The End of the Not-so-perfect Week

So the previous owner of my home liked climbing ivy. And let it go all over the base of the shutters around the windows at the front of the house. While dealing with the landscaping issue du Juor a couple of months ago, I noticed that the shutters were completely rotten. Between then and today, the bottom fell out of 4 of the 12 shutters. Add in the on-going landscape problems, and the house was starting to look abandoned.

While pulling down the shutters I disturbed something. Either bees or wasps or something. I’m guessing wasps based on the number of nests behind the shutters. I got stung on my cheekbone.

Right now it just hurts like I got punched in the face. (And yes, I do know what that feels like.) I’m guessing that in the morning I will look like I lost a bar fight.

2020 can’t be over soon enough at this point.


Nature Is Not Like a Disney Movie

And you’re only an apex predator when armed. Camper kills bear in self-defense in Colorado.

The chain of events that led to the bear’s death started when the man came out of his camper to his dog barking. The man then called the dog to return to him, which resulted in the bear charging toward the two. The man then shot and killed the bear from a distance of approximately 10 to 15 yards.

There are suggestions for being “bear safe” and they’re probably good. But this guy had the best tool for the job.

Neighbors Are Hysterical

One step up from shocked. At least one step. ‘I was hysterical.’ Latest black bear sighting in a Charlotte neighborhood upsets mom.

So a black bear was videoed in a suburban neighbor in Charlotte, North Carolina. That lead to people freaking out.

“Oh my God, a bear!” Ferah Syed told the Observer of her reaction when the animal entered their yard. “I couldn’t believe it. I was hysterical.”

The bear population in North Carolina is on the rise, but I guess it is still unusual to see one in Charlotte.

Maybe more suburbanites should consider what they might do if a hungry bear gets into their home, looking for food this fall.

Don’t Try to Touch the Aligator

They are not there for your entertainment. Woman killed by alligator in SC was doing homeowner’s nails.

The woman attacked and killed by an alligator in a gated community along the South Carolina coast was visiting the homeowner to do her nails and was trying to touch the animal when it grabbed her, authorities said.

After briefly getting away from the alligator Friday, the woman stood in waist deep water in the Kiawah Island pond and said “I guess I wont do this again,” but the alligator grabbed her in its jaws again and took her under

This is a tragedy, but it is also the kind of thing I write about too often. Less than once per year, but still too often. Disney has convinced Americans that wild animals are really all these cute and cuddly creatures that want to be our friends. They aren’t.

I’ve seen stories of people killed by bears and alligators, people who have climbed over barricades at zoos, usually to get that perfect selfie, or some other insanity, and more. I haven’t seen a story about anyone being killed by feral hogs, but as the picture at this Daley Gator post indicates, they are not little piggies, and while you might stop the big guy in that photo with high powered rifle, if you’re unarmed, you might just be in trouble. (Look closely; one of the pictures is of hogs.)

And here is a link to SiGraybeard’s post from last year on how not to get killed by an alligator. People in Florida might have a bit more experience with gators, than those in South Carolina, but this isn’t about geography.

It’s A Good Thing Guns Aren’t Allowed In California Parks

Someone might get hurt. Oh, wait… Girl, 6, survives mountain lion attack when adult punches animal in ribs.

The mountain lions of California clearly are not afraid of humans. You are only an apex predator when you are armed, and everyone is disarmed.

The victim was walking on a trail with her parents, three other children and some adults Sunday morning in the Rancho San Antonio County Park and Open Space Preserve when a suspected mountain lion leapt at the 6-year-old.

One of the adults punched the mountain lion, believed to be about 160 pounds, in the ribs. The group made loud noises and scared it away.

Because making a loud noise, by busting a cap in the cat would be mean. Or dangerous. Or something.

The park is closed while the authorities search for the cat. No word on what they will do when they find it, because actually saying that they will kill the cat in question would offend the tender sensibilities of the folks on the Left coast.

Wild Hogs Starting to Make Life Difficult for Suburbanites

Unexpectedly, a problem that was ignored didn’t get better. But it was ignored when it was rural problem; now it is hitting suburbs and people are begining to recognize that there is a real a problem. At least they are waking up to the problem in Texas.

First up, a guy and crossbow versus a hog. Wild hog attacks Montgomery County homeowner and his dogs.

A feral hog attacked his dogs, then went after him. When his wife came outside the hog charged her. At some point it broke the back door. But the issue was when it charged his wife.

That was the last straw.

The homeowner got his crossbow and shot and killed the hog.

