I live in Critter Central. There are birds all over the place. There are a ton of squirrels that live in the area. We have raccoons that live under our house that we must really see about evicting. A woodchuck makes his home around here somewhere as well. I’ve seen him on occasion, coming home from foraging. Once he even came up on the front porch. He probably lives under the house as well. It’s a regular apartment complex under there. For a while, a year or so ago, there was a possum that lived in the shelter of the house by the lilac bush. Once a family of skunks lived in the culvert under our driveway. While skunks are as clean as cats, that smell does cling to everything. One of them still lives somewhere in the neighborhood.
We could learn a lot from the diverse animals that live in and around our homes. For the most part, they seem to get along rather well, except for the odd predator-prey thing. Rabbits forage in the yard, eating grass and a few flowers. Deer come and eat the neighbor’s lettuce in the summer. Someone saw a coyote trotting down the road. Others have seen foxes. Mostly I just see squirrels, the woodchuck and the occasional skunk. Fortunately, we saw him before it turned into a full-scale encounter. The odor isn’t too bad if you leave him alone, upset and the smell turns really ugly, really fast. Sometimes, on my walks, back when I took early morning walks, I would see rabbits in the park. Rarely, I would see them in my own yard, but then, I don’t go in the back early in the morning. I’d like to do that more often in the summer. I could take my netbook or the Nook out on the back deck and enjoy my yard. That’s not to say that I would see any rabbits, just my opening the door would send them scurrying for cover. That’s how rabbits stay alive.
I don’t mind sharing living space with animals; I just don’t want to share my house. A possum that lived here once had trouble with that. I feed cat food to my cats, in return, they give me companionship and keep the vermin population in its place. The possum didn’t understand that arrangement. He found a way to get into the house and help himself to the cat food. He was too big for the cats to deal with. I had to live trap him and forcibly move him to a more suitable habitat. He was taking food and giving nothing in return. That’s not the arrangement I prefer.
Critter Central is not located in the depths of the country. It’s suburbia at its oldest. I live in an old, established neighborhood that has been here for over sixty years now. I don’t think the animals ever moved out. People just didn’t take as much notice of them then as they do now. or perhaps the animals have simply gotten used to humans going about their business. That is fine with me. I don’t bother them, they don’t bother me and we get along just fine.
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