of the yard...seek advice from wise sages. Our groundhogs aren't quite that fat. But...could be.

 
At 7:53 AM, September 03, 2007, Blogger Foo said...

At that size, it does look to be the size of an elephink, doesn't it? =)

I think you can eliminate the capybara, though. According to Wikipedia, the capybara doesn't get up your way much and is significantly larger than your estimated 12 pounds (which is two pounds smaller than my boo-boo cat). The groundhog in the picture looks more petite than yours, but there's a family resemblance and at 4.5-9 pounds would be closer to your 12. Gophers are significantly smaller.

 
At 8:01 AM, September 03, 2007, Blogger Foo said...

By the way, when I was a much younger man, living in Kentucky, groundhogs were a very common nuisance. The natives used to carry their .22s in their vehicles with them and, when they saw a "whistle pig" in a pasture, would hop out and shoot it on sight. They'd then retrieve the carcass and hang it on a fence post as a warning to said pig's family.

I couldn't understand why everyone had such a hate on for the cute little buggers. It was explained to me that the groundhog burrows are a hazard to the cattle, which step in the holes, break a leg, and then have to be destroyed.

 
At 10:27 AM, September 03, 2007, Blogger Gwynne said...

Foo, thank you for your extensive research! I do worry that the spongy ground is a hazard for our horse, but I think the varmits are currently restricting their activity to our lawn. Now, if I'd really been thinking, I would have shot this "whistle pig" with something a little more powerful than my Canon. ;-)

 
At 12:25 PM, September 03, 2007, Blogger beth said...

Maybe it's a Nutria?

I think you're southerly enough to encounter those things....I know they have them in Louisiana.

 
At 1:34 PM, September 03, 2007, Blogger Gwynne said...

So now, everyone's a rodent expert. ;-)

Beth, I'll bet they eat them in LA.

 
At 7:38 AM, September 04, 2007, Blogger DarkoV said...

Hey, don't you be even thinking of killing those groundhogs! The spectre of Punxsutawney Phil will be visiting you every night, whether you're on land or at sea or in the in-between world of being perpetually ties on the dock.

 
At 8:30 AM, September 04, 2007, Blogger beth said...

Gwynne, I think actually that they do. Cause, you know, anything tastes good deep fried and spicy. (These are the people who eat alligator and rattlesnake - seriously, at that point, what's the problem with a big rat?)

 
At 12:54 PM, September 05, 2007, Blogger Ems said...

I couldn't say, but you can buy one of those electronic thumper things you put in the ground. If that doesn't work, clear a hold and put the hose in.

I'm so mean, but I've busted my ankle on one of those darn holes.

 

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