Somebody gave me a Cascade Hop rizhome last year. I planted it under the kid’s above-ground playhouse (no trees, so I built a playhouse on old powerpoles, about 7 feet up). Used to be a sandbox, but since repurposed as a garden. About 8’x 8’. It actually sprouted last summer and vines grew up the crappy plastic stuff I hung up. No biggie.
This year? Holy Shit! A massive canvase of hops growing up the side of the fort. And nice, big hoppy cones! I had to go and watch Youtube about how to harvest and dry them. Think I got a handle on it. Super stoked to be able to brew beer with my very own homegrown hops! I start plucking in the next couple days/weeks. Still a little “green”.
Which brings us to Coyotes. Goddamn bastards are thick and active round these parts lately. Fuckin’ linesteppers, digging under the fences, killing chickens, menacing the livestock and being general assholes.
Damn near lost my two little girl dogs a week or so ago. They got off the beaten track from our normal run and my favorite dog got attacked and bitten on the ass by a dirty coyote. I was lucky and saw what went down and was able to haul ass backwards and effect a rescue, but DAMN! Too close! The “normal run” has been modified, as we know it.
If you live in an area know to have a coyote problem and you have coyote-snack-sized animals (cat, dog, child, whatever), it’s imperative that you do what you can to ensure that potential coyote snack doesn’t become actual coyote snack. Please keep your pups leashed, inside, or supervised in an outdoor kennel.
Coyotes are remarkably resilient. We’re pretty sure our SUV hit one last year on Rt 80 at highway speed, and the damn thing bounced off and ran elsewhere. Broke the bumper though.*
*(One of our Super Genius ex-govs thought they’d lower the garbage can dumping raccoon population and had them introduced into the state. Same ding-bat was promoted to the DEP and lied to Congress saying the air at ground zero was “clean”. Vote for any ex-NJ gov At Your Peril.)
I’m not sure if walking your dogs while armed is allowed by you.
Then again, I’m not convinced its safe to walk them any other way. In a large enough pack, coyotes might not stop at eating your dogs… and to them?
Almost lost the male earlier this year. Took him up to the top of a hill and let him do his dig and hunt stuff while I sat in the Jeep and listened to the radio. He was about 12 feet away, off to the right. I caught some motion out of the corner of my eye and turned around to see 2 coyotes about 12 feet behind the Jeep! I started shouting, and jumped out, they took off and my dumb-ass dog takes off after them! Another close one. I had to run back to the Jeep and sail down a rocky hill after him. Tore it up a little.
I used to carry the .22 with me and shoot cans while the dogs dug and hunted for mice and stuff. The gunfire keeps the coyotes away. Then ammo got scarce and I stopped shooting.
I got lucky and found a couple boxes of .22LR and am carrying it again, among other coyote-repelling activity.
I find it hard to believe that coyotes needed to be introduced to New Jersey as recently as 1990’s (I’m guessing, don’t know the Gov. but the ground zero comment puts it in that era). They have been expanding their territory quite nicely without intervention. There are so many in New Hampshire, there is no closed season. From January first through March, they can be hunted at night.