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Tuesday, Apr. 21, 2015

The Armadillo -- Sequel

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Bruce Willis made a living out of "Die Hard" movies and all the follow up movies. Our experience with armadillo No. 2 could certainly be labeled in this category.

Two weeks after we dispatched the first armadillo that was wreaking havoc with all the flowerbeds, sure enough, another one appeared on the scene. This one seemed to like the grubs in the yard better. We were trying to establish new grass at the house and his help in tilling the ground was not appreciated.

This time I went with a live trap method. First, I used earthworms for bait with no success. I found a couple of grubs so those were placed in the trap as bait, no luck.

The other method was to be on the lookout about a quarter 'till 10 each night to see if the marauder was at work ruining the yard. I had put all the weapons away so when the wife called and said, "He's out here in the yard," I had to go get the shotgun and some shells. By the time I returned, like armadillo No. 1, he had taken sanctuary under the deck. At this time I left the wife in her nightclothes and robe lying on two towels on the ground shining a flashlight under the deck and giving me a play-by-play of his location.

What we really needed to do was get him out from under the deck, but this one seemed to be enjoying his stay in spite of me yelling and bouncing on the deck near his location. Then we decided to pummel the creature with water from the garden hose and hoped that would irritate him enough to get him moving. My lookout on the lawn said it appeared he was drinking the water that was being sprayed under the deck.

I went back for the rifle and by lying on my side with two lights shining, I was able to hit him in the tail, which seemed to increase his activity. My wife was holding the flashlight on the other edge of the deck and he ran straight toward her. It was all she could do to get out of the way as he ran across the towel she had been lying on leaving, a bit of a blood trail. He ran across the yard in the direction of the garden shed where once again he found sanctuary and seemed unwilling to come out.

After reloading my single-shot, .22 rifle, I took a couple of shots and managed to bring the marauder to a halt. Now the problem was that he was underneath the structure.

By this time we were wet and cold and covered with grass, and my wife said, "What are you going to do with him?" I said, "Well, I'm going to let him rest in peace tonight and then tomorrow I can get a hoe and drag him out."

"Then what are you going to do with him"? She asked.

"Well I saw this movie once, titled 'The Viking,' where Kirk Douglas, the hero of the movie, died and they laid him on a funeral pyre on the deck of the ship and shot a flaming arrow so he could have a burial at sea."

This armadillo's funeral service was a little less grand. After transporting him to the burn pile on the south end of the property, he was laid to rest on top of a series of sticks and wood. With the help of some gasoline, no flaming arrow, we had a cremation.

Dick Hedges
Fort Scott Community College