My Sky Color

A forty something Dad, Husband, Engineer guy living in Western Oregon. Reflections on all things in life. A few technical things and whatever else comes along.

Thursday, May 18, 2006

Bandits at 3 O'clock
Recently the cat food in the barn has been cleaned up each morning. This is not typical. So we figured we had some kind of extra consumers. On Tuesday, the 9th, I had to fix some fence and quickly grabbed some wire out of the barn. There was a big commotion over where the cats eat and figured one had fallen or something. A few minutes later my wife went to the barn looking for eggs, then came to talk to me at the fence mending site. She said she had seen a raccoon by the barn. With all of the farm fowl we have having critters with sharp teeth prowling about is not a good thing. Later after getting kids to bed and things cleaned up I went coon hunting. I called the neighbor to warn them on was on the hunt.
I shot one that night. The cat food was safe once more. A few nights later I heard this really loud screaming and screeching. I figured a dog was chasing the pigs. I ran out and checked on them. They were fine. I recollected that I had heard raccoons do this when fighting or playing. When talking to the neighbor she had heard the same thing and thought the same thing. She was hollering for her dogs when I was out checking on the pigs.
Last night while peacefully slumbering this same noise started up at about 3:09 AM. My wife awoke thinking her chickens were under attack. I awoke thinking the bacon was under attack. Quickly trying to get my brain and body functioning I threw on some shorts grabbed a flashlight and the handiest firearm. Running down to the pig pen they were sleeping and not to be bothered. At the same time my wife was checking the coop. I headed up the hill to behind the house. I noticed that the neighbor's goats had startled at something, so I headed up there. I located a raccoon up a fir tree. Keep in mind this is a little after 3 in the morning. Having never practiced shooting with a flashlight, I tried it and drew a bead on the masked maurader. Naw I won't shoot. But then again, this might be my only chance. So I try again to get a steady aim and keep the light on the intended. BOOM! A short barreled 44 mag at 3 AM is really quite loud! I think I missed.
My after action assessment is that I have now officially declared war on the raccoons. I need to change out my handy gun for something a little quieter and easier to hit things with when half asleep. How about a 12 gauge... DMP


At 10:14 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dave, I haven't visited the blog in a while and I was laughing out loud reading about the racoons. I love it!!!! The pictures of Clay and you on the mower was soooo great. I can't wait to come to your homestead. We could all go coon hunting!!!


At 7:21 PM, Anonymous michael said...

I was laughing too. You must have real understanding neighbors.


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