2007-06-06 / Loose Ends

Loose Ends

Spring courtship
Susan Nienow

It's spring, and a young frog's fancy turns to croaking really loud all night. There is evidence in our fountain that croaking really loud is effective. Soon we will have our own frog farm. Just let me know if you want them delivered, or you want to come out and catch your own. Roundup time should be in a few weeks.

When we were embarking on this water feature thing, we neglected to take into account the wildlife and our way-too-soft hearts. Our fountain is…well, just one of those little mushroom things. Our daughter, with all of the tact and class we tried to instill in her, took one look and said, "Is that all it does?" Well, the dancing waters start at 9 p.m. every night.

But, most of the time, it squirts water up so it comes down in a mushroom shape. If you close your eyes, you can imagine you are in the mountains beside a stream on its way downhill - if you have a great imagination.

We passed a pasture today with two horses and two colts. I would love to look out and see a colt romping in the yard. But you have to have horses to have a colt, and we have frogs. They are cheaper to keep happy - one little waterspout and they…well, it is spring.

Another critter making herself at home out here is our resident dumb bunny. She waits until we are driving down the driveway and darts out in front of us, squeaking by just before the tires grab her. Bless her heart, she has gifted us with her offspring. We are hoping they take after their father.

Of course, our resident dumb bunny could be a male, but since this bunny always crosses the driveway at the same point, probably near the nest - or is it burrow - we think it is a female. Sorry, no gender bias here.

Yesterday when I was out in the garden, I glanced down and there was a grey nose and two beady l,ittle eyes staring at me from a hole in the ground. Voles - they are a lazy bunch, using mole tunnels rather than digging their own and eating my plants rather than shopping for their own food. They share their garden delicacies - the tops of the plants for the bunnies and the roots for the voles.

The emphasis is on bunch - they are as prolific as frogs. We have enough miles of underground roads crisscrossing my garden for our very own Mixing Bowl. Wonder if we qualify for any tax dollars.

All these young'uns bring out the mother instinct in me. I long for something soft and cuddly. A friend once said the cure for that is to get a puppy. Another woman said I could borrow hers. Two days of whimpering through the night and out every 20 minutes during the day, and I'll be cured, she promised.

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