On The Brink Of Full-Fledged Spring

Early morning is my favorite time to walk the pasture and venture into the wooded area behind our home. It is also the best time to revel in the cacophony of birds singing and woodpeckers busily hammering away at dead trees. At dawn, it is always possible that I might spot one of the red foxes trotting along the trail between our canyon and the pecan orchard, or perhaps catch Daisy deer still lingering about in the woodlands below our house, nibbling on cat brier or wild honeysuckle as she makes her way into the pecan orchard and on to the river for the day. And, most every morning, a group of squirrels can be found under Daisy’s corn feeder, scarfing up kernels of corn she left scattered on the ground.

The sun peeks through a dismal sky.

The sun peeks through a dismal sky.

Most folks around here use chemical to get rid of Henbit, but I find its lavender hues beautiful and the deer love to graze on it, not to mention it attracts a lot of butterflies.

Most folks around here use chemical to get rid of Henbit, but I find its lavender hues beautiful and the deer love to graze on it, not to mention Henbit attracts a lot of butterflies.

One morning this past week, a heavy fog shrouded the area, creating a mystical wonderland. For me, fog creates a kind of quiet that helps me to focus on landscapes, rather than closeups of images in front of me. I also love that the misty event offers me the challenge of working with depth and contrast in subdued light. And, in foggy or overcast conditions, I do not have to worry about shadows or overexposure in my images.

On this particular morning, I was busy cleaning up breakfast dishes, attending to squirrel feedings, and getting our dogs set up with medications for the day, so I missed the heaviest fog conditions. Unfortunately, by the time I ventured out with my camera, the fog was lifting. With my photography, this happens to me far too often – I let too much time slip by and I miss the moment – a reminder that nature waits for no one.

A young Redbud Tree blossoms lavendar, while the Red Currant Shrub offers a yellow flower, and a very old Quince Shrub bears a brilliant red blossom.

A young Redbud Tree blossoms lavender, while the Red Currant Shrub offers a yellow flower, and a very old Quince Shrub bears a brilliant red blossom.

One of several Purple Leaf Redbud trees lining our driveway.

In full blossom, one of several Purple Leaf Redbud trees lining our driveway.

The willowy branches of the Ornamental Redbud are lovely laden in spring pink!

The willowy branches of the Ornamental Redbud are quite lovely, laden in spring pink!

It is this time of early spring in Oklahoma, when the sleepy earth awakens from its winter slumber and Nature comes alive, and our surroundings change quickly. Within days, the metamorphosis from barren and lifeless to green and flourishing unfolds. And if we are not paying attention, we can easily miss the moment.

This woodland blossom will produce some kind of fruit the shape of an apricot... but the fruits are snatched up by birds before I can determine just what the fruit is!

This woodland blossom will produce some kind of fruit the shape of an apricot… but the fruits are snatched up by birds before I can determine just what the fruit is!

Our peach tree is loaded with blossoms this year. So far we have avoided frost or a late freeze this spring... maybe we will have fruit this summer!

Our peach tree is loaded with blossoms this year. So far we have avoided frost or a late freeze this spring… maybe we will have fruit this summer!

The pear trees are four years old now and this is the first year they have put off blossoms! Daisy deer loves pears.

The pear trees are four years old now and this is the first year they have put off blossoms! Daisy deer loves pears – I wonder if she will leave us a few…

I think what I love most about being a farm girl, is the opportunity to spend time outdoors, doing the work I love. Working outside, I do not miss out on much in nature. And, spending time in nature is, for me, a sensory thing… I feel, see, touch, and hear the movement of life, and of time.

When was the last time you allowed fog to envelope you as daylight emerged? Have you ever taken the opportunity to purposefully stand in the rain, just to feel the cool drops on your face? When was the last time you stood outside and experienced the wonder of a formidable storm front as it moved in? What about your last close encounter with a wild creature?  If it has been a while, I hope you will take time to experience nature this spring. I believe that such experiences can take you to, and beyond, the brink of full-fledged living!

Decades ago, FD's Grandmother planted daffodil and iris bulbs all around the back yard perimeter of the old house. In the spring, we see a blanket of color in the distance. Right now the view is yellow with daffodil, but soon the multi-colored iris will be in full bloom. It will become a sea of color!

Decades ago, FD’s Grandmother planted daffodil bulbs and iris rhizomes all around the perimeter of the old house. As a result, we see a blanket of color from our living room windows during the spring. Right now the view is yellow with daffodil, but soon the multi-colored iris will be in full bloom. It will become a sea of color!

