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A tick, a raccoon, a fox and a rat all go walking into a barn…

Updated: Aug 9

This week we have had many of God’s creatures visit us. Luckily they were not two by two. Let’s organize this by

beast:


Ticks

Until I moved to the farm, I did not realize there were so many ticks and fleas. You are welcome. We must be keeping them all here on the farm so they do not bother you. Last night I went to tell Josh goodnight. Josh told me, "Wow, I have another tick on my head." (This is his second one on his head. He has had multiple ticks on his person). I maternally say, "Where is it? I will help you get it off". Josh retorts, "Oh, don't worry about it, I just got it off." My voice a few notes higher than normal, "Where did you put it?" Josh flippantly responds, "I threw it behind my bed." He threw a tick behind his bed! I really don't know what to say to that. I feel like Tom Sawyer's aunt.

Here is a picture of Jamie getting the first tick from Josh's head.

Also, I am embarrassed to say, I am noticing fleas in the house. I am not sure how we are getting them. Our indoor cat is the only animal allowed in the house. I am baffled, ashamed, sad, bitten and constantly reminded. Danielle keeps saying, “Oh my gosh! There is another flea. I put it under my microscope. Do you want to see it?” Jamie and I will have to take action this weekend.


Raccoon

Two days ago we noticed a baby raccoon in the tree behind our house. Later it moved into our barn. Jamie and the kids adored it. It was so cute, but I was very nervous and had many questions.



Questions:

1) Did Jamie and the kids ever hear of RABIES?


2) Can you get a preventive rabies shot?

I can imagine asking my doctor this question over the phone.


Me on the phone to the doctor:

Yes, Hi, we have a wild raccoon living in our backyard and the kids just loving playing with it. Can I get them in for rabies shots, you know just in case.


3) Where do you take a raccoon if you catch it? Is there a raccoon sanctuary in Eustis?


4) Where is Mama Raccoon?


This morning Jamie went out to do barn work and found the raccoon dead on the path between the house and the barn. Well obviously it is now a crime scene. I have ordered the yellow crime scene tape from Amazon. I am out of tape and it should be here in 2 day – Amazon Prime :) The real question is: “Who did it?”


Below is a picture of the raccoon curled up in the barn. He is alive in this picture (I'm not morbid)



Fox

This week the kids went out to the pasture and found a bunch of feathers. One of their favorite chickens, Tender, was missing. Again, this is another crime scene. However, in this case we think we know the culprit:


Suspect: A big red Fox. We will call him Larry.


Motive: Larry likes the taste of Chicken Tender


Weapon: Larry's sharp teeth and street smarts.


We have not let the chickens out since the murder. Yesterday, we were doing school work and Danielle bellowed, “FFFOOXXX”. It was mid-day and he was sauntering in our pasture toward our barn. I yelled to the kids, “Get your

guns!”. (They are BB guns – I do not arm my children with lethal weapons). I deputized my children quickly.

Then the vigilantes ran out to shoot at the fox. We did not want to kill the fox just rough it up a bit. The dogs were going wild. Unfortunately, the kids missed the fox. I am now thinking about a paint gun. We are also in the market for a donkey. Fun Farm Fact - Donkeys will protect your farm. They will kill coyotes and foxes.


Rat

I hate mice and rats. I hate even saying the word rat. It is such an ugly word rrrrrrrraaaaaaaattttttttttt. Anyway, they have been spotted in the barn (I have BIG EYES as I type this). I am beside myself! I told Jamie he had to take care of them – RIGHT NOW. I asked if he could get the traps that do not kill them. He laughed in my face and said, “NO”. I told him I don’t care how he rids of them just don’t tell me. Well, he didn’t hear me clearly, because we have RRAAATTT traps behind our feed bins. Hey Jamie – I can see them. Anyway, as I said Jamie went out this morning to the barn, found the dead raccoon, and went into the feed room. There, in the RRRAAATTT trap, was a mouse caught by his tail. Jamie released him in the acreage behind our property. I would hate to be the man of the house. In the first 30 minutes of Jamie’s day, he scooped up a dead raccoon and freed a mouse. Way to go, Jamie – my hero!


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