Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Page 123

Zilla tagged me in attempt to get my lazy self to post. It worked. I couldn't resist.

Hmmmm. I try not to have any books in my office and for this one time in my life what I attempted and reality is close to the same. I do have one, though. My mother just gave it to my son. Unfortunately, it is a coffee table book and contains beautiful photographs of the Sahara for the most part. There is no writing on page 123, but on page 124 I took this excerpt:
The presence of vegetation, even if sparse and scattered, is an essential condition for the survival of animals. However, endemic Sahara species are rare: no sedentary birds and only three of the sixty-five mammal species are endemic (the fennec, the gerbil, and the addax antelope), along with six reptiles and about a dozen insect species.

Sahara by Paolo Novaresio and Gianni Guadalupi

I always assumed gerbils came from a pet store. I never thought about them being a native species of anywhere, much less the completely harsh environs of the Sahara.

I once had a roommate with a gerbil. This annoying, squeaky wheel turning, escape artist made my life miserable for an entire summer until I ousted both the roommate and the gerbil at the convenient semester beginning purge. I was ever so thankful. Call me crazy, but I just don't like rodents, even if they are supposed to be cute, crawling on me in the night. I can see the girl and her gerbil, but cannot for the life of me remember their names.

Thanks Zilla for the kick, the interesting information, and the resulting college memory.


Susan T. said...

Oh, gosh, gerbils. I used them once in a science-fair project in high school, and they bit me every chance they got. I could not wait to return them to the pet store!

I hope you'll post often, Wisteria! I always like hearing what's happenin' on the farm. When are the Louisiana strawberries due in?

Our new hen, a white-crested black Polish, is now laying. Yay! So we have brown eggs from the Blue Orpington and white ones from her. The rooster moved to the country.

Wisteria said...

I should be back for good.

The first Louisiana strawberries have started arriving. They aren't Jamberries yet. Have you read that book? Jamberry

Congrats on your eggs. I like having a mix of white and brown. We are getting turkeys next week because we are oh so crazy.

ZILLA said...

I was telling my mother earlier today, we need to send all the unwanted gerbils and hamsters to Vermont, where she lives. Every day I speak with my mother, she reports another daytime owl sighting. Apparently, due to this winter's severe weather, the owls are now hunting during daylight hours. She's seen the barred owl snatch chickadees from the air, three days in a row, and her dentist is reporting the same sort of thing.

He says owls will hunt during the day if they're truly starving.

My mom's dentist is the founder of the Vermont Institute of Natural Science. He had been rehabilitating raptors in his home and his wife got fed up with it, so he founded the institute, which has grown into a beautiful facility.

See how much I've missed you? You mention the Sahara, and I go off about owls.

As much as I'd like to have you over for a chat, I'm so glad you weren't here this evening when I fumbled the guinea pig cage. Mr Squeakers escaped and made a dash for the laundry room. It took me a while to coax him out from behind the washer and re-secure him in his habitat. I don't much care to handle him, to tell the truth, but the Eenas would shoot me if they came home to a missing Mr Squeakers!

I assumed you hadn't been posting due to being busy, not lazy! Tsk!!

ZILLA said...


Oh, dear me suds!

m~ said...

Gerbils!?! Ugh! I'm not much of a rodent person. I do love my chickens though. We are getting about 6 eggs a day. 1 green one (Americana) and 1 dark brown (Maran). The others should start laying soon!
We had snow yesterday, the girls wouldn't come out of the hen house. We're supposed to get more tomorrow. I think they're ready for spring.
Glad your posting again. Keep us up-to-date on what's going on at the farm. I miss Mississippi!

Angela said...

I've missed yoU!! So good to see your post. Funny, we had a similar epiphany, albeit regarding guinea pigs. It is hard to imagine those docile little critters living in the wild!
BTW, we have had all the rodents, and wouldn't spend the time or money on any but the guinea, who is quiet, snuggly, and relatively clearn

Susan T. said...

Turkeys! How great is that! Now if you tell me you are getting peacocks, I will keel over with jealousy.

I love Jamberry; that was one of Jr.'s first books. We won't get our local strawberries until mid-June. Dang. A long time to wait. I will have to tell my parents to be on the lookout for the La. ones.

I know that raptor center in Vermont. Woodstock, right? My sister-in-law lives nearby.

Wisteria said...

My mom had peacocks for years. I won't have any - ever, though they are beautiful. The roosting on the roof and screaming at night is more than I can handle. Our roosters are bad enough.

Raptors I can handle. Aren't they wonderful. Even when a hawk pulled one of my hens off her nest of just hatching chicks and killed her, I couldn't help think how majestic he looked. I've always been smitten with predators.

I'm not scared of rodents, just don't want them scratching around in my bed at night or running nowhere on a squeaky wheel all night long only to sleep all day. Now that I know gerbils are desert creatures, I realize the night life was programmed from birth.

I wish I had a green egg layer.

Kate in NJ said...

My nieces got a hamster when they lived with us, they moved back with their Mom, he stayed..I got quite used to him, he only left his big cage when I had him hop in the little cage to clean the big cage and he was very sweet.Naturally I was the one who cared for the little bugger..I was the only one who voted no on rodents moving in.;-)