Sunday, January 5, 2014

Animal Neighbors...

You do remember the deer I met upon moving in my "Little Schoenbrunn"?
Not the only member of our extended animal neighborhood!
Shortly after myself I moved in Gwynnie - I will give you her story another day - the most social cat ever. Gwynnie enjoyed the company of all our animal neighbors - and they hers for some reason.
Thus I got to see all of them - playing, watching or just lounging in each others reach - right in front of my window.
 I remember when one of my cousins came to visit from the States, she basked happily in the sun falling in through my open window facing back to the cemetery (as all of my windows do). I was peacefully preparing our coffee when she suddenly let out a rather high pitched shout - ok I hadn't warned her as it was a natural sight to me - "there's a fox strolling across the lawn up there!"
I assume she was a little bit disappointed at my rather low key disinterested "I know" - not even joining her at the window to exclaim over her extraordinary discovery...
It didn't take more than a few seconds when she wailed that my "cat is running after the fox!"
As I didn't come to the rescue there either (for which one - the cat or the fox?!), the next came out as barely a whisper: "Oh, there's a rabbit following them..."
I believe after the coffee and cookies where ready.
When foxmom had her cubs, I decided to get a video camera - I proofed rather untalented, but thus I not only have a little video clip of Gwynnie (I never used the camera again ;)), but also some footage of our first foxbabies (videos follow!)
Foxmom was quite demanding in her ways: While the cubs where young she would either just sit as long outside our windows for one of her babysitters to look out and stay with the little ones so she could go over to the cemetery to find dinner for herself, but should we not show on our own, she was certain to train us to follow her high pitched little bark - she also reverted to that when all windows where closed of course ;)
Usually after the foxbabies we had badgers - mom and two or three cubs - and after them the den obviously needed a thorough airing and thus was deserted for the next year, before another future family got started there.
As for birds - many kestrels, sparrows, extremely intelligent crows (knocking to get food), squirrels that had breakfast with the neighbors upstairs at their table (and one extremely aggressive squirrel that tried to kill me once - another story), hedgehogs and orphaned babymice (the later two collected and placed safely in her bed to take care of them) and miniature bats. These have only been introduced to me last summer by my new cat Momo who got a kick of carrying them in and then letting go to watch me trying to catch those poor creatures flying blindly in the bright light (only to having to protect them for the day after all my earlier troubly as you're only to let them go at night).
Oh btw - foxbabies who have known you as their babysitter, have absolutely no respect: Last summer he had a robbing spray throughout my kitchen...