Hawk Eating Vole Contest Winners
Finally. 24 hours after our deadline we have two clear winners for the Hawk Eating Vole Caption Contest. I had to email everyone I knew, even people who don’t know about my secret online life, and beg them to put aside their squeamishness for a higher goal. I think three people took me up on my offer. Thank you especially to the anonymous Texans who rose up to the challenge (and voted for one of their own).
Without further rambling, our winner for the vole’s point of view is Lee with 41.2% of the votes:
Lee was one of the first people who entered my contest way back in May. (Things move slowly on this blog.) Lee, I’ll mail you your Garlic Vampire Repelling Mints. From now on you’ll be safe from the undead.
And the winner for the hawk’s point of view is former blogger Maikopunk with 25% of the votes:
If I had known there was a tiebreaker, I would have given you your Werewolves of Millers Hollow game tonight. Well, I am sure we’ll see each other in a few days. Maybe you could invite me over for more Flight of the Conchords?
Thank you everyone for contributing captions and for voting. I bought prizes for the next contest, which, um, I guess has to happen.
For now, I am taking the rest of the weekend off – museum folks work weekends unfortunately. So no blogging until Monday. Ciao!
‘Twas a Rat
That’s what the “guess the dead animal” animal was. Very close to where I found May’s dead rat.
I am deducing two things from this: one, this area is full of rats, hence the evidence in the form of dead rats; second, that these rats are lackadaisical about their lives. I don’t see quite so many dead rats on my walks in other parts of town. My dead rats must be so much in love with living that they never see death until it’s too late.
Hawk Eating Vole Caption Contest
Can you come up with a better caption? Add yours to the comments. (We’ll vote on them later.) As for a prize, first place gets a hamster postcard drawn by yours truly sent directly to you (update: or another TBD prize, your choice).
Photographer Steve Jurvetson, whose photo you see above (minus the word balloon), got an email from a biologist explaining that the bird in question is juvenile red-tailed hawk while hapless rodent is the California meadow vole (Microtis californicus).
Rats with Awful Peripheral Vision
I always thought rats were smart and wary. They might be but their peripheral vision sure sucks.
During tonight’s walk, a rat saw me coming, ran away down the sidewalk, and was shocked to find out I was still trailing it. It veered off into the bushes at the side of the road. Of course, I stopped, trying to let my eyes adjust to the dark so I could get a better look at this urban wildlife specimen.
Then the rat, mistakenly thinking I had dispersed, comes out of the bushes, looks up at me, gasps and runs back into the bushes in a panic.
Dear Mr. Rat, I am sorry that you couldn’t spot the big hulk of a human sneaking up on you. I wasn’t even trying. That’s the sad part. Let me give you some advice. A few weeks ago, I saw one of your fellow rats. This is what it looked like:
Its poor dessicated remains were not far from where we met tonight. Please be careful, Mr. Rat. There are owls, raccoons and coyotes around there. This could happen to you. I’m giving you this advice, Mr. Rat, because I believe that, deep down, you are some whizkid chef. And you deserve a chance.
Guinea Pig Casualty
Munich’s Museum of Man and Nature scored Bruno the Bear’s taxidermied remains, displayed by taxidermist Dieter Schoen at “being disturbed by people while stealing honey from bee hives to show his potential danger” (as quoted from this BBC article). In 2006, I blogged about how poor Bruno, or JJ1, is the result of a poor candidate for motherhood. Bruno was shot dead on June 26, 2006.
This bear is not Bruno.
I knew that Bruno dabbled in sheep and rabbit menus. I had no idea there were other animals involved. Specifically, I didn’t realize there were Incan rodents with a penchant for timothy hay involved in the Bruno saga. Here’s Bruno’s more complete list of exploits:
He upset farmers, breaking into bee hives and eating 30 sheep, four rabbits and a guinea pig.
Chuy is disgusted.
It Cries Like a Puppy
Thursday July 05th 2007, 5:08 am
Filed under: Rodentia
This just in: my friend Ryan sent me an email about the origins of Dramatic Chipmunk. Turns out it’s in showbiz in Japan.
In all its glory, here is the pre-fame Dramatic Chipmunk.
It’s the Dramatic Chipmunk.
(Thank you, Moofie.)
Update: Many people have noticed a resemble of the so-called “chipmunk” to Alfred Hitchcock.