Rabbits

 It's an awful picture, but this was about as close as I could get with the phone...  Which is probably a good thing, as far as rabbits go.  

It's an awful picture, but this was about as close as I could get with the phone...  Which is probably a good thing, as far as rabbits go.  

A few weeks ago I saw,for the first time in the six years that we have been living here, a rabbit in our yard.

It is one of the more curious things (though perhaps not unrelated), for all the challenges we have had with raccoons, there are a handful of other, common critters, that we have virtually never seen in the yard. Rabbits are among them, along with squirrels of both the ground and tree-living varieties.

It's not that they don't live out here in the country. When I am riding around the countryside I see plenty of all three, and I don't have to ride far to see them. There are squirrels at the next house and stand of trees to our north, and rabbits routinely sighted just at the next corner. Ground squirrels routinely make their brave dashes out of the ditch and across the road all over the place - though why they so often choose to do that just as a car is coming has always been beyond me. Perhaps they are sitting in the tall grass with a buddy, drinking a beer, the buddy saying "bet ya won't do it..."

Of course, anyone who has lived with any or all of these critters can tell you each can cause their own problems. Rabbits burrow and eat things from the garden. Squirrels tease your dogs (poor little puppies) and steal from the bird feeders. If you grow sunflowers they will steal the heads off of those as well. Ground squirrels will leave your yard pockmarked with openings just waiting for you to twist an ankle.

Regardless, it's good to see the rabbits. It suggests a bit of balance returning to the yard. They have so far been staying behind, or at least within running distance of, the invisible fence line, so while the dogs are aware of them, they haven't caught one so far.

Of course, a little over a week ago I saw a fox trotting along the side of the field, disappearing behind the shed. The shed, behind which the rabbits appear to be living.