Fossil Prints

Our Leedil Friend’s Foot Prints

Cement shoes this fellow be wearing… This past week we poured the concrete pad for the new 1,000 gallon upper whey tank. The next morning I came out to find little foot prints all over it. Our little ermine friend, a weasel, had been making tracks in the curing concrete. I hope he cleaned his feed off with something other than his tongue when he got done as concrete dries the skin and is very alkaline.

Pseudo-Fossilistia Leafia

Another scientific find, this time on the edge of our super insulated slab. Being that it is fall some leaves are bound to get caught in the matrix and their imprints preserved for future archeologists. Holly jokes that I’m always leaving puzzles for them.

Outdoors: 53째F/33째F Cloudy
Tiny Cottage: 60째F/55째F

About Walter Jeffries

Tinker, Tailor...
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8 Responses to Fossil Prints

  1. Michelle says:

    Are you sure that's from an ermine? It appears to have a thumb on the bottom print, and I thought that was a sign of possum or racoon.

  2. I'm pretty sure. First is that the size is way too small for coon. Second, our dog's ate all the coon, possum, woodchucks, squirrels and such. It has been about 20 years since we've seen sign of a raccoon.

    What you're seeing as a thumb print in the bottom image may just be bubble in the concrete. Unfortunately a single photo doesn't show it quite as clearly as the real thing. Too bad I can't post the entire 4,000 lb slab for viewing but it would clog the internet. That must be Web 3.0. :)

    Lastly, the tracks look exactly like the tracks of our ferrets but smaller so I strongly suspect they're ermine. Still, I didn't see it make the tracks so there is the possibility it was someone else…

  3. Mary Paddock says:

    It's just a shame he didn't leave his initials too.

    Your dogs EAT the raccoons? Color me stunned and impressed. The big boar who occasionally visits our trash cans is big enough I'm rather relieved that none of ours have tangled with him.

  4. Aye, the dogs are avid hunters of pests and predators. In the wild small prey makes up the bulk of their diet. I've seen them eat everything from grasshoppers to coyotes and counted as they snarf down 14 mice. They hunt as a team and are big dogs so they're very efficient at catching dinner.

    When we first moved here there were coon and a fox living in the house. The place had been abandoned by humans for a while so the wild life had moved in. They're fun to see but not to share a bed with, or a kitchen.

    Shortly after we moved here Coy, our first dog invited himself to stay, despite our protests. He quickly cleaned out the place of the foxes, coon, skunks and other animals right around the house.

    Coy's descendants continue to do this valuable service that keeps predators and pests away from the farmstead home area. This is important because coon and skunks are carriers of rabies. The dogs are our first line of defense. They have vaccination for that and every other protection else I can give them.

    Their one bane is porcupines. Despite the threat of quills the dogs are sure there must be a way to get them. Fisher cats can do it but the dog's don't seem to have figured out the trick. I try to get them to simply point out the porcupines to me but so far we have not had a meeting of minds on this.

    Interestingly, the dogs seem to leave the ermine alone. Perhaps because they know our pet ferrets and maybe because we've sat and watched the ermine with them.

  5. rpricenglishinPA says:

    I agree that a good critter defense is a good dog. LOL Our lab/shep mix, Jennie, is from the pound. She's a beta female with people and other dogs, but is amazing within her territory at keeping critters away. We raise chickens, have a horse, a yearly lamb and ducks sometimes. Since we put in our underground fence and let Jennie roam free 24/7 we haven't lost one animal to marauders.

  6. Anonymous says:

    Hey Walter, I have forty acres and I want to put my pigs pasture over a section that has the brook that runs through my property. I'm concerned about winter, I want to not have to haul water out everyday but also, Are they smart enough not to walk out on the frozen part and if they do do you think they'll get out? it's not real deep but some areas are more than others and it doesnt all freeze over just most of it… any helpfull hints?

  7. I would suggest fencing off the brook. A pig on ice is not a pretty sight. A pig through the ice is worse. A brook is also a shared resource that simply passes by you so you don't want to pollute it. Make a buffer along it and then use a 1" black plastic pipe to bring water to the pigs. After the water there could be pig wallow followed by a settling area that is like a marsh. That will filter the outgoing water.

  8. Oh Holly, you are missing such a window of opportunity. Think of all the little fake foot prints you could make out of attaching a kitchen appliance or two to a puppy foot or a kids foot. You could call it the "watch Walter wonder" game.

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