Friday, April 4, 2008

Pocket sized rescue

Rodney and I were doing some work in the chicken house this morning, moving some chickens around so that they would be evenly spaced out. We have plastic culverts that separate the "pens" so that there are 4 pens to the house. Well, sometimes stuff gets inside these culverts, lots of poop and bugs, sometimes chickens and today we found an opossum. I was lifting the culvert to put it under the feeder and thought, "hmmm this thing feels awfully heavy".  I tried several things to try to get what ever was in it to come out. Then Rodney showed up to help. I stood back and watched because I thought that some horrible thing was going to come out of there, like a big dead chicken or some other putrid, ghastly thing . Then out came a big fat opossum. She had babies in her pouch and two of them fell out on the ground as she waddled off, parting the chickens like Moses parted the red sea. Rodney went out to the truck to get his gun, I stood there staring at these floundering babies in complete shock and amazement. I wasn't sure if I should pick them up, I didn't know if they might perhaps bite?? They were so cute and looked so helpless that my instincts got the better of me and I bent down and picked them up. They immediately clung to my fingers with their feet and hands, and tail. About this time, Rodney was back in the chicken house stalking the mother down and I quietly put the babies in my pocket and told them to be very quite. The poor mother was exterminated for nothing more than choosing to raise her children in a inopportune location, but I had two of her babies in my pocket, warm and safe from mean old farmer Rodney. He made some sort of comment about me being "Grizzly Adams" and we went about our work, opossums in my pocket and all. When I got home, I put them in this sock, I figured it was close enough to a they look like something out of WhoVille. I haven't really thought this through, I've looked at a few web sites about how to care for orphaned opossums but I really don't know what I'll do when they are grown?? I may just raise them till they are big enough to survive and return them to the wild, somewhere far away from the chicken houses. 

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