creaturesall

sharing the planet with our fellow creatures
Issue 20 Feb-Mar/2009
*shipping/handling/taxes extra
Edmonton Area
Edmonton Public School Board
Edmonton Catholic Schools
Elk Island Public Schools
Black Gold Regional School District
Parkland School Division
Greater St. Albert Catholic Schools
Sturgeon School Division
Aspen View Regional Division
St. Albert Protestant Schools
Elk Island Catholic Schools
Red Deer Area
Red Deer Public School District
Red Deer Catholic
Calgary Area
Calgary Board of Education
Calgary Catholic [Separate] School District
Rocky View School Division #41
Canadian Rockies Public Schools
Grasslands Public Schools
An exclusive Canadian collection of wildlife
videos and audio clips
Easy to use lesson plans focused around getting
out of doors
Videos featuring Robert Bateman speaking
directly to students and teachers
Interactive nature games and quizzes
Links to outstanding educational resources
Famous wildlife artist Robert Bateman wants to see what you've created that has
been inspired by nature. The 2009 Get to Know contest is all about getting out into
nature and sharing with others the discoveries you have made.
Any Canadian 19 years of age or younger can enter. And if your piece of artwork,
writing or digital photography is chosen, you will receive prizes and have your work
published in the Robert Bateman 2010 International Year of Biodiversity Calendar.
2009 Contest Dates:
Earth Day, April 22nd
to May 27th, 2009
Visit gettoknow.ca for entry information
The new Get to Know Interactive CD features “virtual hikes” which offer students
the opportunity to virtually explore parks and conservation areas in Toronto,
Edmonton, Calgary and Vancouver. During the hike, students meet and get to know
their wild neighbours of other species. Other elements of this dynamic, interactive
media resource include:
Order your own copy from the Get to Know website!
Robert Bateman’s objective is not to replace real outdoor
experiences with indoor ones, but rather to familiarize
youth with local species as a catalyst for them to go
outdoors and experience the real thing.
The following school districts in Alberta have received the
Robert Bateman Get to Know Interactive CD:
The distribution of the Interactive CD in Alberta is courtesy of the Alberta Conservation Association,
Alberta Lottery Fund, BP Canada, Shell Environmental Fund and TD Friends of the Environment Foundation.
page3
Advertising & Promotion Inquiries
Christine (Cj) Perrin
cjperrin@creaturesall.com 403-648-1793
Graphic Design & Story Inquiries
Bob Fielder
publisher@creaturesall.com
Account Information
Linda Fielder
editor@creaturesall.com
Printing-Rhino Print Solutions-Calgary/Vancouver
Stock Photography-dreamstime.com
Mailing address:
creaturesall
P.O. Box 126,
Langdon, AB T0J 1X0
403-512-9544
creaturesall is published 6 times per year (February,
April, June, August, October and December) by 1160613
ALBERTA LTD. and distributed freely in Alberta or via
subscription the first week of the publication month.
Advertisers and contributors assume responsibility and
liability for the accuracy of their claims and statements.
The opinions and views expressed in articles do not
necessarily reflect those of the Publisher or advertisers.
creaturesall reserves the right to refuse any advertising.
Written submissions become the property of
creaturesall on publication. By proferring your
photographs or written submission you grant us
permission to reproduce it in creaturesall, other printed
media, on our web site or as a component of an online
download. All submissions will receive a reply if email
address is provided.
Writers & Cover Artists may make submissions by email to:
publisher@creaturesall.com
Copyright 2005 by 1160613 ALBERTA LTD.