© 2015 Day by Day the Farm Girl Way…

 

 

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Grooming Is The Way To Romance…

Always, I am fascinated by what I learn in wildlife rehabilitation. During the time when the little orphans we raise require constant care, however, it is easy to overlook gradual changes in appearance or behavior, and even the development of individual personality, because we tend to them and observe them so many times each day. Then suddenly, we realize that what was one day pink, hairless, and oh so vulnerable with eyes sealed shut, is now a fuzzy ball of fur, with eyes wide open to the wonderful, new world around it – scampering and scurrying about in playful joy. But I have found the most fascinating, and sometimes surprising, realizations come later, when I am able to observe them in their natural environment – the woodlands.

One such experience came just recently, when I was busy cleaning the wildlife watering hole (an old bathtub) we keep filled at the base of the slope behind our home. That old cast iron tub has served many purposes, after being discarded by humans long ago. It was a watering vessel for horses for many years but, after we no longer kept horses, I filled the old tub with dirt and turned it into a planter. Unfortunately, that did not work out very well at all, as it got too much sun in the location it was in.  So then, when we acquired an abandoned Easter duckling that someone discarded at a city lake (and we purchased a second duckling to keep it company), that old bathtub became a swimming hole for the two of them to paddle around in. Later, when orphaned Daisy deer was set free, I had FD move the tub down to the canyon floor to serve as a wildlife watering tub. Every week since that time, I have cleaned the tub and kept it filled with fresh well water. This is a bit of a chore, but I love knowing it provides year-long hydration for all sorts of birds and mammals – and especially for my Daisy deer.

Being as connected with nature as I have become since moving on this place, I often sense when I am being watched. I know that sounds silly, but I cannot tell you the number of times I have had this feeling of being observed, only to spot an animal or bird staring at me! So, when I felt it again while filling the tub with fresh water the other day, I looked around, then up and in the tree just next to the water tub. Sure enough, I spotted two squirrels perched above me. Considering their smaller size, I guessed them to be juveniles, and they appeared to be grooming each other.

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Just above the wildlife water tub I spot two squirrels grooming each other.

Just above the wildlife water tub I spot two squirrels grooming each other.

Having never observed squirrels performing the act of mutual grooming in the wild, I slowly stepped back and walked carefully up the slope and into the house to fetch my camera. When I returned, I found the two of them still sitting quietly together on a limb of a hackberry tree. One squirrel was busy grooming the other, kneading gently at its hair, and sometimes poking its nose into the spots it had just run its paws through – as if removing parasites. I wondered if this was a mating pair and perhaps this was some kind of foreplay, but I never saw one mount the other. After moving around to the front side of the tree to get a better angle with my camera, I was somewhat surprised they did not scramble up the tree or scurry around to the other side of the trunk to hide from me. But now I saw why. These two juveniles were the orphans we raised last fall, Punkin and Mr. Gambini! Mr. Gambini was grooming Punkin, and she seemed to be enjoying the attention. No wonder they did not flee this pesky photographer… after all, I am still their mother too!

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Excuse me, I just need to get this flea on myself!

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Oh, what lovely ears you have!

Mr. Gambini is the one with the fuzzy ears, who appears to be doing most of the grooming on Punkin.

Mr. Gambini is the one with the fuzzy ears, who appears to be doing most of the grooming on Punkin.

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Mr. Gambini burrows deeply in Punkin’s hair to get at a flea… or perhaps he is just snuggling close.

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I love how Punkin’s paw and foreleg is tucked pleasantly to her chest. She seems to enjoy the attention immensely!

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After taking a few photographs and realizing my water was spilling over the sides of the tub, I left Punkin and Gambini to their grooming and ran back up the slope to shut the hydrant off. Later that morning, I researched this grooming activity online to gain a better understanding. What I found was that squirrels do practice mutual grooming, and that this activity often precedes mating. I also learned that it will most likely be June or July before Mr. Gambini will be mature enough to breed, where Miss Punkin might possibly have had the ability to conceive since March of this year.

Looking back over the photographs I took that morning, it gives me a warm feeling to know Punkin and Mr. Gambini are thriving and doing well in their new environment. I have often observed these two on our back porch, acting more like rival siblings while having a squabble over who gets a pecan snack first. But this day, I had seen another side, and observed a sweet moment with the two of them perched together, quietly and carefully grooming each other – and who knows, maybe even practicing a little romance in the process!

