There is never a dull moment on the mountain! I chased goats wearing flip-flops yesterday. WHAT?!?!
Friday evening at 5 O’clock I headed home from work. As I approached the driveway, I was greeted by a doe, two fawns, three wild turkeys and my husband was on waiting for me on my deck. After a long work week, it felt good to be Home Sweet MOUNTAIN Home! Seeing wildlife in our yard is pretty much an everyday occurrence, although we have had our share of unusual occurrences…
Last year, I was standing in the kitchen talking to David, when I noticed a shadow fly over the deck. At first I brushed it off thinking it was just a bird flying over. But the shadow kept catching my eye and finally I stopped our conversation and had to go out on the deck to find out what was causing these shadows. I was afraid because of the size of the shadows that we might be under attach by a flock of buzzards.
When I walked outside I looked up and did not see anything, but when I looked up on the roof there were about 20 white pigeons on our roof. We have no idea where these pigeons came from. All we know is they were on our roof and looking for a bit of rest and a snack. Each pigeon had a band around its foot. The only thing we could figure is that they were some homing or racing pigeons. We threw a wiffle ball at them to try to get them to fly away. We didn’t want pigeons pooping on our new roof. Eventually all of them flew away, but I don’t know who was more entertained, David and I or the Pigeons. They seemed pretty amused watching us throw the ball at them, especially when we missed.
Yesterday, we had another unusual occurrence. David and I had to make a run to BJ’s Wholesale for some household items we were running low on. When we went outside, I noticed that my pour Forsythia bushes and hosta had been eaten back to stubs. There were also droppings all over the front flag stones and along the border. I also noticed that the rug in front of the front door had been moved away from the font door. I even asked David if he moved the rug. He didn’t think so, but could have done it when came outside not noticing it.
We automatically blamed it on the deer. The deer have eaten everything I have ever tried to plant in the yard. That is until the last month or two. I have had David urinating around my plants every once in a while to keep the deer away. (Yes, I know that is gross, but living in the middle of the woods, on the side of a mountain, you do what you have to do to grow things you love to look at.) The deer can sense the human presence and stays away long after it soaks into the ground.
We left for the store hating on the deer. Especially for crapping at our front door. I mean it’s bad enough that ate up the plants, but they had to crap too?!?… After a few hours, we returned home with a car load of groceries and the needed items from BJ’s. I backed the car up to the front door to save us some steps to the house. We had just about gotten all the items out of the car. I was in the house, when David looked up and saw a goat heading down the driveway. He couldn’t believe what he was seeing and just as he was questioning it to himself another goat and then another were all coming down our driveway towards him. He yells inside at me, “You won’t believe what’s coming down our driveway.” I grabbed a peak outside the door, then raced back inside to get my camera.
It’s as if the goats knew we had just gotten groceries and wanted to know if we had bought them some to. We then realized that it wasn’t a deer that had eaten up the plants in the flower border. It was 3 goats!!
We were a bit flabbergasted by the sight of the goats. They acted as if they would go in the house if I would have opened the door for them. Our HOA does not allow livestock. The community is not zoned for it. It’s not like we could go knocking door to door to find out who they belonged to. If someone did own the goats, they couldn’t or probably wouldn’t admit it if they did. We happened to see our neighbor (the HOA president) drive by while trying to figure out why the goats were in our yard. We flagged him down to let him know. He suggested we call animal control to have them removed. We had no choice, they were eating everything in sight and bumping into David’s truck with their horns.
It took only a few seconds for me to pull up the local animal control number on my smart phone. I called them and they dispatched someone up to the house to get the goats. While we awaited the arrival of animal control David and I stayed outside with the goats. We wanted to make sure that they stayed in sight and I guarded them against eating anymore of my poor plants. David even gave them a bucket of water. We figured they were thirsty, since water is scarce up here as far as standing water goes.
Animal control arrived about 30 minutes after the call was placed. The lady deputy was very nice and seemed quite concerned about the goats. The two females needed to be milked. Their milk bags were swollen and nearly touching the ground. She mentioned there were reports of some missing goats nearby.
It was not an easy task getting corralling the goats and putting them into the animal control truck. We chased the goats around the front yard, hill and driveway for about an hour.
The had become very spooked by us trying to capture them. At one point all three ended up on top of the hill in the front yard. David decided to get some bird seed to try to attract them. It was the closest thing we had that resembled feed. Our hopes were that the feed would allow the goats to let their guard down long enough for us to catch them. It worked. As soon as we started shaking the bird seed around, all three goats started wagging their tails and bleating simultaneously. They still would not come down from the hill. We decided to throw some seed down and walk away.
As soon as we walked away all three goats came down the hill to see what kind of treat we had for them. They liked the idea of feeding time. While trying to corner one with the seed I lost my footing and I got knocked over and bird seed went flying all over the front steps (NOTE TO SELF: never try to wrangle a goat wearing flip-flops).
Finally, the deputy caught one of the females that came up to eat out of the pan of bird seed she had. She had put a ramp on the back of tailgate and led the goat into the truck and placed her in a cage. While she was locking up the cage, David had a rope and lassoed another one by the foot! (My husband the cowboy!!) We were able to wrangle that one into the truck with the first. The third goat paced back and forth. She knew the other two were in the truck, they were calling for her. We made several attempts to catch her, but she decided she wanted no parts of being captured and took off! The last time we saw her she was heading up the mountain across the road from our house. The deputy waited a little bit, but the goat did not come back. The deputy decided to leave and told us if the remaining goat came back to call the dispatcher again. I continued to look in the yard well into the night. I was hoping the third goat had come back so she could be captured and taken back to the others. She never showed up.
Monday afternoon when I got home from work, I opened the front door. David was already home from work and immediately informed me that the missing female goat is named “Biscuit”!! The owner of the goats had left a very kind note on the front door while we were at work. She asked us to please call her if we saw Biscuit and that she would reimburse me for the damaged plants.
I gave the owner of the goats a call to chat with her about what had happened. The owners of the goats think a bear spooked the goats and caused them to escape. They have been missing a little while and the owners feared that the bear had eaten the goats. They were relieved to know they were still alive. I told her about how capturing them was not an easy task and we were sorry we could not capture Biscuit. I then proceeded to ask her the names of the other two goats. The name of the female was Keisha and of all names what do you think the male goat’s name was?? His name is ELVIS!! How ironic that David and I just got married in Vegas in April at the Graceland Wedding Chapel. Only to be visited by a goat named Elvis. But the story doesn’t end there. It turns out the owners of the goats just sold their house. In the contract of the house the goats are to convey with the house. The new owners are from Las Vegas, Nevada!! I am still laughing. There is no way I can make this story up. It is just too good of a story not to share.
The owner offered reimbursement for the damaged plants. I don’t even care about the plants. Every thing that was eaten will put back out. The only damage I had that concerns me is my Japanese Maple tree. That got chewed on and some of the bark was ripped off. My mama got that tree for me after we moved in last year. If it dies, money can’t replace it. I will just have to do my best to make sure it isn’t too injured to survive. Besides how could I charge the lady for giving me a really good story to write.
I sure hope Biscuit finds her way back home with Keisha and Elvis. As much as I dislike what she did to my plants, I cannot stand the fact that Biscuit is out there somewhere all alone. Makes me a little sad…
I will leave you with this song: “The Lonely Goatherd” from the Sound of Music, sung by Julie Andrews.
I’m going to practice my yodeling now… 🙂
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