In This Issue
Zippity Doo Dah – Kelly Dodge 8
Fleeced – Keren Muthsam 16
A Lizard-like Leap of Faith – CJ Mouser 19
Dog on the Run – Sheila Wirsch 24
Hunting for Just the Write Words – Très Bore 29
Columns
Wagging Tales – Dr Richard Weger - B.Sc., DVM 11
Creature Feature – Cyril Brass - photographer & writer 13
Taking Down the Fences – Dianne Wittner - A.I.W.C. 15
Spaces and Species – Kristie Romanow - NCC 21
Wingin’ It – Myrna Pearman - Ellis Bird Farm 23
Youth Said It – Jessica Zutz - Snuggle Buddies 26
The Gardening Bug – Elaine Rude - Master Gardener 27
Obsolete – cari-creatures by Sean Skerry 28
The Final Word – Clayton Kyle - Saying Goodbye 30
Departments
Publisher’s Note 5
Letters 7
In Passing 18
Issue 20 February-March/2009
Cover Artist
Kelly Dodge
Canadian artist Kelly
Dodge regards her
inspirations and artistic
talent as gifts from God
and considers it a great
blessing to be surround-
ed by this natural world
of beauty and discovery.
Each of her paintings
has something specific
to say, communicating
the essence of creation in simplicity and truth.
Primarily painting in pastel, Kelly is perhaps
best known for her ongoing focus on birds
often combined inspirationally with traditional
Christian hymns. She has also garnered much
popularity with a second series, pastel paintings
portraying breathtaking views of the
constellations.
www.kellydodgeart.com
page4
COMMI SSI O NED ARTW O RK & PRI NTS • GRA PHI C DESI GN SERV I CE S • ( 403) 245 - 4386
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D E S I G N SELECTED ITEMS AVAILABLE AT 2032 - 34TH AVENUE SW OR CONTACT carlapelkey@shaw.ca
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page5
Advertiser and Story Submission Deadline for Next Issue – Mar 6th/09
PUBLISHER’S
NOTE
encouraging you to read, then write
Bob & Linda Fielder
I FIND MYSELF DOGLESS OF LATE.
After some 15 years of dogs about
the place, I now find myself dogless.
Doglessness, for me, carries with it
aimlessness, humorlessness, motiva-
tionlessness, not to mention an
accompanying overall disregard for
all the basic rules of proper English.
Not good for a publisher; not good
for me.
We recently lost both of our
dogs within 4 months of one another,
both to the vagaries of old age. They
were good company and saw in me
qualities I never truly possessed.
It’s not that we’ve never had
other critters about the place, we’ve
had cats too. Truth be told, I like
cats. Their total lack of concern
regarding whether I like them or not
is, paradoxically, what I like most
about them. But . . . a cat is no dog.
We also have three horses and
an equal number of goats scattered
about, all of which do their part to
brighten my day. But there’s just
something about a dog.
In the sorry event my English
skills have deteriorated to the point
that you are rendered unable to read
between the lines — I recently
decided to get another dog.
Although dogs have absolutely no
standards regarding who or what they
will sidle up to and pledge everlasting
allegiance, I have my criteria.
Firstly, I wanted a rescue dog. I
stop here to apologize to those of you
who have chosen to do otherwise
and have purchased your own $1500,
genetically engineered, Golden
Schitz-Poo, (which is itself in more
need of rescue than might at first be
thought.) For myself, I was looking
for a healthy, happy mutt. Secondly,
I wanted a young dog; not a puppy,
but hopefully under a year. This,
based on the premise she would
already be housebroken and I would
therefore not need to contend with
surprise deposits of Schitz-Poo on
our living room rug.
Also, based on the fact that
everything I’ve learned about
patience I’ve learned from my wife, I
wanted a female pup.
I also wanted to be sure I would
be able to buy pet insurance for
whatever dog chose to share our
home. In order to do that, this young,
rescued, female newcomer would
need to have a clean bill of health.
Having made all of the afore-
mentioned conditions prerequisite to
getting another dog, we also decided
to put off looking until summer. We
had every intention of sticking to our
guns on every condition . . . until,
that is, we received the following
email from our loving and caring
niece just last week:
Hi Uncle Bob!
I wanted to send some information to
you and wondered if you were
interested. I have a volunteer that
works for me and she has a cinnamon
colored, lab/german shepherd cross, 1
year old, fully trained pup that she needs
to find a home for. The dog is spayed
and has all of its shots up to date, is
kennel trained, comes with its kennel
and toys, has obedience classes and is a
rescue dog. Would you and Auntie Linda
be interested at all? The dog is FREE.
