Monday, July 30, 2007

Win Some, Lose Some...

For better or worse, everything seems to even out in the world; there are numerous words and expressions for this natural tendency to parity... even-steven, fifty-fifty, up and down, win some lose some... I just wish the process wasn't sometimes so painful. For example, I've tried to stay out of the lives of the local critters, heeding the expert advice that people too often bring grief with their good intentions. A few exceptions have been made, like the above little racoons that a while back definitely lost their Mom, and were eventually taken to a racoon rehabilitator (who I was so astonished to hear was still doing her good work in spite of losing a finger to one of her charges, that I donated $200 to her cause on the spot).
I will confess we also currently have a small bunny out on the screen porch that will be released in about a week... what that's about, and why he's been named 'Lucky', will be another story. My current musing about things seeming to even out arises from a trip out to Big Grove, the forty acre nature preserve that I volunteer manage. On the way back I spied a large snapping turtle sitting on the edge of the blacktop, preparing to try and cross the very busy road. He was two miles from the lake, headed directly away from it and off into a large cornfield, though his chance of even making it across the hot blacktop was probably 5%. I stopped and ran back and grabbed him. In gratitude he constantly thrust his head back, attempting to take a bite out of me... they really do make a loud snapping noise with their powerful jaws. I was able to dump him into the back of the truck, and off we went to the lake. I was feeling like quite the noble conservationist, but not fifty feet down the road another car coming very fast the other direction flushed a whole flock of little birds right in front of my truck, and I clipped the last one, leaving it fluttering on the road. Well, so because I stopped to save an ugly, mean snapping turtle that wanted nothing better than to bite off my hand, I had just flattened an innocent little bird that only wanted to join its mates twittering in the brush. It was in a somewhat chagrined mood therefore, that I drove to the water and released my foul-tempered charge... my day was not enhanced by the large-stomached fisherman sitting on the bank, who loudly opined that I should have left the turtle on the road, because they just steal bait... there is enough unpleasantness in this story already without recounting my reply to the Joe six-pack fisherman. So, good intentions do not always lead to good results, especially when it comes to our interactions with nature. I mean well, but humility is of necessity my constant companion.
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Those raccoon pups are real cuties.

While riding my bike one day, I stopped to rescue a big snapper who was lying in the middle of the road. A motorist stopped and helped me by finding a length of 2X4 as we both stopped traffic and pushed the turtle off to the side of the road. Of course the snapper tried to bite and hissed all during the episode. Surprisingly the usual NJ impatience and foul tongue was not in evidence during the 5 minutes it took to get the snapper off the road. I guess it was interesting to see such a huge, prehistoric looking creature or maybe they were just interested to see if we would get bitten. Anyway the snapper lumbered off into a swale, the people were entertained and the rescuers felt self righteous.
Ki... snappers really are prehistoric looking. Not cuddly, that's for sure.
I love to hear stories like yours!
I know on one hand you saved a
turtle (his snapping well you know he felt threatned) you know that....and the ~little fallen angel~ well I know that was Mother Nature calling that little bird back home and giving her those ~special wings~!I would like to think that.

You also had your ~angel wings~ on that day and the day you rescued the babies.
Nice to meet kindred spirits..ones who ~CaRe~ for our animals and go out of their way to help nature! smiling NG
Wow, I've never seen baby racoon's before. They are so adorable!
That photo is just so cute! but just wait till they are tipping over your trash cans on your back doorstep. Not so cute then huh?
Well, I have to admit I'm a real softie for little critters. Little racoons are about as cute a little critter as there ever was... they chirp. Boy, they sure grow up with a chip on their shoulder, though.
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