Saturday, 7 January 2012

Heading to Montréal --Return of the Squirrel Prince

Hi Folks,

I am on my way to Montréal to attend the staff Winter Party.  While I am looking forward to hanging with some Montréalers and one Ottawan (plug for my friend Don) my mind is really on the invasion of my house by 4 footed creatures, by rodents!

It is rare for me to post a follow up Pulp.  I think there has been two previous.

One was an explanation on why the world had not ended despite Harold Camping's mathematical certainty: Working in Ottawa today --The end of the world part deux, redeux -or- why Heisenberg was a dick

And the other was a follow up to the ethical question of when it's okay to punch out a monkey: Stay with the boat. Always stay with the boat

Now today.  In a follow up to Working in Alberta this week --Mouse Hunt many of you wondered,  "Hey, what happened to the mouse?".

Well...

That weekend on my return from Alberta I did go shopping for some Victory (tm) mouse traps and while at Home Despot I saw that also for sale was an electronic mouse trap that essentially electrocutes the unsuspecting mouse upon the little fella entering a chamber that one laces with peanut butter.

I also purchased and installed a new dryer vent that has metal pest proof screening.  I installed securely and injected expandable foam and attached a locking collar ring.

Following is my log of attempts at securing my house from unwanted rodents, be they squirrels or mice.  Absent from this log is my outside interactions with Skunks, Raccoons, Rabbits (I don't mind the rabbits), and some non-rodents, several Ducks and one Fox.

This missive was to be about last night's encounter with a damned lucky mouse, read "Free Pass" a bit further down, but this AM, the Squirrels are back!

Rodent Log

Oct 29/11 Invasion!  Sharlene has called from upstairs, a noise in the attic.  I hear what may be an Elk or a small bear.  I placed a Ghetto Blaster on 107.1 full volume to drive it out and called Carlo the Pest Control Guy. He arrived with Bob and attached a one-way door to the hole that the little squirrel made.  Came back 10 days later and covered over the hole with some sheet steel.  Problem solved.
Nov 27/11 detection!  Mouse droppings in the kitchen.  blegh, yuck, ew.  Scrubbed down kitchen. Set Humane Traps.
Nov 28 trip - no catch, but a thank you note was left by some mouse with a full tummy.
Dec 4/11 First Kill, between 2 AM and 7 AM, cardiac arrest due to electrocution.
Dec 10/11 trip - no catch, between 12 AM and 7 AM, charge fired but no body.
Jan 2/12 kill, between 2 AM and 4 AM, internal decapitation.
Jan 6/12 kill, between Jan 2 and Jan 6. severed low numbered thoracic vertebrae.
Jan 6/12 live catch, evening Jan 6 around 11 PM. rear foot hold, no injury.
Jan 7/12 kill, between 2 AM and  8 AM. crushed base of skull.
Jan 7/12 The squirrels are back! 8 AM auditory detection.  Re-engaged Ghetto blaster, but they seem to enjoy Pink Floyd, I hear what sounds like construction --who gave them power tools?  9: 25 AM Have called back in Carlo and his tactical team.

Free Pass

"Clawack!"  I looked up at Sharlene..  "contact", I said softly.  "I guess we have more mice".  "Clawack!"  "eh?"  The second trap firing puzzle me a bit, I thought it very odd that a second mouse would feed on some peanut butter so soon after his buddy getting got wacked by a steel bar 12 ms. after that critical trigger tripping nibble.

But there had been a distinct second Clawack.

I ventured downstairs to Rue de Souris and prior to peering into the dog proof barricade that I had fashioned I heard the sounds of a mouse trap flipping over and over.  The mystery was solved by sounds alone, the mouse was still alive and its thrashing about had pitched the first trap into the second.  A cascading firing.

Upon my examination of the trap, I observed a very much alive mouse that was was held by one rear foot in the trap.  Not the clean kill that one desires.  The bar striking just at the base of the mouse skull is preferred.  Quick, clean, painless.   This situation is horrible, a worst case scenario.   With a captured foot, the trapped animal is likely to chew its own limb off in a desperate attempt at survival.

I now had to act quickly, this animal had performed no act that justified a continued torture.  So what method of summary execution?  A block of wood to its head resulting in quick death?  I didn't want to accidently use too much force and result in a bleed out on my floor.  A feed of propane gas to induce a coma and ultimate death?  Nay, more likely to cause nervous system disorders and liver damage than quick death, and if I really screwed up I would blow up my house and be written up in someone else's blog.

Drowning?  I had flushed one of his kin down the toilet, could do the same for him.  There it was, his fate planned out, not likely that any governor's reprieve could save him now.  So off he and I went to the bathroom.  But then under the bright light of the powder room I realized that he had suffered no real damage to his foot, no discolouring, no sign of breakage, just held firmly to the platen.

So.. I figured he had a free pass.  I walked him out the front door to the front garden and released him.  He seemed a bit surprised as I dropped him to the ground.  Sat up on his hind legs looked at me, turned and looked away, and then ran off.

It is possible that he will find his way back into my house and if he does, I will hunt him down with extreme prejudice but for now, good luck to him.

Return of the Squirrel Prince

What the hell.  During my re-arming of the Victory mouse traps this AM, I heard what sounded like a team of contractors in the rear guest bedroom.  I ventured upstairs and cautiously opened the door and peered into the room.  No one in overalls or tool belt, yet the noise was louder.

Coming from the attic space was the distinct sounds of construction!  The Squirrel Prince had returned.

I plugged the Ghetto Blaster back in (I had left it up in the attic after the last encounter) but this time the construction continued.  Apparently he has gained an ear for Pink Floyd.  I do have some concern that someone has provided this prince with power tools and a bit more concerned that he is proceeding with some construction up there with out permits or code inspection.

As such, I have called Carlo back in.  Carlo is CAIN Pest Control 416-726-2964.  Have known him for years, always good service, be it ants or neighborhood kids, Carlo will take care of it. (Blatant Commercialization of this Missive? Yes).

Ring..
"Hello, CAIN Pest Control, Carlo speaking."
"Hi Carlo, Daniel Puckett calling.."
"Let me guess, the little suckers came back?"
"Well, I was going to use a slightly different word, and it rhymes.."

What Now?

The fun doesn't stop.  Sharlene suggested to me that the Raccoons may be back under the deck..


Have a good day, and watch out for home invaders.

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