So, I ask you, what’s a fellow to do?
FREE notwithstanding, I think you, who
by now have most certainly discerned the
secret of reading between the lines,
already know what a fellow’s to do. The
pup arrives this week.
All that is now left to do, is choose
a suitable name. One can not be too
careful in this regard. I remember my
mom once saying you should never
settle on the name for a child or a pet
until you've yelled it out at the top of
your lungs from your doorstep on a
warm summer’s night. At the time, our
next door neighbor had a little boy
named ‘Dale’ and I remember hearing
his mom yelling for him at dinner time
from her front step one warm summer
evening . . .
and hearing my dad immediately
respond at the top of his lungs . . .
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page6
Some of the sculptures I have
completed include pheasants, frogs,
dogs, cats, historic buildings, roses,
sunflowers, mushrooms and cat-tails.
All of my pieces are created from the
recycled hoods of cars and trucks. I
rework the heavy gauge metal using an
assortment of tools and techniques
which owe much to the now bygone
age when blacksmithing and hand-
craftsmanship were the only options
available. I do take orders for gift-giving
and keep an inventory of a variety of
sculptures on hand.
COUNTRY CREATIONS
Metal Sculptures
COUNTRY CREATIONS
Metal Sculptures
hnhdougan@shaw.ca
Harvey Dougan 403-934-3640
WENDY PALMER artist
Limited Edition Giclée on canvas
art reproductions available at these
Fine Art Galleries:
Avenida Art Gallery
Calgary, Alberta
www.avenidagalleries.com
Art Country Canada
Bragg Creek, Alberta
www.artcountrycanada.com
Artists for Conservation
Supporting Nature through art
www.natureartists.com/wendy_palmer.asp
Prestige Fine Art & Framing
Okotoks, Alberta
www.prestigefineartframing.com
For more information on upcoming exhibitions please visit my website
www.wendypalmer-artist.com
page7
Thank you for your return
phone call yesterday morning advis-
ing that back issues of creaturesall
are available!
Financial restraints make it
impossible to purchase all the copies
I need (Issue #1 to #14 and #16) at
one time. A very good family friend
introduced your excellent publication
to us with Issue #15 and advised she
had obtained it as a complimentary
copy from either Safeway or Sobeys
in Calgary.
It is such an excellent publica-
tion for the whole family! We
frequently care for our three grand-
daughters and with every issue we
now sit down together and read and
discuss every article that is age
appropriate. For myself, I enjoy the
exceptional art work, from cover to
cover, and especially the story
content. The Final Word by Susan
Sweetman in the 19th issue, has
been framed and the article proudly
displayed in our living room for vis-
iting family and friends alike to read.
Al Dahl
My friend and I pooled our
resources to give yet another friend
creaturesall as a birthday gift from
the two of us, beginning with issue
#20. Thanks for a great magazine
which we each enjoy thoroughly.
Please keep it coming. In tough
times it is a welcome light.
Linda Hoffman
Thanks for another wonderful
year of reading. Your publication just
gets better and better. The hopeful-
ness of creaturesall is a lovely
respite from so much of the negative
content in many magazines one picks
up. I'm sending for a renewal of my
dad's subscription and for my girl-
friend. Thanks.
Congrats on all you do.
Cathy Woiwod
I do love your magazine!
Patty Axenroth
I'm in the process of issuing a
cheque to be sent out your way for a
subscription for Catherine Tudhope
in Calgary.
Dee Morita
Pacific Assistance Dogs Society
Well, I read Susan Sweetman’s
article, as best I could through tears
streaming down my face, starting
after making it through the first few
sentences.
What a story.
Carla Pelkey
I've enjoyed reading creaturesall
magazine for some time now, and
would be interested in submitting
articles. Could you send me informa-
tion on deadlines, word counts, etc?
