Wednesday, October 30, 2013

IS THE ANIMAL PLANET FILMING AT MY HOUSE?

Are you all familiar with the Animal Planet channel?  I used to love watching all those cute shows about puppies and and different wildlife around the world.  I am really dating myself here but when I was young my parents used to watch Mutual of Omaha's Wild Kingdom.  I could never stand to watch it as there was always some lion or tiger stalking a zebra with babies or something like that.  I know there is a circle of life but I am not sure I want to see it play out right before my eyes.  Well last night I got a big surprise because I could swear someone was filming for an animal program right in my backyard.  

I was calmly settling in to watch a bit of TV and knit, around 8pm when I heard a huge crash and assorted noises I was not familiar with.  I am a bit  hard of hearing, so locating sounds is not always easy for me.  I could not figure out if it was in my garage, laundry room or outside.  When suddenly I heard a splash in my pool.  It was pretty dark out, so the pool is not all that visible but we have a large light just outside the pool that shines up into the trees, so that provided a bit of light.  I got up and ran to the sliding glass door, which was open by the way and saw a small deer in the pool.  I shut the door so the deer would not come in the house and ran to get the phone to call my neighbor (as my husband is in California right now).  Just then I saw the Mother deer frantically running back and forth outside the screen enclosure with a large  (for Florida) coyote.  They were both running around looking for the baby.  Before I could even set the phone down the baby was out of my pool and had busted through another portion of the screen right in front of the coyote.  So what I saw next was the coyote grabbing the baby by the neck and taking it down to the grass, which made me immediately run out of my house onto my lanai screaming and hitting the pool enclosure.  The coyote instantly let the baby go and they both ran off into the woods behind my house.  The baby had gotten up and ran, so I knew it was still relatively okay, and a few minutes later I saw Mom and baby running across my neighbor's backyard.  My brave neighbor Peter came over to investigate with me as I still was not certain there was not an animal in my pool area.  We found the screen where the baby, who I assume was being chased by the coyote, entered the pool area, and then found where it exited.  

After a few minutes I caught my breath, my heart started to slow down a bit when I saw Mother deer prancing about my next door neighbor's backyard, the coyote hot on her heels, I screamed at the coyote and banged on the metal of the screen and the coyote ran off.  Thirty minutes after that the coyote ran across my back yard with the Mom in hot pursuit.  I am keeping my fingers crossed that the baby is okay.  What I witnessed was pretty horrifying, but at the same time it was fascinating to see that there is nothing a Mother won't do to protect her young, including enticing a coyote to move away from her baby.  I swear I could not settle down to go to sleep last night.  I am an animal lover.  I save turtles crossing the road, spiders in my house, frogs in my pool, and worms on my driveway after it rains.  I can not stand for an animal to be hurt.  


This is a picture of how close my backyard is to the sliding glass door where I was standing last night.  Max is in the spot where the coyote and the baby had a big tussle.  The brown box to the right of the picture is the light that shines up into the trees. (But only for a short time every evening)
 

See the broken screen where that poor terrified baby exited my pool area?
 

Where was Max you ask, during this whole horrible episode?  Well he was asleep in the laundry room, he did not make a peep, even with the crash and his Mother screaming like a lunatic.  I wonder if his hearing is going.  He has always had selective hearing, not unlike the other males in my home, but I think he would have heard all that commotion if his hearing was okay.
 

Once I got home from work today I let Max out into the pool area and into the backyard.  Boy once he caught the scent of all that action he was smelling and licking everything.  I was fascinated watching him, it seemed he knew the chain of events just by where he was smelling.   He went exactly to the spot the coyote entered the woods and stood with his paw up, and his tail up like he was pointing.


After that whole story I need something calm and beautiful to look at.  It is a shame I don't drink cause I can assure you a good glass of wine was much needed last night.

Here is to a calmer evening tonight. And I just have to add, why does everything happen when your husband is away?

32 comments:

Taciana Simmons said...

Wow my dear friend you had an exciting night !!!
Like you I really hope the baby was ok.
Glad things have settle down a little on your own "animal Planet" :)

Teresa Kasner said...

Oh dear.. what a frightful time you had! Yes, Dayle was always gone when something awful happened. My best dairy goat was mauled by my own two great danes when my son left the gate open into the pasture, I found her in the evening suffering badly and had to have the veterinarian come out and assess her and then I had to make the decision to put her down and he did. Horrific. I hope you feel less stressed this morning. Hugs to you.. Teresa

Teresa said...

WOW! What anight you had! That would be facinating, but also so scarey to see! Mother nature in action. I hope the fawn is o.k.
It looks like Max is making up for loss time. I bet he is starting to lose his hearing. But then I know that my older dogs would really be in such a deep sleep nothing would disturb them. I hope today is a lot less stressful!

kathy b said...