They’ve let the numbers get so out of control that the hogs are invading suburbia. Doing property damage, and in December 2019, a woman died from wounds inflicted by feral hogs.

They are not just an invasive species, they are destroying wildlife and natural settings.

“They’re a detriment to water quality, soil quality, wildlife, health and human safety, all kinds of things,” Texas A&M wildlife specialist John Tomecek told Houston Public Media.

Next up, a father takes on a smaller hog. (Texas Parks and Wildlife says that the hogs can vary between 100, and 400 pounds.) Watch: Atascocita dad wrangles feral hog after it chases after daughter.

“My husband grew up on a pig farm,” Taryn said. “[So he] took it upon himself to restrain the animal while we waited.”

After the pig was captured, a police officer referred the Powe’s to a personal friend that could “take care of the problem,” Taryn said. She said it took her husband, who is a plant operator for SI Group in Baytown, about three minutes to catch the pesky pig and tie him up before help arrived.

Don’t expect the suburbs to do anything productive until after several people die in attacks. If you don’t think hogs can be that dangerous, look up what a boar-spear is, and why they are designed the way they are. And then hope the wild hogs never show up on your doorstep. (They are roaming the Midwest, but haven’t become the problem they are in Texas. Yet.)

A Firearm Was Not Required in this Case

But it might have made his work easier. New Hampshire Father Chokes ‘Rabid’ Coyote to Death After It Attacked His 2-Year-Old Son: ‘There Wasn’t Much of a Choice’.

O’Reilly, of Kensington, told the station that the coyote came “out of nowhere” and attacked his youngest son, but he was able to kick it away from the child before the animal could do much harm.

Maybe a firearm would have made his life easier.

In California, Bears Are More Valuable Than People

At least to some. And also, why is the Left so violent? California man had a destructive bear killed. Then his Tahoe neighbors went on the attack.

He had a bear on his property, repeatedly, doing damage. He wanted the state to do something. His tree-hugging neighbors went ballistic. (Figuratively speaking.)

Doxxing. Threats of arson on his home. Harassment of employees. etc.

The man said his phone buzzed with hostile calls and texts. Someone filed a bogus trash complaint at his address with local code enforcement officials. People drove by and cursed at his house from the road, he said. Two people were caught on the camera trespassing on the man’s lot as they snooped around the trap. The hateful emails rolled in for days.

“Thousands of people know where you live and your business name with your picture. I hope you get the karma you deserve you worthless piece of sh–!” read one.

“Hopefully you and your family get trapped in a burning house and died just like you want these bears to die,” read another.

Oh those tolerant, peace-loving people in California, who wage campaigns of harassment and make online threats. (Isn’t that a federal crime? Threats of terrorism?)

And this isn’t an isolated incident. Many people have reported encounters with bears in their homes, often resulting in a trip to the hospital. Luckily no one has died. Yet.

Others say that Tahoe’s bears, which often are seen sauntering down streets and snoozing in backyards, aren’t behaving like they would in a true wilderness setting. And they’re troubled by the trend noted by biologists of mother bears appearing to teach their cubs how to break into homes and cars, ensuring the break-ins will continue year after year.

People scarred for life, and even killed, which will certainly happen eventually, will not deter the tree-huggers.

You Might Need Defense Against a 4-footed Predator

It isn’t just ones that walk upright. North Dakota man stops a mountain lion attack at close range.

He was out hunting when a 100 pound mountain lion decided that he might make a nice snack.

“I dropped my dad’s 100-year-old double-barrel, I don’t even remember doing that, and went for the sidearm that I carry with me underneath my jacket,” said Gorney. “My instincts as a military law enforcement officer took over. There was no thought process. It was self-defense.”

You are only an apex predator when armed. Otherwise, you’re just food.

Krystin Waller – Alligator Hunter

Mike Giles has a nice review of an alligator hunter. Young woman lands a couple of monster gators

Well, OK, he is old school and seems to have trouble picturing outdoors-women. But that said, once you get about ⅓ into the article he gets down to the details of the hunt. She “threw back” the 9 foot 7 inch gator, to go after the “really big one.”

The monster gator fought wildly but he was no match for this determined gator hunter. As the gator finally wore down, Waller slowly pulled him near the boat and took aim.

Boom roared the .410 Rossi Tuffy and the gator had met his match. Waller is a Prostaff member for Gatortaker hooks and she knows a few things about finding, catching and shooting gators.

Law says you have to hook and bring them close to the boat, before you can dispatch them.

