Author Archives: Jim Muller

Mangy Fox

We spotted a fox in our pasture. It was being dived upon by birds as it appeared to be eating something on the ground – likely a nest. Close examination revealed the fox looked mangy – loss of hair on it’s tail and rib cage; poor overall condition with hip extruding and ribs visible. Apparently there are drugs (like Ivermectin) that treat the mange mites, if one can drug an affected animal.

Hay Elevator, SOLD!

We had a 28′ hay elevator that we used when storing hay for our horses. My Dad had made me aware of the hay elevator which I acquired from a man that was selling hay to barns in NYC. It was a great work saver as previously I would make stacks of bales and lift the bales level by level until I could stack them in the loft. However, once we sold the horses the need for the elevator went away. I stored the hay elevator in the rafters until this week when Eric and I lowered it, dusted it off and gave it a test run. I washed it off and sent pictures to an acquaintance who had expressed and interest. We struck a deal and the deed is done.

Cedar River Flow

Matt and I took a day trip on Cedar River Flow. We saw an eagle and lots of yellow swallowtail butterflies. Black flies were nasty at put in and take out but not on the water.

After lunch we looked at the boggy mess concealing the inlet.
Paddling back we lost our cooling breeze
At the brief break we stood in the water and cooled off.

Picking Strawberries

Kathyrn and I went to Swistak’s U-Pick Strawberries to get berries to freeze for the winter. We got there at 7:50, there were cars pulling in before us and after us,  and there were probably 20 cars already  in the parking lot and lots of people in the fields. However, we were shown quickly to our rows and started picking. The berries were small, some too small to bother picking, kind of like wild strawberries.  And seedy like wild strawberries too.  Many of the berries looked like they could use one more day of sunshine, just not quite ripe.  However,  there were certainly enough berries that we managed to pick 24 quarts in under an hour.  And they are tasty. We spoke with the owner and she said they have a buyer for the place, and agreed to stay 2 years to “mentor” the new owners.  She said the berries were small because that is what happens when the vines get older.  Plus they think the late frost(s) may have gotten some of the buds on the “King strawberry” plants.

Trail Camera Pictures

For my birthday in April Kathryn got a trail camera for me. During this period of lock down it has provided some entertainment and a distraction. I try to position the camera nearby or along our running trails so it can be easily checked. I usually swapped SD cards every other day just because I am interested to see if we got something new. So far there have been lots of deer but also turkey, coyote, rabbits, raccoons, and various birds. Lots of fun!

Painted Turtle Eggs in the Garden

Cullen alerted us to a Painted Turtle laying eggs in our garden. In about an hour she laid eggs, covered them up and traveled roughly 30 yards back to the pond.

The next morning, Cullen remembered the site and, at the first available opportunity, he started digging there. We stopped him, and we don’t think he dug deep enough to disturb the nest (at least we didn’t see any indication there was damage). We erected a nest protection barrier to forestall future invasions. Now we wait 72 days to see what hatches.

Running

On June 6 Kathryn logged her 60th consecutive day of running. She “interval runs” up the hill and then run back. Over time she has extended her distance so that, for the last monthly, I’ve been running over 3 miles on my cross-country route. Every few days she runs a mile on the road for time. So far, knees, ankles, hips, back are all doing OK.

After my electrocardiogram I started running myself – a mile through the woods and occasional runs on the road. So far so good.