Monday, June 27, 2011
A Franciscan Moment With Brother Rat
My wife is for the birds.
She's a member of Audubon.
Our backyard has several feeders and birdhouses. We have to make regular runs to buy 40-pound bags of seeds.
But along with the birds come some other critters.
Squirrels. (For whom I have a certain fondness, so we also feed them!)
Chipmunks. (Not singing, though.)
A woodchuck. A large fellow that makes my dog nervous.
At least one rat.
He took up residence under the garage, and has been spotted making runs out to seed debris beneath the largest feeder.
My wife refers to him as Rattus rattus. But since he's a brown rat, he's technically Rattus norvegicus. Not that it matters.
He's a rat.
The other guests are welcome. But Brother Rat, while still one of God's creatures, is an uninvited guest.
Besides, he and/or his brothers and sisters got into some books I had stored in the garage.
Now I know Francis was not a big fan of books, but to chew them that way ....
A deadly rat trap.
A capture alive trap.
I opted for the latter.
Yesterday, a chipmunk. I let him go in the yard.
This morning, Rattus norvegicus was in there.
He did not look happy.
After morning Mass, I took him to a nearby park where there's a picnic area and a large often-full dumpster. Mmmmm.
I released the lock on the trap. He leaped out in mid air, hit the grass running, and was gone.
I didn't even get a chance to preach to him!
We'll watch to see is any of his buddies show up under the bird feeder before resetting the trap.
As for Brother Rat, I hope he eats well and has a long happy life.
Just not in our yard.
Pax et bonum