© 2015 Day by Day the Farm Girl Way…

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Too Many Hats and Too Many Irons in the Fire…

Do you ever feel the notion to write when you are in the middle of a project that you cannot leave? Do thoughts of writing constantly bubble forth in your mind – the weaving and unraveling of a story or tale that you have a need to tell? These things happen to me all of the time. I often find myself in the middle of a task that must be done, while my mind is flooded with thoughts and ideas about blog posts I long to write. Stories about what I am living or experiencing from day-to-day itch to find their way to my keyboard. But sadly, I push on with the day’s work and the evening’s activities, and nary a word is written down.

Oh, I know what the underlying problem is. I am wearing too many hats and have too many irons in the fire. Of course I have no one to blame but myself, as this is the way I often set myself up each day. I have operated in this manner since I was a young girl, always taking pleasure from being busy and productive. I have always felt a great sense of pride in seeing all that I accomplish in a day. But I am not a young girl anymore, and it is quite apparent that I cannot keep up the physical work and constant juggling of so many tasks. Managing this comes down to deciding which hats to keep and which ones I must put away for a while.

After a 3cc of formula and potty time, Francesca curls up in a ball, ready for four hours of sleep.

After 3cc’s of formula and potty time, Francesca curls up in a ball, ready for four more hours of sleep.

Tucked in the corner of a shoebox, Buddy and Francesca burrow under a towel to find a nice warm spot. A heating pad provides warmth for half of the shoebox. The other half is unheated so that they can move into a cooler area should they wish to.

Tucked in the corner of a shoe box, Buddy and Francesca burrow under a towel to find a nice warm spot. A heating pad provides warmth for half of the shoe box. The other half is unheated so that they can move into a cooler area, should they wish to.

One hat I know I cannot put down anytime soon is my squirrel-mamma hat – you know, the furry one, with the fuzzy, long tail. And, since taking in 2-week-old squirrels, Buddy and Francesca, I have diligently worn that hat while keeping to their feeding schedule of every three to four hours. A typical feeding session actually amounts to about thirty minutes per squirrel, including the time it takes them to finish their formula, and for me to stimulate their “parts” with a cotton ball to encourage the “elimination” process. Basically, caring for these two babies takes up about five hours of my day! And, quite frankly, it has come to the point now where I feel like I have been running a squirrel day care center since last August, when we took in orphaned squirrels, Punkin and Mr. Gambini. Happily, those two are finally off on their own and have been doing quite well for themselves since late February, though they often stop by the back porch to beg a pecan or two. But the new squirrels, Buddy and Francesca, will have to remain under our care until late June or July.

This photo was taken three years ago. Zoe, Bear and Mr. T.

This photo was taken three years ago. Zoe, Bear and Mr. T.

And then there is the Chin-mamma hat that I wear, and caring for our indoor dogs is beginning to make more of a dent in my day as well. Mr. T, the ten-year-old youngster of the trio and also the largest in size, is socially inept. He is afraid of people… well, except for my mother-in-law who he seems to passionately dislike! Every day seems to be a new day for Mr. T. He regularly gets confused and sometimes mistakes even FD or I for an intruder or stranger. He submissive urinates on himself if someone approaches him too quickly. He is missing most of his teeth, so his food must be small enough for him to gob down with his gums. And he is afraid of tile flooring or any other surface that appears slick or has little or no traction. Often, I must carry him up and down steps as he flat refuses to attempt them on his own. He is insecure about anything new or out of place.  Yes, Mr. T requires a love and understanding that not many people would take time or have the patience to offer.

Next is Zoe, our smallest Japanese Chin, who is eleven years old. She is my little ranch hand, always by my side whenever I am working outdoors. Long ago, Zoe injured one of her eyes when, on a wild, ranch-style romp around the front yard, she ran headlong into a tree. Unfortunately, this was not an injury my vet felt he could help with, so now, besides applying ointment to her eye twice a day to keep the pressure down, I have to take Zoe to an animal ophthalmologist in Oklahoma City twice a year for checkups. If this was not enough, Zoe now requires arthritis medicine once a day for her old and aching joints. And yes, this means I also haul her up and down steps when we go outside, as she is often not able to manage them herself.