Oh Yes Everything happens when Fireman is at the Firehouse. Pets pass away, children need stitches and basements flood

BUT that is one cool story! Was the baby deer swimminig? THe circle of life can be so cruel eh?
Im glad you didnt witness the coyote taking it down for good.
I do think Coyotes are beautiful though.

Kris said...

Oh my goodness! How traumatic! Thank goodness you were able to scare the coyote so the baby deer could get away!
I am so far behind in blogging, and visiting my favorites. I hope to get caught up soon!!
xo Kris

CJ STITCHING AND BLOOMS said...

Hello Meredith. Oh My Goodness. I have to say I would not wanted that kind of excitement in my backyard. Pretty scarey indeed.. Poor old Max.. I reckon his hearing maybe going.. But he can still smell/ search out the scene of the crime..vbg I wish you a peaceful evening and week. Hugs Judy

Dee said...

You are so exactly point on about husbands being away at critical points. Steve is ALWAYS away for the excitement and I'm left wondering how he PLANS that. LOL

Max's hearing may be going, but his sniffer looks just fine.

Hopefully, tonight will be a quieter night. We've had deer in our yard, but so far, no coyotes.

Jennifer said...

Yikes, that's quite a tale! I would have been scared too. I am always impressed with the way animals protect their young, it's amazing. I think we're all the same deep down. Poor Max, but what a good boy. I am sure he's enjoying his day of sniffing investigation. Take care while you're alone; my husband travels a fair amount too and I feel like the craziest things always happen while he's gone.

Beth P said...

OMGosh! Poor you and poor deer! That was an incredible string of events that I don't envy you having to see up close and personal. Living in the woods as I do we have all manner of wildlife some that I would not tussle with and others I wouldn't hesitate. The bobcat, fisher cat, and the black bear I wouldn't argue with but pretty much everything else I would be out the door chasing them off, ok skunks have their own way as well, :D I try to let nature be nature since I am living in their home but it is really hard to hear, and in your case, see an animal in distress like that, especially a baby, and not want to do something! I thought I was the only one who rescued earthworms from puddles after it rains!
I'm sorry you had such distress last night... let's just hope the baby deer made it! I agree with Jennifer too, it seems like all the "I need my husband NOW" type of things happen when they are not home!
Hugs my sweet friend,
Beth

RedSetter said...

My goodness, what an adventure and so scary, particularly for an animal lover. I know it is the circle of life, but sometimes life is just pretty unpleasant. I'm not surprised you could not sleep, I'd have been beside myself with worry for the little deer too. Glad you were there to distract the coyote and give the deer's a fighting chance.

kathyinozarks said...

Oh wow Meredith, I didn't realize you were so close to wildlife as well. I have never witnessed anything like that-good for you in helping the baby escape-
I am with you; a glass of wine was definately in order-and I can totally relate about things happening when hubby is away-big hugs to you

Stitchy Mc Floss said...

Wow! I am glad the baby got a way. Mother's are amazing, human and animal alike!

Glad you and Max are ok. :)

Hugs

linda said...

What a scary night you had Meredith, how is it everything seems to happen when you are alone. I think the whole episode would have petrified me and I wouldn't have been able to sleep either. I do hope the baby is ok :)

Mrs. C said...

What a night! I'm glad the baby got away! I'm going with it got away fine... My daughter loves bunnies, we had a lot of bunnies one summer in the yard , we also had an abundance of red fox that summer. Well fox being fox... my daughter was watching the bunnies in our yard from the window when all of a sudden a fox leaped from the woods and took off with one of the bunnies in it's mouth! Screams of horror filled the house! She was 4 at the time ( 14 now ) and sadly i had to explain that it's the way of nature... Needless to say by the end of the summer the bunny population had depleted :( ... BTW I remember sitting down every Sunday night to watch Mutual of Omaha's Wild Kingdom at 7 and then The Wonderful World of Disney at 8 ! It was a weekly family event! :)

elns said...

I was a big fan of Mutual of Omaha as well. Now it's Nature or NOVA on PBS. Sounds like you need none of it in that back yard of yours. Fascinating! Wishing you calm evenings.

Joy said...

OH I do hope the baby is alright! Like you I can't bear to see or know of animals being hurt and this must have been so upsetting for you. Brave Mummy Deer - and so true Meredith, there's no stopping a Mother from protecting her young, regardless of the species!!
Perhaps Max boy has become a bit 'hard of hearing' now but there's certainly nothing amiss with his sense of smell! You told the story so well I could have been there with you Meredith, thank you, and I hope there are no re-occurances of such excitement for you!
Warm hugs, Joy xo

Jen @ Muddy Boot Dreams said...

