Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Bobbing for Goldfish

A long time ago, Hal and I found a video of a fennec fox fishing for fish on YouTube. We decided sometime we should try it with our ferrets! We finally did it!

A while ago, when I was buying fishes for Archimedes, we decided to see what the ferrets would do with goldfish...
Hal put up some pictures of it here, on his blog. It was absolutely hilarious! I wish we'd had a video camera to record it!

The funniest thing is Rocket hates water! When I give him a bath, you'd think I was murdering him! But give him a bowl full of water with things moving in it and he'll dive right in! He's hilarious! Garrett seriously thought about it, but he decided it was not a game for him! Cocoa looked like she wanted to, but couldn't figure out how it was done... (It wasn't that complicated!) Maybe next time they'll play, too!

When Rocket would catch a fish, he'd shake it good (to make sure it's dead, then run off and stash it in some corner somewhere. (Yuck.) So I'd have to go pick up tiny dead fish. It did occur to me he might have been saving them for later, but I decided the my ewww outweighed his plans.

Hal kept trying to get a picture of him with a fish in his mouth, but he moves so darn fast!


I have a red eared slider turtle, Archimedes, who likes to eat little fishes. For a little while I was buying them at the pet store, but then we moved into this house where we are now, and there is a drainage ditch that runs right behind our house. It occured to me one day that there were probably little minnows in the living the in the ditch water.
The water level goes up and down, depending on if it's rained recently or not. In this picture it had been raining off and on for a couple of days, so the water level was kind of high. During a break in the storms, I walked up and snapped a picture. (Our house is the last gray one, right before the green one on the end.)

One day, I decided to try my luck at "fishing." So, with my butterfly net (purchased for this specific purpose), and my handy pickle jar (also used for catching frogs) I headed on down. I caught a whole bunch of little fishes and ghost shrimp! Archimedes loved the ghost shrimp!

I carefully crouch on the concrete sides and scoop with my net in the water. I say carefully 'cause it's actually fairly steep, I think to discourage people from playing on it, and I don't want to fall in! It looks slimy and gross!

A little while later, after a few more big storms, I went to go down a fish again, 'cause Archimedes was getting low on fishes. Everything was going so well! I had caught lots of fishes, I was having fun, and contemplating maybe puddling in the water to scare up a frog or two... When I happened to notice that there was a brown dead puppy floating in the water coming towards me! So, I went home. And didn't go back again for quite some time... Ewwww!

I like the fish that live in the water. And the turtles. And the frogs (lots and lots of frogs!).
I can deal with the funky smells that come from the ditch. And the moss. And the mosquitoes.
But I draw the line at dead animals!
The sad thing is the puppy looked just like some puppies that my neighbor had and was trying to get rid of... I'm not suggesting anything, just mentioning... It's either a tragic accident or a cruel person... It makes me sad just thinking of it...

Monday, November 2, 2009

He does stairs!

Ferrets, we've read, have no depth perception (because their eyes are on the sides of their heads), consequently, they don't judge distance well.

Rocket loves to explore our house. And me, being the indulgent ferret owner I am, sometimes let him. One of the days he was exploring the upstairs, he encountered this really scary thing... A drop off! After much deliberation -- about 2 seconds of walking back and forth at the top of precipice, he decided to try hopping off it, just to see where it went I guess. He repeated this process again and again...
...the whole way to the bottom of the staircase. I scooped him up at the bottom and took him back up. After I carried him back up, a bit later he tore down the stairs again. Apparently in taking him back up so quickly, I'd reassured him he NEEDED to be down there! There must be something great!

Almost any chance he gets he darts down the stairs...

He goes down a bit like this:
He hops down by the wall with the railing, the whole way to the bottom of the last strait stair, where he walks across to the other wall, and goes down.
It's funny 'cause I walk down by the railing and step over (but only to the center) when I get to the bottom of the straight stair, too! I do it so I don't miss the triangle stair. His reason? Insanity?
This is a rough diagram of his steps on the bottom stairs. After switching walls to follow on the last strait stair and hopping down, he follows the wall 'til he hits the corner, and realizes he can't step down there, walks over to the center of the stair and hops down, then back to the wall, and for some reason then has to walk back to the center of the stair to hop down to the floor. Where he is then free to walk over to the wall by the door OR dart off straight across the floor trying to make it to the kitchen before I can catch him!

He's such a hoot! He has this thing with following the walls. He'll only walk across the center of a strange room when he gets really excited! He seems to forget he likes the walls. When he stops hopping around, he runs back to the wall...

As a little note: I feel it's important to know that my ferrets do have their own room in our three bedroom house where they get to get out of their cage to play. I block off the doorway (or close the door) so they can't escape, and they get to play for hours. (In a perfect world they'd be supervised at all times out of their cage. They are. Sometimes.)