Saturday, March 4, 2017

Just bits and bobs

Yesterday over at Sarge's Place Juvat regaled us with part two of the tale of the relocated CaliBabe, who seems to fear that Texas will never catch up to her beloved LA.

In part one the woman (Yes, I said "woman." Yes, I'm evil.) decried the lack of roadkill pickeruppers in Texas and hatched a brilliant plan to feed the Lone Star State's sheltered pets with venison (and presumably armadillo).

My contribution to the conversation was to observe that deer run in packs, and it's seldom the first deer that becomes a hood ornament.

I noted that antelope behave in a similar fashion.

By antelope, I mean the Pronghorn Antelope, which isn't a deer, and isn't really an antelope either.

The Pronghorn's scientifical name is Antilocapra americana, or "American antelope goat." If you ever get a look at one up close, you'll be in for a surprise, because they look like no other creature in the planet. With their big, goggly eyes, humpback posture, and completely unique gait, the Pronghorn looks like you'd expect an extraterrestrial animal to look -- like it didn't evolve here. It looks different in part because it's the only surviving member of an ancient family dating back more than 20 million years. There's literally nothing else on the planet like the Pronghorn.

Anyway, there were Pronghorn -- which we unlettered fools simply call antelope -- out and about yesterday while I was checking cows. They seem to love to run, and they seem to enjoy racing the odd motor vehicle. When they feel like playing (I'm anthropomorphizing of course), they'll often run in great big looping circles around the pickup as I drive across the prairie. They seem like they want to race, and they seem to be disappointed that I won't drive fast enough to give them a good challenge. You really can't drive fast on the prairie; you'll end up rolled in a smoking ball. Butt I digress.

I was driving northwest to southeast and the morning sun was in my eyes. I saw the antelope zoom by a few hundred yards to my left, on a reciprocal heading. Which made me think of Juvat's tale. I resolved to pay closer attention to their antics lest I collide with one, though when driving at no more than 30 mph across the shortgrass prairie hitting an antelope is just a silly notion. Silly on stilts even.

So yeah, I wasn't really paying attention. Suddenly, however, a big male Pronghorn dashed across my path from right to left, hunkered down and sprinting. In that moment I began to glance to the right to check for others, and caught a flash of color out of my peripheral vision as dash two crossed behind me. I'd been bounced!

That was a first for me. Didn't get any good pics or video either.

Meanwhile, across the pond in Herefordshire, spring is in the air and across the landscape.

My friend and fellow agriculturalist is in the midst of lambing, and was presented yesterday with a rare lambing puzzle.

It seems that this ewe had apparently lambed several days ago; one morning she was caring for and nursing a newborn lamb. And then yesterday she laid down and gave birth to another pair!

Bit of a head scratcher. Can you guess what happened?

I'll leave you with a couple of interesting images I found posted up on the koobecaf. This one appeared on Defender of the Fatherland Day.

And yeah, that's a real pistol shoved in the little girl's belt. I think it's a Tokarev or a CZ clone.

And this one popped up last week sometime.

Off to check cows. Cheers!


  1. Did they imitate the Squadron Leader at the beginning of Battle of Britain, and call out ATTACK ATTACK ATTACK ATTACK, as they swept by, after giving you a good gunning?

  2. Your breadth of knowledge is astounding. As for the sheep, my ignorance is total.

    Paul L. Quandt

    1. A little bit of experience can often masquerade as knowledge. The nice thing is that with mammals things are very similar in most cases. The fiddly bits are different and those differences are hugely important, but if you know one mammal you know quite a bit about all of them.

  3. P.S. On your poster, the AF guy is missing his pocket protector.


    1. Holy cow, did the Air Force allow pocket protectors to be worn with the uniform?

    2. Only in some AFSCs.


    3. When I think about it, I ruined a lot of white uniform shirts with leaky Skilcraft pens. Don't think I'd have been able to convince myself to use a pocket protector though...