Click thru for a photo of Waller with her gator, which measured 10 feet, 2 inches long.

Something Seems Off About This

Can a 5-year-old really “escape” from a coyote? Villa Park girl, 5, escapes coyote in front yard: VIDEO.

This story has come thru my news feeds from at least 2 separate places. And something just seems off. Maybe a 5-year-old is too large for a single coyote. Even when I watch the video, I can’t see why it stopped. Maybe it just wasn’t her time.

The animal began to chase Christine, charging at her and coming close.

“I feeled its ear,” she said. “It almost bited my rib.”

A TV interview with a 5-year-old is not the best.

I know more about wolves than I do about coyotes, even though there are coyotes where I live and not wolves. A wolf can run faster than you can legally drive your car through Villa Park. Which is quintessentially suburban Chicago. So why did the coyote not attack? A dog that size, intent on attack would have done serious damage to a 5-year-old girl.

Think Before Entering a Wilderness Area

Don’t act like prey. And try to remember you’re only an apex predator when properly armed. Cougar encounter near Corvallis renews debate over big cats in Oregon.

A guy running through cougar country has an encounter with a large cat.

He did his best to scare it off, yelling and waving his arms, but the cat crept steadily toward him, finally approaching so close that he was able to kick it in the head.

The startled mountain lion vanished into the woods, and Idema, thinking the animal was gone, turned and began running for home. But when he looked over his shoulder, he saw the cat was back — and gaining on him rapidly.

You can’t outrun a wild animal; certainly not if that animal is a cougar. Don’t try. He was saved by some hikers and their dog. The cougar was, eventually, tracked and killed, which has the “nature is cute and cuddly” brigade up in arms.

He’s more likely to run with a group now, and less likely to run in the early morning or evening hours. He’s started carrying one of those really loud emergency whistles, and last week he bought a canister of bear spray.

Which is better than nothing. Slightly.

Alligators in the Midwest

Another one. Alligator rescued from Michigan school pond residing at zoo.

Staff captured a 3 foot long gator on the pond the day before students were to do some “academic study.” I’m guessing some kind of biology class. As per usual, they have named the gator. In this case they’ve named it “Renegade.”

It was likely an illegal pet that escaped or was released.

Only someone with no experience of gators would think they make good pets. This isn’t the first time that this kind of thing has happened.

“Golfing in Florida is just different…”

Florida Man plays golf. Video: Golfer not fazed by 7-foot alligator walking across Central Florida golf course.

Professional wakeboarder Steel Lafferty was spending his day golfing in Osceola County when a 7-foot-long alligator crossed right in front of him.

The video is less than a minute long, and worth a look. Click thru.

I think every Florida golfer has an alligator-in-the-water-hazard story. I know all of the ones I know do, and they love to share them.

You’re Only An Apex Predator When Armed

As this guy found out. Musician, 44, is dragged from his tent and mauled to death in his sleep by a grizzly bear while on a trip in remote Canada to record ambient nature sounds for his work.

Disney has done much to convince people that nature is not dangerous. It is.

A musician who was collecting nature sounds while camping at a remote spot in Canada was mauled to death by a bear that dragged him away as he slept.

As one of the comments pointed out… While he may have been asleep when it started, I don’t think you would sleep thru that.

Bear preparations include things like electric fences, safe food storage, and guns. I doubt that he asked anyone about this kind of thing, or that he would have listened. (Guns are bad, right?)

When these kinds of things come up, I’m usually amused by the way the people are remembered.

First of all, he wanted to transmit by his music to the public his love and respect for nature.

“Respect for nature?” Not so much. You would show “respect” by recognizing the risks and taking some reasonable precautions, like being armed. Or something. No, he had bought into the Disney version of the wilderness. He never read the old stories about the forest, about how nature is “red in tooth and claw.”

Hat tip to Kim du Toit via Nature In The Raw, in which he recommends one of my favorite shotguns, The Mossberg 500 Mariner 12 gauge. Completely (or as completely as possible) impervious to salt water. With a “mixture of 00 buckshot and slugs” it should handle most situations.

Please, people: as far as that old bitch Mother Nature is concerned, we humans are like marshmallows: soft, slow, tasty and harmless. It’s only when we take on accoutrements (such as the above) that put us at the top of the food chain that we stand a chance of survival.

Too true.

Nature Doesn’t Care How You Feel

Hard to be surprised about this. Florida Woman Says Large Alligator Ate Her 100-Pound Dog.

