OT RANT: Woodchuck Plague Even Worse Than Usual

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Jack wrote:

Could be worse.
Years ago, when I was visiting the nature center at the Audubon Society of Western Pennsylvania, I ran across their semi-tame groundhog named "Harriet."
The Executive Director said: "You seem interested. Never seen a ground hog before?"
"No," I said. "We don't have them in my part of Texas. We DO, however, have armadillos."
"Heh," the director replied, "pretty much the same thing, I think."
"Tell ya what I'll do," I offered, "I'll trade you an armadillo for a ground hog!"
"GOOD GOD NO!," exclaimed the director. "No way, no how!"
"Uh, why not?"
"Can you even IMAGINE what would happen if a pair of our granny ladies, walking our nature trails, encountered an ARMADILLO?"
Aside: The director of public safety for Tennessee put out a press release not long ago telling motorists that the Texas Nine-Banded Armadillo had made its way into their state. The director cautioned motorists in Tennessee, if they see one on the highway, not to honk at it.
Armadillos, it seems, when startled, will jump straight up in the air about four feet. The motorist will then encounter the equivalent of a 16-pound bowling ball right at windshield level.
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On Jun 20, 8:48 am, snipped-for-privacy@Home.org (Jack) wrote:

You need to get yourself a badger.
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Jack said:

Those groundhogs LOVE mulberry leaves. A young one got into the veggie garden once under the fence (since reinforced). What did it eat first? The leaves from the mulberry shoots growing up amidst the daylilies that run along the fence line. (It did not live to see the next sundown.)
--
Pat in Plymouth MI

"So, it was all a dream."
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In article

http://alternet.org/healthwellness/80868 /
Pollan: Nutrition 'Science' Has Hijacked Our Meals -- and Our Health
Like a lot of Americans, my understanding of nature and our relationship to it was shaped by Emerson and Thoreau and Melville and Whitman. When I actually started to garden, I realized all those ideas about the romance of nature were distinctly unhelpful. Thoreau's love of wilderness and worship of the wild really doesn't equip you when the pests come and destroy your crops, when the woodchuck attacks your broccoli.
I got into trouble following their philosophy. I didn't have a fence, for example. I thought a fence was too alienating from the natural world. I got into a war with a woodchuck -- just like Bill Murray in Caddyshack -- until I was defoliating my property and pouring gasoline down a woodchuck burrow. I was like William Westmoreland in Vietnam, willing to destroy the village to save it.
I realized then that the garden was a very interesting place to examine our relationship to the natural world. Traditionally when Americans want to think about nature, we picture the wilderness, we go camping, we go to Yosemite. But nature is happening in our homes, in our gardens, in our lawns, and on our plates.
--

- Billy

There are three kinds of men: The ones that learn by reading. The few who
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