Tim Battle
The Alberta SPCA
This subscription if a present for
my sister-in-law. Keep up the good
work.
Alister Thomas
Still enjoying your magazine as
much as ever, so here's the money
to keep ‘em coming. We love the
magazine so much because it's one
of a kind. These days people are so
busy, so caught up in life; and your
wonderful articles remind us of the
beautiful life that surrounds us day
to day. There are still people out
there who appreciate it and people
who have the compassion to go out
of their way to help an animal friend
in need. Once again, thank you.
Malorie and Clayton
I'm very pleased to send in my
renewal for creaturesall - I don't
want to miss an issue. And I'd like to
get a second subscription as well.
Janna
I saw an advertisement in the
current issue of creaturesall (issue
19, I believe) that simply said “call
for artists and writers”. I am very
much interested in submitting some
writing to your magazine, but I am
curious as to the sorts of things you
are looking for. What topics?
Fictional or non-fictional? What are
the length requirements? Or are
you merely looking for anything
that would fit into your magazine?
Thank you,
A. Rollo
I really like your magazine and
am considering submitting an
article. I just went to your website
to look for writer's guidelines and
found that the site is being
revamped. Can you email me your
guidelines in the meantime?
Many thanks,
Susan Wider
Hi, My name is Keith
Sandulak. I have a farm outside of
Alberta Beach just north west of
Edmonton. I was in Calgary this
weekend drawing cartoons for
some Christmas parties and had
the pleasure of seeing your
magazine while staying with my
cousins, Jan and Tom Lockhart. Jan
had suggested I email you and
introduce myself as an artist and
possible contributor with some of
my work. My wife shot this picture
this morning, which I thought
showed me in
good company.
Keep up with
your publication,
you're doing a
great job giving
voice to all the
animals.
Keith Sandulak
LETTERS
paw prints and pen scratches
readers write
page8
Z
ippity Doo Dah is a fledgling I
once had the pleasure of
assisting. Zippy's parents nest
each year in our bluebird box and are
among the many spring birds that come
for handouts to my back patio. Or
rather they are among the many that
have managed to train me to
drop everything, run out and
serve them whenever they
flutter at my back window.
I have an old suet cage
stapled to the outside of our
bluebird box. It functions as a
great predator guard, allowing the
bluebirds to easily come and go while
keeping them safe from dangerous
predators like cats, raccoons, squirrels
etc. The parents don't seem to mind it.
The day the babies fledged, this
particular one tried to fly out
backwards. The parents repeatedly
called to their young and appeared to
withhold feeding in an attempt to entice
them to leave their now cramped quar-
ters and join them in the real world.
This little guy was the last of his 4
siblings to fledge and somehow he
managed to get himself turned around.
Leaping out backwards he landed on
the lawn and did not have enough
strength to gain altitude. I picked him
up and returned him to the edge of the
box, this time facing the correct
direction. He still landed on the lawn.
He was quite tuckered out from having
made two failed attempts. He was also
in a very visible, not to mention
vulnerable open space on the lawn.
His parents continued to call to
him, attempting to entice him to a
safer location. Unable to comply on his
own steam, he allowed me to take him
to the bottom of the basswood tree that
his siblings were perched in. I figured
he could just hop his way up through
the branches to join his brothers and
sisters. He promptly fell off the branch!
We repeated the attempt and he
promptly fell off a second time.
It turned out that Zippy's wings
weren't fully developed and to add to
his troubles, he was born with
a crippled hind toe not at all
conducive to balancing with
underdeveloped wings.
It was turned backwards
and folded under his front
toes, however I was sure that
once his wings strengthened he would
be able to compensate for his wobbly
foot.
