Wednesday, February 01, 2006

February 2, 2006

In celebration of Groundhog Day, we'd like to introduce you to Harrison, an unlikely member of our pack. You guessed it, Harrison is a groundhog, ( aka: woodchuck, chuck, whistle pig, bulldozer, Marmota monax).

We met Harrison last summer in what was left of our garden. He and his friends just about wiped out all of our vegatables. They were gracious enough to leave us the eggplants, habaneros and Thai chili peppers. With the garden now bare , one outgoing, fearless woodchuck set up residence in the stone wall next to our parking area.

He excavated 700 pounds of soil building his new burrow. His new " digs " include 2 entrance ways, numerous " drop holes ", 1 bedroom, 2 baths and a couple of storage rooms. His bedroom is lined with grass and leaves and is located about 3 feet above the entrance, in the back of the burrow. A meticulous housekeeper, he cleans his bathrooms often by burying the excretment. He is also a fanatic about his front door. Each time he goes out for a jaunt, he carefully sweeps the entrance. This is his security system; paw prints = intruders.

In letting go of our disappointment over the loss of our garden, we were able to accept our new neighbor, enjoy his friendship and expand our family. We no longer start our day by yelling , " Get out of the garden" . Now we sit on the rocks outside Harrison's front door, enjoying a cup of tea while he munches on trail mix.
By accepting Harrison into our pack, the dogs no longer feel the need to scare him away, ( obviously they were never really good at that anyway).

To learn about our natural world we encourage you to read The Wild Woods Guide : From Minnesota to Maine, the Nature and Lore of the Great North Woods by Doug Bennet & Tim Tiner..... worth every page.

Celebrate today by getting to know someone in your community.


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