Thursday, July 17, 2008

Tragedy by Lawnmower

We live in a very wet area so toads are extremely abundant. Since we moved here, seven years ago, it has been a spring tradition for Caleb to collect toads in a bucket (then release them after Mom's pleading).

I enjoy mowing the lawn (at least when I'm feeling guilty about my lack of exercise) but I hate the dodging game I have to play with the toads. They always seem to pop up out of nowhere and usually I am able to rescue them from a very quick, but painful, fate. Sometimes, however, I seem to fail at my rescue attempt miserably.

There was one time, when after mowing an area, I noticed a toad moving in the grass, but upon further inspection, I discovered that he was missing his back feet. I can not tell you how terribly guilty I felt as he struggled to move about. I later checked to see if there was a dead toad around but he must have managed to find a safe place to hide.

Today was another one of those days. As I was cutting our front lawn, I suddenly saw the body of a garter snake by our well. I called out to Hannah and our niece, Haley, to come see it and then it lifted its bloody head up and I gasped. Apparently, I had sliced off a piece of his neck with the quick blades of the mower. I thought he was in the course of dying, so I left him alone in hopes that it would be quick.

I was not so lucky.

It took over 5 hours for his little life to end and only after he had squirmed about in the yard, regurgitated a toad (another I didn't save) and turned belly up. It was a pitiful death for a creature I would never have had feelings for in any other situation.

I can't help but think that the reptiles in our area, cringe and run in terror when they see me head for the shed.

I think I'll leave the mowing to Todd for a while. :)


At 10:03 PM, Anonymous Amy said...

In situations like that, I would just get a hammer or something and uh, try to be merciful. Or make Todd do it. :)

At 7:14 AM, Blogger Kimmy said...

Yeah, someone else suggested a shovel, but Todd felt that it was finally dead by the time the suggestion came. I would most certainly make him do it though!!

At 1:22 PM, Blogger Jeff Greathouse said...

kinda funny, my kids love reptiles, they may have to come over and play.


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