Thursday, January 5, 2012

A Puzzlement

Folks, we have a puzzle here tonight.  Keith got home before me today, and called me to tell me there was a dead animal out in the yard.  Lilly Ann was not only NOT near it, but was avoiding it... and instead of trying to kill the pugs when they went outside and sniffed at it, she ignored them.  This is NOT her regular modus operandi.

Here is the creature... pardon the picture, it is on it's back... Keith tried to get a picture of the teeth, so look at the head.

Sorry for the gore.  Here's one possibility:  We have seen several very large raptors around here... it could have been picked up by an owl or very large hawk, and then the bird had trouble carrying it very far, and dropped it in the yard.  It has been attacked, but the wound is really not all that big.
See the tail?  It is similar to a beaver's.  Remember that we are one mile from Stranger Creek, a very large creek that flows 12 months a year, and also from the two big ponds at Spehars. 

Is it an adult muskrat?  The tail doesn't look right for that.  It IS a rodent, see the incisors ...biffigy the picture and you can clearly see the biting and digging teeth.  Woodchuck?  There are plenty of woodchucks... we had them under the house next to us in Leavenworth, and they drove Oscar nuts when they came out to eat in the front yard and he could see them through the front room window, but we have yet to see one near our place here.

Like we said, the dogs did not seem all that interested in it, and Lilly, who is the worst resource guarder here, has ignored it.  If she had killed it, she would be laying near it and not let any other dog anywhere in the area.   Strange.


(Hannah continues to do well tonight, eating and drinking about twice what she did... we are so very glad for her.)


  1. If you were in south Texas, some would say you had a Chupacabra! I hope you solve your mystery.

  2. I can't tell very much from the picture, Mary Ann, but it looks a lot like a young groundhog. (Or what's left of it.)

  3. Not a beaver or muskrat, that's for sure (wrong tail for either). I just did a quick google on woodchuck, and it definitely could be that. The dogs' reactions are strange; perhaps woodchucks smell or taste bad? I'd dispose of it, just in case it was poisoned somehow.

  4. It looks like a marmot. See link for pic. I saw them all the time when I lived in Idaho. I think there are some species back east too.

  5. It's not something that is common here in Mississippi.

  6. Google image "Woodchuck", common back where I am from, Kentucky. That's your mystery beast.

  7. Hmm..
    Well that is quite a sight, and a strange incident.
    Hope it's an isolated incident as well.

    I'll have to show this post to my hubby...see what he thinks.


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