Wednesday, February 25, 2009
On husbands and oppossums
We have planned for awhile to purchase a rifle. Where we are located rodents and coyotes, as well as stray dogs are always an issue. I am not some killing freak, but if something endangers my family or livestock, I will take measures assured me by the law. So, last night Dad finally got around to purchasing a .22 . He got it home, was showing me this and that, and then locked it and put it away. We have no problems with anything other than the now gone neighbor's cat getting into the chicken coop, and she stole eggs, and birds. I let the biddies out yesterday since it was so nice, and around 7 finally went down to shut them back up, as they are very good about just heading into the coop of their own accord after dark (something, for some reason, our chickens growing up never did). I never carry a flashlight with me-I just call into them, and cluck a little to let me know they are okay, and I lock them up. But last night they were making noises I had never heard before, and as I neared the coop I saw a wiry grey tail round the corner. I ran back to the lower garage and grabbed a mag light and got back to the coop only to find an opossum staring me straight in the face. I yelled for Dad a couple times, and (this is so comforting, mind you) he DIDN'T HEAR A THING, so I ran up to get him. I informed him of our little visitor, and he was more than thrilled that the night he brought home his new gun, would be the first night I ever caught vermin in the coop. He worked on getting it unlocked and loaded, and I headed back out to keep an eye on the visitor. After what seemed like far longer than it should have taken, Dad made it out. I couldn't find the opossum, though. We did see the other neighbor's cat hanging around, but the opossum had slipped off. The girls haven't started laying yet, and there were no missing birds (though a friend reassures me it is only the eggs and scraps they go for), but I really would really rather that the neighborhood rodents did not learn of the free pickin's at the farm, so if we found Mr. Opossum, no matter how laid back he was, he was going to be obliterated. And Dad was disappointed in not being able to fire his new possession, not matter how great the timing was.