Monday, May 17, 2010

Dumpster diving

It was not the typical monday morning. We had a visitor to my office dumpster who helped themselves to our trash. The plastic flaps on the dumpster (now destroyed) and open gate made it an easy target. A bunch of us gathered around and gawked at it until the landscapers' truck drove up to it and scared it off. Everyone except me went back in the office. I just had to get a closer look with my camera. Sure enough the culprit was relaxing along the treeline waiting for another opening so that it could continue its breakfast. The landscapers felt the need to try to warn me. Surely I wasn't around to take out some trash considering I was holding my camera in fully ready mode. Then the garbageman showed up so the landscapers had to back out and I alerted the garbageman of the bear. Of course, neither the landscapers nor the garbageman picked up the trash and so the bear, I'm told, came back. As I left for the field, there was a trail of trash leading to the woods. And we wonder why bears are a problem. It's like leaving a pile of cookies and candy on the counter at work. People will swarm in and help themselves without abandon. But I think I'll be taking the scenic route to my parking spot each day to cruise by the dumpster. Side note - The copy repairman was so scared of the bear he spent 45 minutes in his car. Apparently he couldn't just drive to a different part of the parking lot to avoid the bear.

But my bear stories don't end there. I ventured to bear country and had to do a turtle survey. There was a couple of recent bear dumps as we walked in. Add to that chomped skunk cabbage and cattail. Both usual sights. But today, throw in some nice and very clear bear prints. We all separated as we searched. I was in a tucked in spot along the woods. I then spotted an unusual tree sapling and was yelling out to the others about it. Then I heard a large crash and a huff very close in the woods. I couldn't see anything and I didn't hear any running. So my gut said "Bear, not deer!" I quickly rejoined the group and told of my observation. Needless to say none of the guys ventured over to that part for the rest of the afternoon. Their excuses were "You covered that area so well" or "There was just not enough time." I think we know the real reason.

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