Which brings us to Bear, our middle-sized Chin who is also eleven years old. Bear was recently diagnosed with “Atlanto-Axial-Subluxation“, which is a painful condition of the neck vertebrae. The treatment for this is that Bear must be kept quiet and not allowed to be overly active – like jumping up on furniture or roughhousing with Mr. T and Zoe. Fortunately, it was not difficult for us to adjust Bear’s activities to this restriction, since we had already been limiting his activity for several years, due to suffering occasional seizures that seemed to be triggered by high-intensity activities like running or playing hard. Keeping him calm seemed to help, but the seizures have recently begun again, so I have resolved to putting him on phenobarbital – adding two more pills to my daily distribution of pharmaceuticals. So come one, come all! And welcome to our wildlife rehabilitation center (Buddy and Francesca) and canine nursing home (Bear and Zoe) and assisted living center (Mr. T)!

Hopefully this weekend I can get my annuals and a few herbs in the flower beds  and planters around the house.

Hopefully this weekend I can get my annuals and a few herbs in the flower beds and planters around the house.

Of course the arrival of spring weather has awakened my desire to get out in the garden and my flower beds. I look longingly at my gardener’s hat with each day that comes and goes, but I have not been able to put more than a hand spade in a patch here and there to do a little weeding. All of my bedding plants sit in their little individual pots, awaiting the day I can get them in the ground. And, not surprising, with the warmer weather and spring rains, the lawn has already required mowing. That will soon be a weekly chore that I cannot let slide or I pay the price later!

After we took on the responsibility of raising Francesca and Buddy, I began to feel the weariness that comes with too many interruptions in my schedule. My outdoor work activity is continually cut short or is completely discarded because of the limitations the squirrel feeding process puts on my time. Added to this, lunch and dinner preparations also interfere with my outdoor work time, or the outdoor work activity cuts into my food preparation and cooking time. With each new day, I found myself constantly organizing everything around the squirrel-feeding schedule. Needless to say, it was not long before I became disillusioned and resentful.

So it should be no surprise that I was a little perturbed yesterday when it became apparent that I would have to make time to take Bear to the veterinarian once again. It had only been two weeks since I had taken him for his annual checkup, and I had inquired about his eyes being irritated at that time. The vet suggested Bear was likely just suffering from the effects of springtime allergies. That diagnosis made sense to me, since I myself had struggled with a sinus infection for a few weeks due to the dry conditions and high tree pollen count. But now it was obvious that Bear had developed an infection in his eyes that was not improving.

Once again taking the twenty-mile drive to the veterinary clinic and thinking about the giant expense the dog’s care had become so far this year, I was not very keen on paying for another office visit charge and still more medication. I knew these expenses were simply due to conditions that come with aging, the costs of various medications, annual exams and shots, and frequent blood work to make sure the medications were not having adverse effects, but they sure were beginning to add up!  Still, when Doc told me Bear’s tear ducts had completely quit producing tears, and he had been suffering dry eye discomfort and pain for at least two weeks, I felt like I had completely failed as his caretaker. I could not imagine having dry eyes for that long. It was no wonder he had not been able to open his eyes the last few days. So, for his treatment, Bear and I went home with a $60, tiny tube of ointment the equivalent of human Restasis. This will have to be applied to Bear’s eyes two times a day, every day, for the rest of his life.

This is not the sharpest photo, but Bear does not like the camera to begin with. He has an infection and very dry eyes. After the first dose of Optimmune (human equivalent of Restasis) he was able to open his eyes slightly. Poor fella.

This is not the sharpest photo, but Bear does not like the camera to begin with. He has an infection and very dry eyes. After the first dose of Optimmune (human equivalent of Restasis) he was able to open his eyes slightly. Poor fella.

On the drive home from the veterinary office, I happened to notice a hawk sitting on a nest in a tree near the highway. Each year in the spring, before the tree leaves obscure the nest from sight, I marvel at the pair of hawks that raise their young in this same nest so close to this busy highway. “If only I would remember to bring my camera on these trips!”, I thought, and soon found myself composing a blog post in my mind… “Hawks of the Highway”. But something more important began to speak to me about the patience and diligence of the female hawk. I could not imagine the hours and days that female sits quietly on her nest, caring for her eggs and protecting them with great diligence. I realized her job as caretaker will not be finished until her young are finally ready to flee the nest. And even then, she must still teach them the hunting skills they will need to survive on their own. Only after she has finished the parenting of her young, will she be able to resume her life as an ordinary hawk.

Punkin often comes to the back door to see if we will bring her a pecan. She has her head right by the door handle so she can get her paws on that pecan PRONTO!