Oh M...that's just awful, circle of life not withstanding, how very upsetting to have to see it go down in your own backyard.

Jen

Tree Hugger - Suzan said...

How terribly frightning for you Meredith!!Seems things like this always happen when the guy is away!!
I'm much like you in not stepping on creatures and moving them out of harms way if possible. AND, I know that there is food chain- but I do not want to witness it and my heart pours out for the fawn mother deer. We are having problems with coyotes here in Atlanta. We had to have a trapper come out to our school and he trapped four of them since the kids were seeing them at recess and the playground backs up to woods. We're loosing house cats and neighbors are blaming it on the coyotes.

Tree Hugger - Suzan said...

BTW- You have a lovely back yard!! So lucky to have woods/forest area!!

Susanne said...

I can only imagine how traumatic that must have been for all involved, the baby deer, the mother and you....I have no mercy for the coyote. At the boarding kennel where I sometimes keep my dogs the owner says she has coyotes. The kennel building is located on the edge of their huge woods, they named it Big Woods Boarding Kennel. She told me they have coyotes and she said at night you can hear them calling, they seldom leave the woods and if they do it is usually at the edge. I saw one one morning when I was on my way to work. I looked in my rear view mirror and there it was, in the road. I had to take a second look, they have a tail like a bottle brush and that is how you can tell them apart from dogs that would be similar in size. The 3rd time I looked and it was gone. We use to watch Wild Kingdom too, and the show with Marty Stouffer's Wild America, anything with wildlife. Hope things have settled down for you....
(((HUGS))) Susanne :)

Pradeepa said...

What an exciting night you have had! I hope the baby is not injured.

Betsy said...

Oh my goodness it WAS just like Mutual of Omaha's Wild Kingdom wasn't it? My parents always watched it too and I always went to my bedroom to read a book. I couldn't stand to see the animals get hurt or worse. A lot of the Sunday night Disney shows were unwatchable by me for the same reason although they usually ended up with everyone okay, if my memory serves me correctly.
I sure hope the baby is okay. We Mom's will do anything for our babies won't we? I'm sorry you had to go through that without your hubby there to help you.
Poor Max. His hearing must be going or he would have been right there protecting you.
I hope tonight was calmer for you.
Blessings,
Betsy

gaia said...

What an interesting story!You are so lucky to live near nature and wild life.
Hugs,
Gaia.

ColourMeCrochet said...

Wow Meredith, that must of been quite scary and heart thumping, I do hope Mum and Baby are ok. You certainly have a busy back garden.
Sally xxx

Chrissie said...

I remember Wild Kingdom when I was little, but I never had it come to life quite like that! An amazing story, I'm glad everyone seems to be ok, including you! Chrissie x

Grayseasailor said...

In other posts when you mentioned living near alligators, I thought that was pretty scary and so foreign to my experience that I never thought of you also having deer and coyotes nearby. Coyotes regularly trail across our property and once we saw a deer, but so far have never witnessed the survival of the fittest encounter like you described here. I'm sorry your hubby was not there to back you up, and sorry that Max was unaware of your need of his support as well, but I am proud of you for caring and doing what you could to protect the weak. Bravo, Mere!!!
Gracie xx

Faith said...

What a scare! More scary was when I saw the title of your post and then saw the pic of max in your garden I thought it was a lion! Haha! I don't like the grown up animal programs either, too much to see although I know how these things work, I don't need to see it. In a way it was probably a good thing that Max slept as it may have been distressing for him too. My dog being a sniffer loops around fast when following a scent, he goes nuts if there's been a fox about, goodness knows what he'd think of a coyote.

Tammy@T's Daily Treasures said...

Oh my goodness! How terrifying that must have been. I know there's a cycle of life but I'm with you on not wanting to see it played out and you witnessed it first hand. Yikes! I hope the baby is okay. Those wild mamas will do anything to protect their young. Max's hearing might be going but his smell sure isn't. Hugs, Tammy

Toni said...

Good heavens! I hope Mama deer thumped the coyote good and hard. Poor little fawn!

EMMA said...

Goodness me, what an ordeal. Hope the baby deer is Okay. Thanks to you and the mama deer I think the coyote will look elsewhere for his supper in future.

Fay said...

Oh my goodness what a night! I'm glad you and Max are safe, and hopefully the mother deer and her baby!:)
hugs,
Fay

Rose Red said...

Oh my! How awful and scary. I know a while ago now, but I hope you recovered ok, and I so hope the deer are both ok. I know it's all part of the cycle of life, but you don't often see it acted out in your backyard.