Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Meet Harold

Three times now I've caught a woodpecker drilling a hole into the side of my cabin. Now, I'm pretty 'live and let live' when it comes to critters. I let the voles pick through the outflow of my kitchen water for food scraps. I let spiders build webs on my eaves and shed. Pretty much the only critters I cannot abide are mosquitoes and wasps, except for the occasional fly that comes inside, which I squish. But a woodpecker drilling a hole into my cabin ain't right! Enter Harold the Hoot Owl:

Unfortunately, I can't put batteries into Harold because batteries fail quickly in cold weather, but I put him up yesterday, and I think he looks fantastically real, don't you?

Speaking of little critters, yesterday I met a person from the Institute of Arctic Biology who studies hibernation in arctic ground skwerls. I got to meet one:

Arctic ground skwerls are true hibernators. Unlike bears, whose hibernation is closer to our sleeping, arctic ground skwerls shut down most of their bodily functions, their metabolic rate approaches that of death, and they need almost nothing to sustain themselves. Their body temperatures drop below freezing. Little dewd felt just like a dead body when I held him.

Isn't he something?


b said...

awwwwwwww........ OK, now THAT needs to go on cute overload!

Anonymous said...

What would batteries do for Harold? Give him cool laser beam eyes?!

Arvay said...

Yup; he has a motion sensor, and he would hoot and flash his eyes when something comes near. :)

mdr said...

Which side is the creature's head?