Punkin often comes to the back door to see if we will bring her a pecan. She has her head right by the door handle so she can get her paws on that pecan PRONTO!

I thought about my own role as caretaker, and how the next few years might change up my pace a bit. I might not get to the gardening like I have in the past. My crops may be planted late and they may not produce as well, but maybe it will all work out just fine anyway. I may have to juggle my schedule at times, depending on what wild orphan I might be raising. The meals I prepare for FD and myself might not be elaborate or particularly interesting, but we will get by. And I know someday, when I no longer have aging dogs to care for, I will be glad that I gave them good lives, delivered with caring hands and a loving heart. And that will be a hat I will always be proud to have put on my head, and I will be thankful for the experience it brought.

And finally, there is my writer’s hat. This is a hat I really never take off, but only reluctantly cover with my caretaker and gardening hats. My thoughts about blog posts and book ideas will keep reminding me that, as a writer, I have something important to share, even though I may not be prompt or regular with blog posts. Yes, my writer’s hat is one I could never part with… even when I have too many irons in the fire.

© 2015 Day by Day the Farm Girl Way…

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Taking Down A Widow-Maker

Last spring, several steady, soaking rains caused a couple of large trees to uproot and fall to the ground down in the canyon, just below our house. Then, in early summer, a huge elm tree that had rotted in the middle, snapped off about 15 feet up the trunk one windy day, and scattered a huge amount of debris across the lane that winds its way to the wildlife feeding area. At the time, there was little for us to do about it other than move the large pieces off to the side of our buggy path with a tractor and wait until we could cut up and burn the rest of the wood.

Winter and early spring are my preferred months for cleanup in the woodlands. Obviously, summer is out of the question, as it is generally windy and hot – two prime conditions that usually promote the issuance of a burn ban. When woodland and prairie grasses are dry, one must pay close attention to humidity levels and wind speeds, and be very careful about burning brush piles. I generally keep about 300 feet of hose strung out from the house to the burn pile – just in case.

Another deterrent to cleaning up brush during the warmer months, is that the vegetation grows lush and wild out here, creating a perfect environment in which mosquito and insect populations thrive. But most importantly, at least from a personal standpoint, you will rarely find me in the woodlands picking up wood and debris once the snakes make their warm-weather appearance. It is not so much the simple surprise of suddenly seeing a snake wiggling through the brush that bothers me, it’s that we have venomous Copperheads on the property, and a Copperhead absolutely loves a good wood pile.

Naturally, we cannot clean up the entire woodlands – and we do not wish to. Dead trees make great snags for birds and all sorts of wildlife. Fallen trees and dead brush make for nice little dens and shelter for all sorts of living creatures. Also, the rotting and decaying matter adds to the soil quality of woodland floor, creating all sorts of microcosms we never see on the surface. But there are areas we keep picked up in order to have paths for the electric buggy, for checking perimeter fences, or for simply taking a walk through the woods. All winter and spring, when the weather is agreeable, you will find me gathering logs, limbs, and branches and toting them to the burn pile with my electric buggy and small trailer. Back and forth I go, all the day long. It is pleasant, therapeutic work, allowing me to spend time just being in nature.

Mission accomplished! The walnut tree fell exactly where FD predicted!

Mission accomplished! The walnut tree fell exactly where FD predicted!

Speaking of cleaning up debris from dead and fallen trees, you may remember my post from last May (Nature’s Gym) about FD and I taking down a dead walnut tree that we considered both a “widow-maker” (having the capability of falling on a person and killing them) and a threat to causing damage to either, or both, of our barns.  After conferring with several tree removal services, FD and I decided we would have to remove it ourselves as the prices were just too high to consider hiring it out. We were successful in bringing the tree down without harming either of the barns, and we saved a lot of money!

Back in February this year, the weather finally warmed up a bit and we knew we needed to get after the most threatening widow-maker on the place. FD had just constructed a fire pit in the area we call “the bowl” of the canyon – an open area surrounded mostly by sharply sloping walls. There was no way we could entertain folks around the fire pit with that monstrosity looming overhead. Neither of us were surprised to find that, when FD cut it down one weekend, it crashed right next to the fire pit!

FD cuts the two limbs of main threat to fall. The third remains lodged in another tree, and will eventually rot free, falling at a safer angle.

FD cuts the two limbs that posed the main threat to fall across “the bowl” and fire-pit. The third remains lodged in another tree, and will eventually rot free, falling at a safer angle.

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These limbs look like creepy arms reaching down to snatch up any folks (including us!) that we might be entertaining around the fire pit!

