Wednesday, September 5, 2012


I have Search Images that run continuously in my head, they help me spot things that I am interested in.  I have a life-long interest in animals and I'm pretty good at spotting different species as I drive down the road (even when other people miss them).  So let's talk about what I saw today while sitting on my balcony.  I don't get good Internet reception inside my apartment so as today's latest thunderstorm was ending I packed up my PC and hauled it outside.  The rain had just finished and I'm seated in my MIZZOU folding chair and staring over the top of my laptop screen out across the common area of the apartment complex .  In my immediate field of vision is the crest of a little hill to the left of the asphalt pathway that winds thru the Apartment Complex.  I catch a glimpse of something grey moving from right to left (downhill) just past the crest of the hill.  It's longer than it is wide, thick bodied and as it moves the back is hunched and undulates.  I had the good fortune to observe wild animals while on vacation in Florida and my very first thought is...OTTER!  It was not moving like a cat and it was larger than a squirrel.  I'm staring at the spot where it disappeared and I can see squirrels further away and this animal was way bigger than a squirrel.  I have been around and handled ferrets and this animal was heavier than a ferret.  So I'm sitting there chuckling to myself and have just about convinced myself that I mistook a squirrel for an otter when the second one moves into my view from right to left on the same track as the first.  Here is where it gets weird.  The second animal was just as thick at the first one, just as long and moved the same way.  The coat was different though.  The only way I can describe it is...CALICO.  Not kidding.  I have never seen an otter with a coat anything like this.  So there are three choices:

  1. I am crazy and dreamed the whole thing up
  2. I saw a squirrel/ferret being followed by a cat
  3. I saw two otters out on a romp after a thunderstorm

As soon as the second one disappeared below the crest of the hill I jumped up and set my PC down on the footstool in my apartment and grabbed my umbrella and went outside to see if I could get a better look.  As I'm walking up the asphalt path towards the crest of the hill I'm thinking "have they bred Calico Ferrets yet?"  I get to the spot where the two animals disappeared and NOTHING.  I completely circle the apartment  building where they were headed downhill towards and nothing.  No clue, no sighting, nothing.  As I near the woods on the edge of the apartment complex, several squirrels are giving their alarm calls.  Maybe they are upset at something that made it into the woods before I got there.  Maybe they are upset at me.  As I'm walking back to my place I'm doubting myself and thinking, some one's pets have gotten loose.  Maybe they are in the same family as ferrets and that is what I saw.  As I pass the fenced pond on the apartment property I'm thinking there is nothing here that otters would be interested in, no habitat...



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