I now joined the parents in a
co-parenting venture. Daily I would put
Zippy out in an old cockatiel cage from
which I had removed the lid. His
waiting parents would take the
mealworms down into the cage to feed
him. They would also bring him
grasshoppers, crickets, caterpillars and
other such delicacies. I would supple-
I now joined the parents
in a co-parenting venture
page9
ment his diet in the house with mealworms when I was
unable to supervise him outside. I would also keep him in
during the night. Each morning his parents would greet us
and faithfully continued to feed him at intervals while he
perched on a branch in my old cockatiel cage. They would
alternate his feedings with those of his siblings who were
perched high in the trees around our home.
After a week Zippy's wings strengthened enough for
flight and balance. It was a privilege to escort Zippy to the
middle of the lawn where he successfully launched himself
into the stratosphere! It was a blessing to see him join his
parents and siblings in the sky.
I credit my mom with the idea for this concept. She
had co-parented 3 very young Baltimore Oriole nestlings
many years ago on the farm. When they were blown down
during a storm, she became worried about the farm cats
getting them, so she kept the nestlings in the house, taking
them out several times a day to perch in a low branch. The
parents continued to feed them at these intervals until they
had gained enough wing strength to successfully fledge.
The last time I saw my little bluebird friend he was
sitting on a hydro wire with his 4 brothers and sisters and
Mom and Dad. I bet you are wondering how I knew which
one was Zippy. Well, you see, when Zippy had an itch . . .
he would wobble just a bit as he scratched! ca
b
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page10
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L
oud music filled the grand
hall and I unconsciously
tapped my foot to the
strangely addictive beat of a two
decade old melody. I stood amongst a small group of my
colleagues from the veterinary hospital and we made the
chit chat that often accompanies large social gatherings. As
I looked around I could make out the familiar faces of both
current and past employees.
Although we were happy to see each other, the impetus
behind this collective was a sad and somber one. Today, one
of our own was stepping down. A local veterinary legend
was hanging up his stethoscope for good and journeying on
to other pastures. Dr. Stone, one of the originating partners
of the hospital had decided to finally retire. Abruptly, the
music was silenced and a hush born of sincere admiration
descended over the crowd. Dr. Stone stood proudly at the
podium and pondered the assembly that lay before him. He
began to speak of his humble beginnings and spoke with
tearful recollection of the many joys and sadness that he
experienced over his many years in veterinary practice.
While listening to Dr. Stone’s earnest speech my thoughts
drifted to how this great man had unknowingly placed me
on the path I follow today.
It began many years ago after I had returned from
University for spring break. In those days, I had followed the
more esoteric studies of genetics and was looking to
eventually get my PhD and spend my time doing research.
Though I was happy to see my human family, there was
a canine member of our clan that I missed terribly, my long-
time friend and companion Mitzy. Mitzy was a scrappy 15yr
old Pomeranian whose main distinguishing feature was her
long and hairy bat like wings. This small spark plug of a dog
had been our family’s first pet and we had happily enjoyed
her antics since the first day that she had adopted us as her
human caregivers. Arriving from school I burst into the
doorway and was greeted enthusiastically by my diminutive
friend and was immediately barraged with sloppy wet
kisses. Mitzy and I spent that evening sitting comfortably in
front of the living room fireplace enjoying our favorite past
time of watching movies and all was
right in the world.
The next morning I was
awakened brusquely from
my slumber by my mother. “Something is wrong with
Mitzy,” she said in a trembling tone. Early that morning my
mother had gotten up to let Mitzy outside and had found her
laid out on her favorite pillow unable to move. Gathering my
dog in my arms, I and my family quickly rushed to the
emergency veterinary hospital located only a few blocks
away. Flying through the doorway and alerting the staff to
our situation we were quickly directed to an examination
room. The emergency doctor on staff was a gentleman who
introduced himself as Dr. Stone. He lifted Mitzy from my
arms with great care and gently examined her. After a time,
he explained to us in a soft manner that Mitzy had most
likely suffered a stroke and that the most humane thing was
to let her go. As I held my longest and best friend in my
arms, I looked into Dr. Stone’s eyes and I could see the
compassion that rested behind them. Although we had just
met I trusted this man and I knew that his words rang true.
