Saturday, July 16, 2011

It Truly Is The End Of The World As We Knew It

God, the Gods, Mother Nature, the Universe, aliens from beyond our galaxy, or The Force all have my consent to obliterate the earth and all life upon it. I surrender mankind to forces greater than I, greater than all of us, for the good of the rest of all creation. Maybe, after viewing this video, you will feel likewise. Anyway, it will be, or should be, obvious why I think we no longer deserve to carry on as the race of mankind and why maybe the whole planet should go with us to oblivion for having allowed us to survive as long as it took for it all to come to this:



What a friggin crying shame that we have become that confused as to the very nature and essence of our being!

Of course, I don't really want mankind to be wiped out or the world to be disintegrated but I have to tell you that if God showed up on a chariot of fire, throwing lightning bolts of destruction and was accompanied by the horsemen of the Apocalypse looking to annihilate us all, I would understand why they showed up at this point in time and would, as well, understand exactly why they were so pissed off at us.

Adieu,
Glenn B

From Compost Heap, To Worm, To Frog (or whatever else I feed with them) and Back to Fred

Not too long ago, I posted about my compost heap - Fred the Compost Pile. I described some of his aspects and let you know how I knew he was healthy. You may recall that one of the best signs of health about a compost pile are that it is full of life. My compost pile is loaded with all sorts of insects, bugs and worms and I suppose with a lot of helpful bacteria. During the warmer months, I make it a habit to collect earthworms of one sort or another from within the depths of Fred and from a few other areas around my small garden where leaf liter builds up and eventually decomposes.

I put those worms to good use. For instance, today I collected about 50 worms within 10 minutes. I probably passed up at least another 50. After collecting them, I brought them inside and fed them to my various critters. well, actually, before going inside, I gave a couple to my tortoises that were outside enjoying the sunny not too warm day. One of my Redfoot Torts gobbled up a few by himself. Even my male Hermann's Tortoise, which usually shies away from worms, took half of a big one today. Then it was onto inside to feed my turtle, frogs, salamanders, newts and fish. They all got a good share of them.

Female African Clawed Frog,
click it to big it.
The male and female African Clawed Frogs got 2 apiece. They can really gobble them down although today the male swam around for several minutes with part of his second worm protruding from his mouth. Eventually though he shoved it down into his belly. Those frogs can be ravenous. That they eat well shows in how much they have grown. The male was probably small as one of my thumbnails around when my son brought it home. Now it is about 3 inches long, snout to vent length, and much bigger around than he was when we first got him. The female was probably 3 to 3.5 inches long, svl , when I got her. She is now at least 4 inches long and a lot bigger around too. They love to eat, and it shows. They especially seem to like earthworms although they have eaten guppies, mosquito fish, different bugs, dry pellet tropical fish food, and the male has eaten a few of my tropical fish (at least when I had him in the fish tank, the frogs now have their own tank). They also have eaten lots of those earthworms.

Male African Clawed Frog,
click it to big it.
I try to not overfeed them and usually give them food only about 4 to 5 times per week. One worm could probably last them a good couple to a few days without them growing much. At the rate I feed them they eat well, the water does not foul (yes the water is also filtered) and they grow but do not grow too fast or become overweight. When fish, like guppies or mosquito fish, are in their tank, they have a ready food source that they must catch but that is usually not to easy to catch.fords the frogs some exercise. They do not overly excite or scare the fish in their setup, I guess because they are sort of ambush hunters, and creep up ever so slowly then pounce, or just wait for a fish to swim close enough and then pounce. If the fish make it past a week, they are given a reprieve and I remove them to the tropical tank when I do a partial water change on the frog tank.


I am hopeful that by mid winter or early next spring, the frogs may be large enough and ready to breed. There eggs will serve a couple of purposes. First off, I will incubate at least half of them. The other half may just be thrown into other tanks as food for my fish and other amphibians. From the eggs that hatch, I will likely raise at least 1/2 of the tadpoles to maturity. The others may also be used as food for my tropical fish and other amphibians and my turtle. Nothing will be wasted.


