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CRICKETS AND COYOTES


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The cheerful sound of cricket song beckons me outdoors in the lingering warmth of late summer evenings and I plop myself down under a fig tree to soak it all in; apples ripening on their trees, and figs already sharing their deliciousness. The hydrangea blossoms are packing it in for the year, but in their dry state they will fill autumn vases for a month or so. Across the yard, the large orange tree has been warning me to harvest the fruit unless I want to pick it up off the brick patio. Raymundo promised to come and pick some Friday, but he never showed up. There will be more.

Reluctantly I return to the quiet house, loyal Charlie at my heels, ready for bed and wondering what I find so engaging in the nighttime garden.

The night grows deeper and Dr. Advice slumbers on. The crickets have gone to sleep and the only sound is the primeval yipping of coyotes conversing somewhere outside the garden enclosure. It is late in the year for pupping, but with the drought having depleted water supplies, maybe they are just thirsty. Though the sound is annoying, and I am happy to have Charlie safely indoors, it does not stir a flight response in me as the long mournful howl of a wolf would surely bring.

coyote

As an omnivore, coyotes have adapted to food sources all over the world, some food choices to our benefit.
To many Native American cultures, coyotes were powerful mythological figures venerated for their intelligence and mischievous nature. The Aztec name for the coyote was “coyotyl” which translates to “trickster”. The Navajo sheep and goat herders referred to the coyote as “God’s Dog”. I like that name better.

It’s the push and pull of the life force–cricket song inviting our participation, and coyote song pushing us into our own safe dens, allowing them to rule the night.

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10 comments on “CRICKETS AND COYOTES

  1. We watch the balance of nature play out here. The feral cats begin to multiply, and soon, very late at night, you might hear a coyote yip. The cats increase, and a startled late night walked meets a coyote trotting down the middle of the parking lot. Soon, the moon is full, and a full-out howl isn’t surprising.

    Then, once day, someone says, “Whatever happened to all those cats?” And the cycle begins again.

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  2. Ha Ha! We used to say when an ethnic restaurant moved into town the cats disappeared. Nice to blame the coyotes. Balance of nature.

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  3. No coyotes here, yet, I do love the late night or better yet the early morning sounds and sights. Gunner, our so pampered 6 yr. old lab, has as of late, decided to go out to do his business at 3am! I walk out and stand looking up at the sky. The stillness of the stars and the slight dampness in the air is so mystical that I almost….almost…forget the time! Then I quietly yell to gunner to hurry up..us girls need our beauty sleep!

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  4. If we lived closer we could meet at 3:a.m. I am often awake and outside with Charlie, though 10 p.m. is supposed to be his deadline. I love the silence and the sense of wonder. My star is Orion, which BTW is Savanna’s middle name. It means the Hunter, which of course must be her father!

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  5. Delightfully painted word pictures, Katy: I should love to sit down beside you and have a lazy chat about the god’s dogs …

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  6. I was sat right there with you. Your writing is so vivid.

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  7. Your figs are ready to eat, while our fig season has already passed. We grow ‘Dessert King’ figs and eat the early (breba) crop. The later crop isn’t worth picking.

    We just watched a show on CBC television about the “coywolf”: the product of interbreeding between coyotes and wolves. Apparently, they are increasing in numbers in North America, both in the countryside and in the cities.

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  8. I don’t know “The Desert King” fig. We have both Mission and Kadota. No Mission yet.

    It coywolf is an interesting specie hybridized from both red and grey wolves and coyotes. Interesting that wolves covered the greater part of North America. My wildlife biologist grandson is a supporter of the coyote since they help the balance of nature. A woman we saw in Alaska had a wolf she hoped to keep as a pet. The poor thing was pacing back and forth constantly in stress.

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