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After bringing the widow-maker down in the bowl area, FD and I did not get many more opportunities for further brush clearing, as late February was filled with Arctic fronts and frigid temperatures, followed by snow in early March. Naturally, I was exasperated that these extreme cold spells and wet snows delayed my woodland work. And then, as the days warmed in mid-March, and the trees began to pollinate, I came down with the worst allergy symptoms I have experienced in a couple of decades. A sinus infection and total misery has kept me indoors for a couple of weeks now, while everyone else has been out putting in gardens and enjoying the spring weather. So, after spending much more time than I can stand stuck indoors, I was chomping at the bit to get outside this weekend and make up for some lost time!

Pink rain falling to the east, illuminated by the setting sun!  Notice the "widow maker" dead tree off to the left side. This scary-looking tree looms over FD's mom's garden area... another removal project we must attend to!

Pink rain falling to the east, illuminated by the setting sun! Notice the “widow-maker” dead tree off to the left side. This scary-looking tree looms over FD’s mom’s garden area… another removal project we must attend to!

Not a puff of breeze, and slightly overcast skies indicated to both FD and me that we needed to get after the next troublesome widow-maker on the place. It towered with creepy, long limbs over my mother-in-law’s garden space. For several years, FD and I have known that monster of a tree must come down – before it fell on mom while she was out working in her garden! At the very least, we thought, it might destroy her small, metal garden shed that housed the mower and all of her garden tools.

As our work began, FD first cut down a smaller dead tree that stood lateral to the widow-maker. The only threat this tree posed was falling on the garden fence, and it was a fairly simple matter to bring it down. Once on the ground, and the bigger limbs cut up by FD’s chainsaw, I began the clean up process using my electric buggy and trailer, while FD got started on the monster tree. I always worked nearby in case FD needed me, but also knew to keep well out of his way when he was bringing limbs or trees down!

My work is off to the left, gathering cut wood from the first smaller, downed tree, and hauling off  to the burn pile with my electric buggy and wagon. FD is working on the larger monster tree in Mom's garden area.

My work is off to the left, gathering cut wood from the first smaller, downed tree, and hauling it off to the burn pile with my electric buggy and wagon. FD is working on the larger, monster tree in Mom’s garden area.

Pulling a limb down gently  with the tractor in order to keep from damaging our fence, FD walks to retrieve his chainsaw.

Having cut and pulled a limb down gently with the tractor in order to keep from damaging our fence, FD walks to retrieve his chainsaw. As soon as he cuts up another load, I will come along to pick it up and haul it to the burn pile. Good pieces will be kept for Mom’s fireplace for next winter.

The limb FD is getting ready to cut looks completely hollowed out - in fact it busted in half!

The limb FD is getting ready to cut up looks completely hollowed out – in fact it busted in half!

While I carted the first load of dead wood to the burn pile, FD began cutting the widow-maker down, limb by limb. But, as I came down the lane on my return from the burn pile, I found FD walking toward me looking quite serious and appearing to be holding one of his hands. The first thought I had was, “Oh no! He’s cut himself with the chainsaw!” In the last few years, we have twice spent a weekend day at the emergency room to have FD’s fingers stitched. Both incidents occurred while FD was on a ladder handling sheet metal, and I could not believe it had happened again – only this time with a chainsaw!

Fortunately, as FD came closer, I realized that the worst had not happened again – at least not something that would require another trip to the emergency room. With a sheepish look on his face and a slight smile, he opened his hands to expose two baby squirrels, curled together in his palms. FD explained that, as he was re-positioning a completely hollowed limb to cut it into smaller pieces for me to haul off, the limb cracked in half, exposing a squirrel’s nest and the two youngsters inside. Had that limb not cracked at the site of the nest, he would not have known the babies were there – and may have cut right through the nest.

Of course, once I got past thinking, “Whew, FD didn’t cut his fingers off” and “Darn, those little babies are so cute!”, the reality of the situation began to sink in. “Just when we had finally gotten our two orphaned squirrels, Punkin and Mr. Gambini, off on their own,” I thought, “here we go again…” Oh well, might as well just welcome little Buddy and Miss Francesca to their new home in a cardboard box with a heating pad, and make the best of it… I guess, this time, the old widow-maker turned out to be an orphan-maker!

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© 2015 Day by Day the Farm Girl Way…

Posted in Animal Rehabilitation, Nature | Tagged , , , , , | 52 Comments