Thursday, July 17, 2008


We've been at the Writer's Lair on Lake Superior for two weeks now, and haven't seen much wildlife save for loons, mergansers and gulls just offshore. This year our encounters with local fauna seem to take place unseen and in the dark.

Last night our new bird feeder was trashed, even the steel standard bent. We suspected a mama bear and three cubs that have been spotted around the vicinity, but instead of bear tracks in the soft ground around the feeder, there were a number of deer imprints, according to the CSI squad that swarmed over the property shortly after dawn.

One of the investigators gravely concluded that the malefactor was large, possibly belligerent, maybe even antlered, and advised us to take steps to protect life and property.

We'll repair the feeder, but henceforth each evening we'll bring it into the cabin.

Vandalism always makes one feel violated, if one lives in the city. Up here in the semi-wilderness, however, residents are simply content not to get eaten along with the bird seed, and shrug off such four-footed depredations as part of the price one pays for living next door to nature.

Now if I can figure out how to rig a camera with a motion detector . . .


  1. Lots of hunting/fishing stores sell motion detector cameras. I'm not a hunter, but I have looked into them as a means to answer any curiousity about nocturnal wildlife. Some are basic digital cameras, some have infrared and night vision capabilities, there are plenty of options. Might make for some interesting blog posts.

  2. Now there's an idea. After JQ posted that comment, I went looking for game cameras, digital cameras with flashes and motion detectors. Some are in the $99 range at 4 megapixels ... I think I'll try one of them out.

  3. (Later.) I bit the bullet, so to speak, and ordered a Bushnell Trail Sentry 4.0 Megapixel Game Camera from Cabelas for $100 plus tax and shipping. It has a 45-foot motion and flash range. Now maybe I can identify the midnight miscreants for the sheriff and have them arrested . . .