Monday, February 18, 2008

Holiday Monday

A lurking menace threatens my beautiful green Valentine’s Day bouquet

We have a new statutory holiday in Ontario. Today is the first official Family Day. Despite grumbling about the name and dire warnings about lost productivity from business people, I think a holiday in bleak mid-winter February can only be a good thing. And we are spending the day very productively, working on our house (as is our fantastic tile installer Harry Dunbar, who is not taking the day off).

Wildlife report

Although we live in the city core, wildlife abounds here.

Our gardens and small pond have regular visits from raccoons, opossums, millions of squirrels, chipmunks, mice, a great assortment of birds, and neighbourhood cats and dogs. We keep our two predatory animals in the house, although on separate floors.

When I ventured out to refill the bird feeders two days ago, I trudged through knee-deep snow and noticed that most of my tree wrap and chicken wire protection was now buried and many of the exposed branches of our shrubs have been neatly pruned by sharp rabbit teeth. I’ve been wondering whether an alternate food source, like a bale of clover hay or some carrots, would discourage them from the shrubs or just lure them to my backyard in greater numbers. Anyone?

Non-avian interloper at the bird feeder

The resident mouse who lives, probably with many offspring, in our ramshackle garage, was restocking his food cache with seeds within seconds of me refilling the goldfinch feeder.

The low-res close up of our deer mouse neighbour

No sign of our goldfish who overwinter (we hope) at the bottom of the pond.

Upstairs, the messy bathroom renovation provides perfect camouflage for the local wildlife

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