Thursday, August 3, 2017


the view from our back porch

All things bright and beautiful,
All creatures great and small,
All things wise and wonderful,
The Lord God made them all.
Cecil Frances Alexander

Yesterday's post about a dead raccoon allows me to segue into a  discourse on just a few of the creatures we are encountering in our new Florida home. (note: the house itself is not new, but we are new to it)

I have to say at the outset, Beloved and I are clueless as to why the Lord God made some of these critters. My personal feeling is that they were created beautiful with wonderful purposes in the Garden of Eden, but because of the curse after sin entered the world, some have become most bothersome and even dangerous.

Also, I must readily admit that buying a house that backs up to a forest preserve increases the likelihood of varmints and such residing on our property.

Lizzie surveys his domain
This first one is not bad at all except that a gecko can startle us when he emerges from a dead-like state to quickly dart about. He has a most famous relative featured on the Geico insurance TV commercials. I rather like these guys. I spotted this one on the first day when we were moving into our house. 

Lizzie sees the new bike on the porch for the first time

He has provided us with a certain amount of entertainment. The day I put this decorative little bicycle on the back porch, Lizzie stopped dead in his tracks and seemed to be considering what this odd thing might be.

Lizzie on the bike seat

Within a very short time, he scampered up onto the bicycle seat, obviously grateful for the better vantage point from which to see the yard and to plan out his day. I thought this was surprising, but Beloved said he knew this would happen.

One morning when I opened the drapes by the sliding glass door, this little green tree frog had taken his station between the screen and the glass. Over twenty years ago when we lived in Orlando, one of this guy's ancestors hopped into our entry hall through the front door. I screamed with fear that we wouldn't be able to get him out of the house without committing murder. Beloved ushered him out (I don't remember how). 

I did not react with fear this time, but I also did not welcome him in. Beloved got a broom and went outside, around to the back of the house, opened the screen and encouraged him into the nearby bushes. We have been told to do the same thing if a gecko comes into the house.

Just days after we moved here, we were driving out of our neighborhood when we saw a Black Racer (snake) rapidly making his way in front of us, on the street pavement. He is well-named because he was (1) black, and (2) very fast. I think he went into a storm drain or something -- we didn't slow down to watch, nor to take pictures. You'll have to trust me on this one. He was very real.

That's a sight I hope to not repeat but realize it's normal around here.

immature roach

For a time we would find small roaches in our entry hall and no where else. That surprised me since it's not near the kitchen or the pantry. When we told our bug people about it, we were encouraged to take a snapshot for correct identification.

baby scorpion
We had not got around to calling the bug people to come out because we stopped seeing the roaches, but then this ugly guy and his bud showed up. 

Beloved killed one in the master bathroom water closet, and then I spied one under a chest of drawers in the master bedroom. Beloved identified them as scorpions. I thought he was mistaken, and blamed it on his enjoyment of science fiction books.

But he felt confirmed because he got a zinger feeling in his finger as he killed the second one.  And that did it. We called our bug people to come out. We shared our pictures with him and got all the confirmation we needed. Appropriate measures have been taken.

Of course we now live in termite country. When we signed the closing papers on this house, the sellers told us to be sure to call the company with whom they had a termite contract. They told us it would carry over to us and we should by all means keep it up.  We followed through on that advice and are glad we did.

So with this move away from Colorado, we no longer need heavy coats, boots, shovels, snow scrapers or a snow blower. But we need bug services, year-around weed services, and watchful eyes for creepy crawlies!

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