"Self-sufficiency does not mean 'going back' to the acceptance of a lower standard of living. On the contrary, it is the striving for a higher standard of living, for food that is organically grown and good, for the good life in pleasant surroundings... and for the satisfaction that comes from doing difficult and intricate jobs well and successfully." John Seymour ~ Self Sufficiency 2003

Sunday, 9 February 2014

"Expected" visitors


I swear the visible reminders of our origins keep a calendar.  I would never have imagined that they would be as punctual as it would appear they are.  It is almost a year to the day since they last visited.

The ramshackle house near our gate was sold last year.  The new owners have knocked down most of the house - it was an accident waiting to happen.  Not surprising really as it was over 100 years old and had absolutely no foundations - the wear and tear was evident in the cracks clearly visible in the walls.

The new owner, JK, wasted no time in rebuilding on the exact footprint - plus a little extra...

... I wondered whether the new construction would deter the yearly visitors from the nearby mountains, or would they take it all in the swing of things?
Can you see the visitor?
In the pic above you can see the lookout - perched on the apex of the roof.  A male baboon posted to keep watch whilst the rest of the troop had some fun.

Turns out they didn't object to the new building - in fact it gave them more of an opportunity to have some good, clean fun.  They thoroughly enjoyed sliding up and down the galvanized sheeting, sitting on and swinging from the solar geyser, and running and leaping from roof to wall to pergola support wall, and back again...
Here is a close up
Once again, my simple Kodak camera is not really up to the task, but it tries. This is a close up of the visitor.

They didn't linger this time - what with all the building work and disturbance, the fruit tree didn't bare any fruit.  Or did the builders scoff it before the baboons had the opportunity?
If you click on this photo you may be able to see
the large number of baboons - any dark speck
you see on the field is a baboon
When the troop of baboons left they had a frolic in the nearby field.  RMan counted 45+ - the troop has certainly grown since last year.

They didn't attempt to visit our plot, thank goodness.  In fact, when I took a wander down to our gate to get a close-up photo, they scarpered in a flash. Always good to know that they are still wild, and not accustomed to being fed by humans.  Once that happens they can be an absolute pest - and my home grown veggies / fruit trees wouldn't stand a chance...

22 comments:

Vicki said...

How fun is that - to be able to watch a troop of baboons. As long as you are watching them do something besides dining in your garden! Reminded me of watching the wild life in northern Minnesota, many years ago. The white tail deer would come out onto the fields from the woods to feed in the evenings. Several times I watched the fawns jump and turn and dance in the first snowfall they ever saw. Now and then I would see a black bear back in the woods. These days, the only wild life I see comes out of the local bars at night!!

DFW said...

Wow! And, here I thought that my game cam photo of two foxes was exiting. Nothing like a whole troop of baboons! I think I would be scared of that many.

Dani said...

Vicki - The bears would freak me out

"That" kind of wild life is not wanted... LOL

Dani said...

DFW - Foxes - s'funny you mention them - we saw our first ever one here a couple of days ago on our way to town. It almost landed under the wheels of the car in front of us.

Mum said...

He looks a big lad sat on top of the roof. I think I'd be a little bit scared if 45 suddenly turned up in my back garden.
Love from Mum
xx

kymber said...

Dani - how awesome is it to know someone who watches 45 baboons go through their neighbours yard yearly - bahahahahah! honestly, we note the seasons by the different birds who appear at our bird feeders - it's really awesome! i can only imagine tracking seasons by baboon visits - bahahahah! i am glad that they are happy with the new construction and then went on their merry way bypassing your garden. ohhh, there is so many interesting things that you can learn about from other people's blogs - thanks so much for sharing!

your friend,
kymber

Quinn said...

And this is the kind of post that really drives home what far-flung worlds we bloggers inhabit! :)

Harry Flashman said...

My wife grew up in Africa, in Niger and Nigeria. She told me baboons could be really dangerous, that sometimes they went after people if they were teased, or just irritated. We have bears, wolves, bobcats, coyotes, and most frightening of all wild pigs here, but at least we have no baboons! Aren't you scared of them, a little bit?

Mrs. Mac said...




Mrs. Mac10 February 2014 08:42

Thanks for sharing your excitement in the neighborhood! Wow! We had a mama moose and her calf chomping on vegetation 15 feet from our bedroom door this morning .. trudging through the snow .. they are very awkward creatures. God does create some interesting critters, eh?

Dani said...

Mum - Yeah, IF they were in my garden, I'd also be pretty apprehensive LOL

Dani said...

kymber - I longingly look at all those snow pictures on your blog - and the river for dips in summer.

I reckon than blogging is the best (and most eco-friendly) way to travel. The things I have learnt about other countries in the 3 years I've been on blogger are priceless LOL

Dani said...

Quinn - And isn't it wonderful how easy it is to "visit" those far flung places via Blogger LOL

Dani said...

Harry - Yes, baboons are dangerous, and, if they were "used" to humans I would be petrified, because they wouold be a lot more brazen and aggressive. But I was very encouraged that I as walked closer they quickly left.

Personally, though, I would prefer to see the occasional baboon than bears, wolves, bobcats, coyotes and wild pigs...

I think.

LOL

Dani said...

Mrs Mac - That must be amazing to watch too.

Yes, the incredible creatures of this planet have far more right than we do - and they ask so little - merely enough food to eat and their respective territories to roam.

As opposed to our demands of Mother Earth...

nihal said...

Wow.. I would be excited and afraid at the same time... What would happen to your neighbors once they settle? I hope baboons will left until then.

Dani said...

nihal - Yes, I was a little nervous as I walked down the driveway to get closer to them. But when they left hurriedly, I realised that they were more frightened of me :)

The new neighbours - given their reaction to me, perhaps the baboons won't visit once they're living there...?

Kris said...

Honestly I think I'd trade a day of baboons for the 365 days of ravaging deer hereabouts. Glad you are safe and they've moved on.

Dani said...

Kris - Yeah, I'd have a problem with deer scoffing my homegrown goodies too...

As long as the baboons are "unfamiliar" (as in very wary and not eager to fraternize) with humans things should be OK.

Leigh said...

Amazing! At least for this poor homesteader in the southeastern US. It is amazing how we, in different parts of the world, face different problems and predators. Not that I would want to trade ......

Dani said...

LOL - actually, I don't think I'd trade the baboons for crocs, rattlers, bears etc either...

The Stay @ Home-Gardener said...

It is all matter of perspective. Isn't it. :D

Dani said...

TSAHG - Oh , t'is indeed... :)