Accidental Muskrat

It was lunchtime. I was in the kitchen. Bill went out to empty the compost before making his umptigazillionth ham sandwich ( This is not a man who believes in varying the midday menu.)

“Hey Leslie, come see what’s in the trap!”

A muskrat.

Full grown muskrat - they're smaller than you'd think.

Full grown muskrat - they're smaller than you'd think.

It’s not completely surprising; there’s a little creek just a squinch to the south, almost on our property but not quite. And they do come out during the day, especially in rainy weather. But although they eat a wide range of aquatic plants, no one has ever said anything about Brussels sprouts.

Brussels sprouts are – supposedly – irresistible to rabbits and of course that’s why they were being used as bait. We’re giving the crocus-eating invader a decent chance to be transplanted before I am moved to say “will no one rid me of this troublesome rabbit?”

The muskrat got a pass, on the theory that the sprouts were an aberration. They can be pests if you have a pond, but we don’t.

muskrat leaving trap behind

muskrat leaving trap behind

Bill opened the trap facing the shortest way to the creek ( about 75 feet straight left ). The muskrat headed for the fence instead, ran along at quite a clip until it found a place to slither under, then booked it eastward across the yard, presumably headed upstream.

Like opossums, muskrats have many fans. One way to find them is through Everything Muskrat.

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