After a brief discussion we decided as a family to let Mitzy
pass on. After the procedure was finished, Dr. Stone placed
his hand on my shoulder and with a soft smile said, “She is
at peace now.”
Prior to this event I had never lost anybody close to me.
I had lived in a state of denial where I believed that my
friends and family would always be there for me and that
they would live forever. The harsh reality of life crashed
down on me and woke me from my delusion. I began to sob
as I realized that I would never again see my friend. Later
that day, as I relived the day’s events over and over in
my mind, I found that I gained some comfort from
Dr. Stone’s words.
Shaking my head I returned my attention back to Dr.
Stone’s speech. After the testimonials I approached Dr.
Stone, shook his hand, and related to him how much he
would be missed both by staff and client alike. Although I
realized that he did not remember me from those many
years ago, he had left a lasting impression. His compassion
and empathy for others had instilled in me a great respect
for veterinarians, and led me to become one of them, and it
is for that gift I can never repay. ca
Dr. Richard Weger is a graduate of the Western College of
Veterinary Medicine, specializing in exotic veterinary
medicine. He is currently owned by his Senegal parrot, Tiko
and his cat, Mendel.
page11
WAGGING TALES
stories from a veterinarian’s clinic
by Dr. Richard Weger, B.Sc., DVM
page12
memories made timeless
We welcome you to visit
the studio on our farm
near Cremona. Just a
short, beautiful drive
north of Calgary.
Stop by our studio or visit:
www.dianeandersontymarc.com
for some wonderfully unique
and surprisingly affordable
gift giving ideas.
Diane M. Anderson
www.dianeandersontymarc.com
tymarc@xplornet.com
403-637-2274 403-803-8039
CREATURE FEATURE
the eyelash palm pit viper
by Cyril Brass
page13
olourful but
deadly, the
Eyelash Palm
Pit Viper is one of the most
dangerous of the venomous snakes in
Central America. It is also one of the
smallest snakes, rarely exceeding 75
cm (29.5 inches).
The most prominent features of
the Eyelash Palm Pit Viper are its
colourations, triangular shaped head,
and most of all, spiny scales positioned
above the eyes. These pit vipers get
their name from this distinctive patch of
upright pointed scales over each eye,
resembling eyelashes.
Unlike most snakes whose scales
are smooth, the Eyelash Palm Pit
Vipers possess rough and sharp
scales believed to protect themselves
against tree branches and to aid in
their camouflage against potential
predators. Their arboreal habitats
are situated in humid tropical regions
with dense lush foliage consisting of
shrubbery, vines, and trees not far
from permanent water sources like
swamps, streams or rivers
The wide array of colours like
red, yellow, brown, green, tan, rust,
and various colour combinations
thereof, helps them blend into their
surroundings. It is amazing that such
vibrantly coloured snakes can become
invisible amongst the jungle vegeta-
tion. I would guess that in all my treks
through tropical rainforests, I have
passed by several of these snakes
without spotting them in the thick
vegetation.
But I did see two of these deadly
creatures during a hike in the coastal
rainforests of Tortuguero National
Park, Costa Rica. The first one was
situated about a meter above the
ground. Grey-green in colour this pit
viper was clinging to the bark of a
towering tree and blending in with
the colours of the bark. Then just
several meters further along the trail,
the second pit viper, a golden yellow
colour, was spotted curled up on a
flat broad leaf right beside the walk-
ing trail. Cautiously I took a couple of
steps closer to the small motionless
snake which enabled me to see
clearly the distinctive ridges above
the eyes. Yes, that was an Eyelash
Palm Pit Viper. Slowly, I backed away.
When spotted, these snakes can
be seen resting on branches or broad
leaves sunning themselves until an
opportune time presents itself for a
meal. Appearing to be in a resting
position, they are paradoxically,
always in an ambush position and
ready to strike. Certain death lies
only a few meters away
Patiently they wait for potential
prey such as small rodents, frogs,
lizards and small birds to pass by
them. These vipers possess heat
sensitive organs or pits located on
either side of the head between the
eye and nostril which allows them to
identify the direction of potential
prey. This is of great value to a night
hunter. As most snakes are
nocturnal, the Eyelash Viper hunts
from late evening through the early
morning.
