Snail Carnage by Raccoon

snail

“Rosco, wake up!” Betty exhorted

“Huh, wha — ?!” I not-so-articulated.  One of the dogs had barked, puncturing our velvet-all-encompassing midnight slumber.  I sat up.  In the almost-total darkness I reverted to habit, focusing on listening.

Crunch!  crunch!?  some nasally whiny snarling.  Crunch, crunch! outside the windows and screen door.

The dogs were bristling,  tense, ready to spring out the door.  Betty and I shuffled to the nearby door, poised to exit.  The crunching sounds continued.  I slowly unpinned the latch and we went outside.  In the moonless heavily-shadowed garden just outside, we saw large round shapes as the crunching stopped.  In the dark, objects can easily seem much larger than they are, and after a few stupified cognizingly-deficit moments, the shapes ambled off.  It seemed that whatever they were, they were not necessarily frightened, but annoyed that we intruded.  Raccoons.  Whiny semi-threatening bleeps and blurts of snarls as they scurried off.

Wisely not letting our dogs out, as whatever chase would ensue probably would entail, among other things, many frenzied minutes of us having to go out after them and the inconvenience of retrieval — B ‘n me donned headlights and surveyed the premises.  I encountered two smaller raccoons around the upper corner of the house, and they, too, segued off into the shadows.  My headlight revealed many crushed and shattered snail-shells.  The ‘coons had been feasting, an escargot buffet, ferreting out their hors-d-oeuvre along the sides of our house.

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Okay, for an explanation muchly simplified (or, basically, I don’t want to regale the whole boring story here), our property has a surfeit of snails.  I transplanted a mere dozen ELEVEN years ago from my parent’s home, and the transplanmogrification has been successful beyond all my expectations, almost to equalling whatever wildest dreams I might have ever indulged in about such a thing.  So, I (and we) was (were) not surprized.  Raccoons are enterprising creatures, and it was no surprise that the neighborhood gang of mapaches had not done this earlier, and frequentier.

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A few weeks back, Betty and Rocksea and JaJa survey the hazy Plateau Valley below Powderhorn look-out point.  We had just surveyed a Mesa-top waterfall, not far from Land’s End.  I couldn’t simultaneously hang on to the rock and look down AND snap a photo, so alternatively hung-on and aimed blindly as best I could.  Many dozens of feet down …

waterfall

Moonrise ~

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We added a couple etherial columns to support our porch ~ or, perhaps Reign-bows just before the annual summer forest-fire haze.

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RockSea gets a hot-day desert soak and big drink at Escalante Overlook, surveying the Gunnison River valley ~

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I drive up through the Monument to the other side, where the dorgzeneye did a run up Black Ridge Road ~

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Bruce continues to be a/the? star attraction at the Grand Valley Zoological Center in Fruita.  Yeah, he’s outsighed takin’ some sun ~

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Sunrise (through the forest-fire haze), and

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sunset !

sunset

Below, I’m worried that they’re apparently not worried.  The Unaweep Canyon desert big-horn herd seemingly doesn’t mind cars passing close by.

sheep

Omni-present cat universe

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Mickey has changed his name to Mikki Ninaj.  Milli and Jaja curl up by the periodically-unaccessible drinking hole …

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While our lady cats, Alice and Annie, lounge between the window well and the firewood.

sleepycatz

25 thoughts on “Snail Carnage by Raccoon

    • as stated (briefly) in the post, it’s a short boring story. i didn’t know nor ever encountered snails here in the Grand Valley! until I crunched one on a rainy day while walking at my recently-departed parents’ house. In a fit of … madness? curiosity? boredom? I picked up 13 and took them to a usually-wet part of our yard. Now, 10 years later, they’re pretty well entrenched. the ‘coons ‘ve been back (and presumably before) to cut down on over-population, eh?

      Liked by 1 person

  1. I love the antics of coon family renunions–unless they’ve decided to act like a group of drunkin’ frat boys who have escaped the four walls of their house and are on some spree to cause trouble. Okay … yeah, that pretty much describes all racoon behavior anyway.
    The pictures were a lovely walk through your mesmerizing world, Jay. You do have such a comical extended family. May they bring you dozens more years of happy humor.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Love your greedy, gourmet raccoons. We back onto a reserve and have to wear earplugs to sleep with the sound of constantly chattering skunks. They seem to echo-locate the babies. My husband encountered one last week on the path, at 5 am, He chittered at the skunk, it replied and they both walked off. When we chitter at them through the window, they always reply!

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  3. I love snails and I have absolutely no idea why it breaks my heart seeing crushed shells on the sidewalks on rainy days. So I leave early and try to get as many as I can out of the harm’s way on my way to work. I’m pretty sure they start crawling back to the sidewalk as soon as I turn around. What can I say I’m a bit cucu.
    P.s. your cat is gorgeous

    Liked by 1 person

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