Monday, October 17, 2005

Robert Fulgham and the prairie dogs


Our prairie-dog village has expanded from a few cute things running around on the edge of the horse-pasture to an underground housing development that rivals the catacombs of Rome. The holes are dangerous to horses, and a disease threat to people and domestic animals. Soon the creatures will expand right up to the doorways of homes. Cute no more. Even to the most soft-hearted.

(The packrats must have got the word from the prairie dogs – "Come on – they won't hurt us.”)

Traps? Forget it. Fill in their holes? Ha. Poison? No, bad. A vacuum machine that sucks them out of their holes on golf courses in Colorado was considered. Way too expensive. And the live doggies would just get dumped somewhere else to become someone else's problem.

So. A licensed hunter came and shot more than 800 of them in one afternoon last summer. That only cleaned out the old, the stupid, and the slow. The stronger strain that was left behind just dug deeper and further and faster.

So. The next act was to force a high pressure blast of water from the irrigation system into the holes. The plan: As the doggies float out, bash ‘em with a baseball bat. Desperate measures. But it was found that they could swim and hold their breaths under water. Now they have swimming pools.

The tenacity of life is awesome.
It's one reason I believe there probably is some form of life on Mars, despite the cold and wind and darkness. Teeny tiny little packrats and prairie dogs.
Dug in deep.

From San Juan County, Utah
Written Monday, October 12th, the 285th day 2005.
Sorry, no hyperlinks.
After the next journal entry you have to look it up. Good luck.

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