They attack prey quickly,
inject venom, wait for the
quick and inevitable death of
their victim and then swallow
it. Pit vipers have large hypo-
dermic needle-like fangs posi-
tioned in the upper jaw. Even
though they carry only a few
milligrams of venom, just one
drop of this potent venom is
extremely toxic to humans.
Possessing a prehensile
tail, these tree dwelling
predators are able to catch and
eat prey while suspending
midair from a branch.
Sometimes they wrap themselves
around colourful heliconia blooms
waiting for unsuspecting hummingbirds
searching for juicy nectar. What an
excellent ambush sight.
While hiking in the lush jungles,
tour guides stress to visitors not to
get too close to wild tropical flowers
like heliconias for that very reason.
The Eyelash Palm Pit Viper . . . a
colourful snake . . . a nocturnal
hunter . . . a deadly predator. ca
Cyril Brass is a Wildlife and Sports
Photographer living in Calgary.
www.cyrilbrass.com
403-999-1908
C
page14
Illustrator & Fine Artist
Custom Christmas Card Designs, Pet Portraits and more! www.crystaldriedger.com
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TAKING DOWN THE FENCES
me and you and an owl named boo
by Dianne Wittner
J
.K. Rowling got it right when she
made an owl the symbolic bird
of magic. Twelve species of them
live in Alberta and each is magical
and awe-inspiring, even after
hundreds of encounters.
The very word ‘owl’ conjures up
images of huge yellow eyes and
mystical nights in the forest.
Alberta’s most successful bird of
prey, the Great Horned Owl is
familiar to most, an intimidating grey
ghost found everywhere in the
province. Then there is the magnifi-
cent Snowy Owl, largest of them all
with power enough to capture hares
outweighing them by fifty percent.
One of the least known, the tiny
Boreal Owl, has power of a different
sort. This speckled raptor is very
elusive and weighs about the same as
a robin, but for one young boy it had
the power to change his life.
It began with a subtle thump on a
living room window, the kind of soft
noise that wouldn’t attract much
notice. As luck would have it a boy
named Brian investigated the thump
and found a feathered bundle no
bigger than a softball huddled in the
snow next to the porch railing. Brian
watched for a time and noticed the
bird kept its eyes closed and seemed
unable to leave. Half an hour later,
when it hadn’t moved, he instinctively
felt something was wrong. Brian
brought the owl inside his house and
when it opened its eyes to look at
him, he was transfixed by the
piercing intensity of that gaze. Later,
he told us how he saw both courage
and fear in those eyes and how he
would never forget experiencing an
overwhelming feeling of urgency,
compelling him to take immediate
action.
It took some persistent effort for
Brian to track us down as he had no
idea there was such a thing as a
wildlife hospital. In full support of
their son’s ‘call to action’, Brian’s
parents drove him and his precious
cargo to AIWC on a frigid Sunday
evening. The owl went into examina-
tion as I sat down with Brian to
obtain the bird’s history and start the
necessary paperwork. I identified the
tiny raptor and explained what would
happen to her.
It was not surprising the owl had
suffered head trauma but her prognosis
was good. In four days, she showed
interest in flying again and in two
weeks she was ready to return to the
evergreen forest from which she had
come.
Boreal Owls are named for the
habitat in which they live and Brian’s
home was in the heart of it. Since
they are non-migratory, it was a safe
bet the owl lived on or near Brian’s
property. I met him there just as it
was getting dark. Brian explained to
me how he had been reading up on
owls, particularly Boreal Owls, a
species he had never even heard of
before this encounter.
“I doubt he’ll ever look at birds
the same,” Brian’s mother told me.
“In fact, I think that little owl has
changed all of us.” Her eyes misted a
bit but Brian beamed with pride at
what he had done.
