Until about five years ago, I believed groundhogs were truly ground animals. They tunneled (or burrowed) under houses, creating great animosity in some of my neighbors, who called the animal shelter gentleman and had the nuisances caught in a live trap and transported to another property. Sometimes the animal control gent couldn’t catch them. One afternoon I watched a mother and two pups climb a mulberry tree to the east of my house. They did so easily. They stayed up there for quite awhile and then came down easily. I think they ate berries, though I didn’t see that. Now I live where I have no groundhogs, just teasing squirrels and quarreling, singing, and busy, busy birds, and a snake and few toads in warm weather. It’s a nice neighborhood but not quite as mixed.
NewsThe Universe Playing Strings, a novel, recently released by the University of New Mexico Press. For details visit R. M. Kinder.