(Click those photos.... you really need the big view to see them.)*disclaimer, these photos wee taken last night, not today.
So y'all know I'm doing summer school right now. As part of our morning "routine".. we go for a short walk down the road that runs alongside our playground and back to a pumping station for the town. It's a very decent hill and quite a bear to get back up.
Each morning (well, almost) we see a groundhog on our lower playground field. Usually we end up scaring it, and it's scurrying back into the woods. So often have we seen him, that we automatically look for him when we get to the top of the hill. At the bottom of the hill, to the right side (left on the way back) is a little grassy sort of access way to a field and trees that I think the town owns but I'm not sure. Each morning, as we turn around to go back up the hill, I look over to that area, just out of curiosity. Yesterday we saw a momma deer and a baby!!! It was so cool. The mother deer froze, because she saw us but the baby deer kept frolicking and then feeding, and it was just so neat. I almost wished we were closer.
Now having seen a groundhog and two deer in the same day, I thought I was maxed out on animal sightings. Seems that wasn't the case. The past bunch of nights my foolish dog has been barking her damn head off around 3am. We thought it was skunks making her nuts. A family of them has taken up residence under my neighbors porch, and they like to forage in our yard. Grubs and all that. Last night, as we were getting ready for bed, the boy called me out to the front room where the dog's crate lives. He flips on the light and says, look in the nut tree.
There was a raccoon in the tree! I've never seen a real live raccoon.. only dead ones on the road. So I sat there and looked for a while, and the boy went to go get his camera.. as I tried to snap some photos with mine and it didn't work out. So as I looked, and looked more.. I realized there were three of them!!! Stacked one on top of each other in the tree. The damn dog kept barking and whining and having a fit.. so they ended up higher up in the tree. We went up to Mr. Man's room, as his windows overlook the top of the nut tree (which I realized this year has grown a cr@pload since we moved in almost 5 years ago) and watched them for a good 20 minutes. The best part, was while we were watching, a skunk walked right under the window!! The racoons hissed at the skunk, and that second photo shows the raccoon hanging out the tree watching the skunk. What a hoot!
This discovery explains why when I went to fill my bird feeders on Sunday one of them had the little perch/stoppers missing. I found them on the ground under the feeder and they were chewed. The boy said it was the birds (eyerolls) and I said it must've been a squirrel, or the little chipmunk who's moved into the yard. No birds chew. C'mon now. But I took the feeder down, because I can't fix it, and grumbled a bit and thought nothing else of it. And here we have "masked bandits" as Ms. Thang called them hanging out in our nut tree. Cool Beans!