Raccoon Update XIX - All are welcome in the Critter Cafe


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Message 1472675 - Posted: 4 Feb 2014, 11:55:08 UTC

Bovine spongiform encephalopathy.


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Message 1472909 - Posted: 5 Feb 2014, 5:34:34 UTC

Only if these are European raccoons.

Could be...

I've read that raccoons were imported to Germany a few decades ago to be farmed for their pelts. Turned out not to be a lucrative endeavor and the raccoons were set free. Now they are an invasive exotic wreaking havoc in a country where they most certainly did not evolve.

I have also read that Japan has a raccoon problem as well. Because raccoons look so darn cute, they were imported to Japan as potential pets. Raccoons make really lousy indoor pets. Enough failed pets were loosed into "the wild" that now there are breeding populations on several of the Japanese islands. The raccoons are destroying ancient Japanese wooden temples that are important historic and cultural icons.

Much as I love my "little woodland friends", they can be terrible and destructive little pests and they really should not be imported out of North America.

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Message 1472957 - Posted: 5 Feb 2014, 8:11:14 UTC

You gave us Raccoons, we gave you wild Boars. I will take a Raccoon any day over the destruction Boars can cause.
They are good eating tho.
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Message 1473035 - Posted: 5 Feb 2014, 13:44:48 UTC

And as the serious bird watchers know, Europe gave North America starlings and house sparrows. Humans can be so dumb sometimes.
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Message 1473044 - Posted: 5 Feb 2014, 14:18:33 UTC - in response to Message 1473035.

And as the serious bird watchers know, Europe gave North America starlings and house sparrows. Humans can be so dumb sometimes.

Well you can send the sparrows back, they have declined by up to 90% in London since the late 70's

I for one miss seeing them!
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Message 1473088 - Posted: 5 Feb 2014, 15:52:09 UTC

I am all of a Twitcher!

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Message 1473167 - Posted: 6 Feb 2014, 5:25:05 UTC

What is doing in the sparrows of London? Cats? Street and garden tree reductions?

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Message 1473178 - Posted: 6 Feb 2014, 5:53:43 UTC - in response to Message 1473167.

Perhaps it is Raccoons?
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Message 1473218 - Posted: 6 Feb 2014, 8:43:00 UTC - in response to Message 1473167.
Last modified: 6 Feb 2014, 8:43:15 UTC

What is doing in the sparrows of London? Cats? Street and garden tree reductions?

Well they are not sure but this from the Wiki

In Great Britain, populations peaked in the early 1970s, but have since declined by 68% overall,and about 90% in some regions. In London, the House Sparrow almost disappeared from the central city. The numbers of House Sparrows in the Netherlands have dropped in half since the 1980s, so the House Sparrow is even considered an endangered species. This status which came to widespread attention after a female House Sparrow, referred to as the "Dominomus", was killed after knocking down dominoes arranged as part of an attempt to set a world record. These declines are not unprecedented, as similar reductions in population occurred when the internal combustion engine replaced horses in the 1920s and a major source of food in the form of grain spillage was lost.
Various causes for the dramatic decreases in population have been proposed, including predation, in particular by Eurasian Sparrowhawks; electromagnetic radiation from mobile phones;and diseases. A shortage of nesting sites caused by changes in urban building design is probably a factor, and conservation organisations have encouraged the use of special nest boxes for sparrows. A primary cause of the decline seems to be an insufficient supply of insect food for nestling sparrows. Declines in insect populations result from an increase of monoculture crops, the heavy use of pesticides,the replacement of native plants in cities with introduced plants and parking areas,and possibly the introduction of unleaded petrol, which produces toxic compounds such as methyl nitrite.


But mostly due to us humans.

I walk in my local park most every day and I see Robins (UK variety) Wrens, Blackbirds, Pigeons, Magpies, Rooks, Crows, Jays, the occasional Kestrel and of course loads of Green Indian ring necked parrots but hardly ever see a sparrow.
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Message 1473289 - Posted: 6 Feb 2014, 14:32:48 UTC

I am sitting here looking at a flock of house sparrows jostling for position at my window feeder, and I am stunned. House sparrows easily outnumber all other species combined at our feeders, all year round. Here in southern Ontario they are an urban species, and are accused of crowding out native birds (including several other species of native sparrows).

We have all the same bird issues here in urban areas - predators, lack of feed and nesting sites, etc. Yet the house sparrow thrives. Makes what is going on in Europe a real mystery.
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Message 1473854 - Posted: 7 Feb 2014, 19:46:06 UTC
Last modified: 7 Feb 2014, 19:55:40 UTC

Sparrows (what particular type they are I do not know) seem to be doing well in my Northern California backyard as well.

I really like birds... not as much as I like raccoons of course! But still, birds do have that dinosaur-decendent-street-cred vibe going on, so what's not to love?

Eric is not at all entranced with California birds. When it comes to birds, he is a total state-snot. Ok, ok, I'll admit that the birds I see in Northern Wisconsin tend to be a whole lot more colorful than the birds that frequent my backyard feeder. Eric likes to sneer, "Oh look, another non-descript brown birdie" when I feed my fine feathered friends. I ignore him. The color of our California birds is perfectly adapted to the color of our rolling golden hills.

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Message 1473861 - Posted: 7 Feb 2014, 19:54:46 UTC

Wot on earth is a state-snot???

Honestly, you two reprobates have missed your vocation. You could trounce George & Gracie, or Desi & Lucy, any time :-))

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Message 1473867 - Posted: 7 Feb 2014, 19:59:29 UTC

The USA is very large and the terrain is quite varied. I grew up here in California. Eric grew up in a region of our country that is very, very, very different from California. A state-snot is a person who thinks that his/her state of origin surpasses the other 49 states in every qualitative way.

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Message 1473870 - Posted: 7 Feb 2014, 20:02:45 UTC
Last modified: 7 Feb 2014, 20:03:15 UTC

Ah I see. Much like, one of any consequence lives in the Stockbroker belt of Surrey old chap.

A new bit of Americanese for my collection :-))

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Message 1473874 - Posted: 7 Feb 2014, 20:06:56 UTC - in response to Message 1473854.

rolling golden hills


Don't you mean your s*** brown hills?
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Message 1473877 - Posted: 7 Feb 2014, 20:09:37 UTC - in response to Message 1473874.

rolling golden hills


Don't you mean your s*** brown hills?


See what I mean???!!! State-snot!

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Message 1473883 - Posted: 7 Feb 2014, 20:16:24 UTC
Last modified: 7 Feb 2014, 20:20:28 UTC

Well talking about colourful birds, there are always these.

This back garden backs onto my local park;



Indian green parrots that have either escaped or been set free have flourished in the English countryside.

There is a large flock in the park.

PS This pick was taken on 28th December last year
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Message 1473886 - Posted: 7 Feb 2014, 20:18:54 UTC

On our last annual visit to Point Pelee for the spring bird migration, we met a couple from the San Francisco area who had travelled several thousand miles just to see some birds with colour. They gave us a long list of colourful local birds they hoped to see "before we die". I didn't have the heart to tell them that they could have skipped the crowds and line ups and fees at Point Pelee, and knocked off most of their list in one afternoon sitting on our back deck.
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Message 1473887 - Posted: 7 Feb 2014, 20:19:43 UTC - in response to Message 1473874.

rolling golden hills


Don't you mean your s*** brown hills?

Go fix the new Android Beta app!

;)
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Message 1473889 - Posted: 7 Feb 2014, 20:20:21 UTC

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