Bittle Ones of Itches

Polecats — that’s what my daddy called them. I call them skunks, or something that rhymes with “Bittle Ones of Itches.”

Skunk

So these Bittle Ones of Itches used to treat me with respect. Of course, that is when I had young dogs that didn’t mind getting stinky. Now, since Luckie and Gracie’s retirement, and their hunting is more aligned with eating fried worms on the driveway (see picture below), the Bittle Ones of Itches are taking over.

Worm Eaters

My beehives are behind fencing because of them. Carefully constructed so a skunk cannot dig under the fence, the Bittle Ones of Itches are climbing over or squeezing through the fencing. They sit out in front of the hives and when the bees fly out to protect their hive, the skunks eat them. They can destroy a hive.

It’s war. I was thinking of shooting them. I can shoot a 22; it’s easy — however, everyone says there is still a bad stinking problem. Someone suggested trapping them as a more humane resolution but who wants to check the trap? Not me. John Rhoton of Poor Valley Bees came up with the fix!

A welcome mat of sorts…

Welcome Mats

But it’s a special welcome mat…look closer.

Welcome Mat 3

Aha! Some Bittle Ones of Itches are not going to have happy paws when they try to get my bees! It’s a great resolution. They’ll leave unharmed except for an “ouchy” on their feet, and my bees will live another day.

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