As Daylight waned, 2 Bandits about 2 Months Old, both wearing masks, were sited in the Backyard near one of the Birdfeeders. Richard and Melanie quickly came outside to investigate. I was finishing typing an earlier Blog.
Melanie grabbed Chloe Jean Chicken, who was the only Chicken where the Bandits were. With Chloe Jean under her arm, Melanie went directly to make sure the Chickens were safely tucked away into their Coop. Sure enough, once they saw Melanie, those Loving Hennies came pouring out of the Coop towards the proximity of the Bandits. Melanie went into the Coop to encourage a reverse migration, which, with Richard's help, was successful. The gate was then closed. In the meantime, the Raccoons had climbed 1 of the tall Trees.
So what should we do? Richard and Melanie didn't want them to know they might find food sources here at the Farm: Bird Food, Corn, CHICKENS. Yikes. Those Bandits really weren't any bigger than the Chickens themselves. Richard and Melanie stood under the tree pondering what they should do: poke them? cut down the tree? shoot them? We are non-violent in our practice on this Little Farm.
Melanie had the great idea of getting Laddie to come and bark at them. She thought that his barking would be the makings of a bad experience, to which they would not want to return. But, Laddie had not been apprised of that plan. He wasn't really very excited. So he wasn't much help.
So then, the Humans with their Superior Brains decided to Trap the Bandits. This would be their One Warning. So then what would we do with them? Richard suggested taking them to Hollis'. Just kidding.
Richard goes out to the Garage and gets his Antique Trap which still has the number from the Moving Van (#189). He tries to remember how to make it work. Melanie described this as similar to a Tavern Puzzle. He finally figured it out. Melanie found some old Turkey in the Refrigerator to use as bait. They put the Trap and the Bait a few feet South of the Tree.
At this point, Richard and Melanie made sure that all the Chickens were inside their houses, tucked into bed, and sang to. The last point is Melanie's job and not Richard's. She does not remember the Songs that she sang to them nor the number of Stanzas. It surely was brief on this particular evening.
Richard and Melanie came inside to wait and to resume some semblance of normal evening activity. Richard was began making Popcorn for himself and me. Melanie was sitting on the couch looking out the window having some Molasses Cake and a cup of Anise Hyssop Tea. I continued to clatter away at these Keys.
Within few moments, Melanie then noted: "1 is coming down the Tree!" So Melanie and I went to the window to get a closer look. That little Scallywag headed straight for the Peach Tree and began eating Peaches that were on the Ground. Then Melanie noted that part of the Peach Tree was moving. That little Scallywag's Sibling was pilfering our almost ripe Peaches.
So the 3 Humans reconnoitered by the Window pondering out anti-theft approach. While Richard was getting his shoes on, he told Melanie: "Go get Laddie. As soon as you bring Laddie to the corner of the House, I will meet you there." Laddie and Melanie appeared at the Corner of the House and were met by Richard with his Walking Stick (AKA Poking Stick) at the Gate. "All right, Laddie, let's go." Super Sniffer Laddie goes right past the Raccoons to the Turkey Meat in the Trap.
When Richard and Ladd finally got to the Peach Tree, they saw that 1 little Varmint had a surprised look on his face and half a Peach sticking out of his mouth. Richard starts poking at the Raccoon in the Peach Tree. That little pipsqueak Raccoon began making big snarling noises. And our dear Courageous Laddie sticks his tail between his legs and runs away.
With a few Pokes from Richard, the Raccoon falls to the Ground and that does attract Laddie's Attention. Ours too. Let's say that Richard and the Walking Stick encouraged the Bandit to leave the Premises in an expeditious manner.
While Richard was conversing with the 1st Bandit, the 2nd one comes down out of the Peach Tree and lands at the feet of Melanie and me. Melanie grabs the Hoe from me and this little Critter heads straight to the House and dives underneath the Chicken Wire and underneath the Deck. By this time, the 1st Raccoon has exited the property.
The 3 of us gather at the Deck. I get the flashlight because I follow directions very well. Melanie is looking under the deck for Bandit Number 2. Upon location of the Bandit, Richard and I start holding a dance party doing rhythmic steps above him until he finds a hole in the chicken wire to get out. At which point, Richard and Laddie take off after him chasing him down to the Woods.
We probably will put out the Antique Trap tonight under the Peach Tree. Who knows what lives on this property at night? We think we own the Title. But someone else has longstanding squatter's rights.
We don't like to be mean. Melanie talked to them and told them they needed to go. And I just looked at Melanie and said: "Welcome back to the Farm."
To top it off, by the time I finished writing this story, Richard had finished eating all of the Popcorn, which he had intended to share and I had intended to eat.