Robinson says she took her dog off his leash to sit on a bench and the dog was running in and out of the water when the gator snatched it.

SiGraybeard said it best.

  1. Keep your pets away from the water, especially small white dogs or cats. [snip]
  2. Don’t go swimming if you know there are gators in the water. Corollary: if your map says “Florida” on it, and you’re in fresh water, there are gators in there. If it’s brackish or saltwater, there might be crocodiles with you.

Another story on the gator/dog incident says the gator was “removed.” Not sure if that’s a euphemism for killed or not. The gator was 11 feet 3 inches long and weighed in at 400 pounds, according to the trapper.

(And at the link to SiGraybeard is an image of a pamphlet sent out by the State of Florida on dealing with gators.)

Alligators in the News

Gators in Miami. Gators in the Midwest. Lots of gators in the news lately.

The alligator that made headlines in Chicago a few weeks back was captured and sent to Florida. Alligator found in Humboldt Park Lagoon gets full health exam at University of Florida.

Veterinarians said the gator, nicknamed “Chance the Snapper” by Chicagoans, seemed to be in good health after his exam, but they won’t know for sure until his blood work comes back from review.

Another gator in the Midwest – this one in Michigan. Michigan man fatally shoots alligator that lunged at him on rural property.

According to the Tuscola County Sheriff’s Office, the alligator escaped from a fenced enclosure at a nearby property where an exotic animal rescue was operating, WSBT reported.

And a “rumor” of a gator in Oklahoma. Is there an alligator in Lake Thunderbird?.

Facebook user Jackie Dawson shared an image that she said her niece took of an alligator in Lake Thunderbird.

Keith Thomas, Fisheries Biologist for Lake Thunderbird said there is nothing official on the supposed sighting right now, but the game warden and state park officials are looking into it.

A 9-foot gator in Miami isn’t usually news. Alligator spotted in SW Miami-Dade leaves community concerned.

A witness spotted the 9-foot gator in the area of Southwest 57th Avenue and 34th Street at around 6:30 a.m. while he was on his way to work.

And another 9-foot gator in Coral Gables. Giant Alligator Captured After It Takes Stroll Down Coral Gables Sidewalk. (And 9 feet really doesn’t qualify as “giant.”)

Video of the gator, which is about 9-feet long, was first posted on the social media site @OnlyInDade.

Peak Tennessee Gives Peak Florida Some Competition

Meth and alligators don’t mix. Tennessee police warn not to flush drugs down toilet for fear of creating ‘meth-gators’.

Word from The Authorities is “Don’t flush your meth down the toilet.”

But in addition to birds, officials said if the water headed far enough downstream… “it would create meth-gators in Shoal Creek and the Tennessee River down in North Alabama.”

Hat tip to Wirecutter, who says there’s Nothing worse than a tweeker gator.

Man Eaten by Alligator

At least a couple parts of him were in the alligator. Investigators confirm body found in Polk County had been eaten by alligator.

A 12-foot, 450 pound gator is fairly respectable.

It is still unclear if the alligator attacked the man when he was alive, or came across him after he died.

He drowned, which is what an alligator would do if it attacked him.

And the British are still insane on the topic of alligators. Fears man eaten alive after mutilated corpse found next to giant 12ft alligator. Alligators don’t eat anything “alive.” Though drowning doesn’t appeal to most people.

I will leave you with SiGraybeard’s Post on Alligators from a while back.

Don’t go swimming if you know there are gators in the water. Corollary: if your map says “Florida” on it, and you’re in fresh water, there are gators in there. If it’s brackish or saltwater, there might be crocodiles with you.

And then there are the sharks…

Alligators – It’s That Time of Year

Alligators in Pittsburgh?

A couple of small gators turned up in Pittsburgh of all places. Where Will They Go? The Fate Of Pittsburgh’s Recently Discovered Alligators.

First came Frankie off the shoreline of the Mon River on the Southside. Then came Chomp the Magic Gator (names given by Humane employees) in all his five feet of glory from Beechview. Then came the call to Humane Animal Rescue’s Sarah Shively on Saturday night.

The latest one is small. Couple of feet. (As yet, he remains unnamed.) The video is entertaining if not particularly informative. (State of the news media today.)

And why is the London media so enthralled with gators? Amazon worker returns from a night shift to find 6ft long alligator blocking the doorway to his Florida home.

‘When you get home from a 10 hour overnight shift at 6am to find THIS sitting on your doorstep,’ he wrote, alongside the hashtags #floridalife and #floridapets.