When I say nothing will be wasted, I pretty much mean it. I take old water from my tanks and sometimes use it to water my garden and to water the compost pile. There are a lot of built up bacteria and nitrates (almost no nitrites) in that water from the decomposing bits of plant material and fish food. I siphon as much of that stuff withthe water each week and throw it on the pile now and then when I remember to do it. In addition, I take any excess plants that have grown in 2 of my tanks and throw them onto Fred as well. I don't know if Fred appreciates it or not, he is not the talkative type of trash heap as you may see on TV, but the bacteria, bugs, insects and worms in him sure do seem to like it as they are all thriving. While the compost pile is not sustained solely by stuff from the fish and amphibian tanks, what does come from them and goes onto the heap helps it to decompose. In the long run, that waste fouled aquarium water helps produce the worms that the frogs, amphibians and turtles will again eventually turn into more matter to decompose on the heap. Such is the circle of life for Fred and my frogs and other critters.


All the best,
Glenn B

On Homeowners Being Armed: It Was Oh-Dark-Thirty, the Dogs Were Barking...

...and I told them to shut up; I wanted back to sleep. Then they started barking and mixed in the deeper than usual sounding barks with deep down growling and there was no shutting them up. I got up and grabbed the nearest available firearm and headed upstairs from my man-cave resting spot to see what was amiss if anything. The two big dogs were at the front window, growling as if a Zombie, or a pack of wolves, was milling around the front of our house. The little dogs upstairs were barking too. I have not seen them that intense in a long, long time, in fact maybe never before. So I cautiously approached the side doorway on my way upstairs and gave a quick peak or two, then gave a good long scan, then I did the windows in the kitchen and dining room, then in the living room where the dogs were still at it. I wanted to make sure I missed nothing or no one on my way to the scene of the mayhem.

Once in the living room, just let them keep barking and I cautiously peeled back on of the curtains just a bit and took a look. Nothing. Then I looked out the other window, the one facing front, expecting to see an opossum. I got a surprise, there was a young man standing there on the sidewalk, next to the small strip of grass at curbside, and next to one of our cars, facing the car, looking pretty intent of some evil deed - like maybe stealing one of the cars. Suddenly he stumbled a bit. Just then, I saw a quick flash of something glistening in the moonlight and streetlight, it was long and thin and down around - well just a bit below his waist. Relief for both of us! I guess he was pretty drunk; he was taking a pit stop, right there on the sidewalk but apparently onto the grass and I was not happy about it but put at ease.

I have got to hand it to the dogs though, they got me up with a possible intruder in the area - they sure had a different bark than usual as when it is just an opossum or a cat or a drunk stumbling by. I imagine that was because the guy was not just passing by but standing there while he did his thing. As it was, once he was done, he stumbled onward to wherever he was headed in his less than coherent state of mind. Hopefully he made it there before letting it all hang out again in public. I could have opened the door, stuck my head out and admonished him but figured what the heck, why wake up the neighbors for a drunk and why maybe start a fight over something so pissant (oh the pun of it all). I guess that was because I remembered being there pretty much in that same situation when that young and that drunk. Piss drunk was what we used to call it, because you would pee anywhere although it was most appropriately called that though when you peed in your pants. At least he got it out of his pants and into the grass. A quick look this morning revealed one other 'at least', at least he did not get it on our car.

All is well and the gun stayed silent, out of sight, with finger off the trigger, muzzle pointed in a safe direction at all times, not retrieved until I was awake enough to do so and - imagine this - not one soul was injured by the gun toting homeowner whom the ultra leftists fear so much as being some sort of maniacal vigilante. Had it been someone who was in the act of breaking and entering and intent on doing us harm, well then it may well have been a very different story. In either case - I was prepared, ready, willing and capable of doing whatever might need to be done and I did what I chose to do both safely and sensibly. I would do it much the same in the event our dogs ever again become that agitated at something outside our home.

By the way, had he been trying to steal one of our cars, I might have given a shout to cease and desist out the window but I probably would also have called the cops instead of going outside alone. Who knows, maybe I would also have decided to let the dogs out just then too. That could have proven quite interesting but as I said, he turned out to be pretty harmless and pissant at worst!

All the best,
Glenn B