Brian and I walked past the
house and into the forest, away from
the threat of windows and rambunc-
tious dogs. As darkness swallowed us
we had to work by the distant glow of
the yard light and the faint beam
emanating from Brian’s flashlight.
Surrounded by spruce, I lifted the owl
out of the box and gave her a moment
to get her bearings. I could feel her
heart thumping, undoubtedly
energized by fear and anticipation. It
would have been thrilling for Brian to
release her himself but his lack of
training could put her at risk of injury.
Brian was okay with that; her immi-
nent freedom was more important.
Like a will-o-the-wisp she
vanished into the night while Brian
and I stared at the inky forest hoping
to hear or see another sign of her. I
knew we wouldn’t but it didn’t
matter. Together, we imagined her
perched high in a tree staring down
at us, absorbing her familiar
surroundings and wishing the
annoying humans would leave.
Eleven years later, Brian is in his
second year of university where he is
studying conservation biology.
Though I’d like to take credit for the
life path he chose, I think it has more
to do with the piercing eyes of a
magical owl of the boreal forest. ca
AIWC’s injured wildlife and wildlife
control hotline is open 365 days a year,
serving Calgary, Southern Alberta and
the Northwest Territories. AIWC offers
education programs, and opportunities
for members, volunteers and donors!
Contact AIWC at 403-946-2361 or
online at www.aiwc.ca, and http://aiw-
cwildlifecontrol.ca.
page15
page16
you want five goats?”
The five simple words that
started it all, and six months later,
sometimes I wish my answer would
have been ‘no’. But then again, had I
said no, I wouldn’t be telling you this
story now.
A fellow nurse that I really didn’t
know very well, apart from her first
name (and that’s not a hard thing to do
because it’s on her name tag), walked up to
me one winter day at the hospital.
‘Hey, you have goats. I have five angora
does, would you like them?’
Since this was a freebie deal, I agreed
and told her where my house was. She
offered to bring them out to me. A week
passed and I hadn’t heard from her, until one
day a car and trailer pulled up in my
driveway with five … goats doesn’t seem to
be the right description. Wooly mammoths,
perhaps?
Well, it was a funny little group of goats
indeed that I had taken in. Two of the does,
strangely enough, had urine all over their
faces and front legs. Digging through their
mohair, sure enough, there were ‘boy bits’
there. Of the five, only one was friendly and
wouldn’t stop following me around. She
looked ancient and I guessed her to be
around 12 yrs old. The two boys, going by
their mouths, were 6 years old. The other
two girls were about 8 years old, as far as I
could tell. One seemed to have had a broken
leg some years ago and as a result had a
funny jumping gait.
Questioning the lady a little more, I
discovered the sad story that was their life
before arriving at my place. The five of
them had been living in a tiny backyard in
the middle of Wagga Wagga – the largest
inland city in New South Wales for those
that aren’t familiar with Australia. The fam-
ily had started off with one bottle baby –
the old girl who kept following me around.
They discovered that goats make really
good pets so they decided to breed her …
she had twin does, and a few years later
they bred her again and got twin bucks.
The buck kids they banded; however, when
I inspected the guys later after shearing, I
noticed one testicle had been missed on
both the guys, resulting in animals that
looked like bucks and had all the charming
habits that bucks have, but weren’t fertile.
As we know, five goats in a tiny backyard
get a little difficult to feed, and the
neighbours and council weren’t real pleased
about it either, which is why I ended up
being asked to take them in.
by Keren Muthsam
fleeced
how the two bucks weren’t flystruck around the pizzle I do not
know. I have trouble with pizzle strike in my own bucks and
wethers, even with shearing every six months and crutching at
three months growth.

D
o
page17
The first thing to do was get some
condition on them, because they were
skin and bones and just had no fight in
them when I pulled them off the
trailer. So they went into a one acre
paddock with grass and weeds up to
their bellies, and they were very happy
goats. The devoured two mineral
blocks in the first day, and kept eating
them at a steady rate. It didn’t take
them long to knock down the grass in
that paddock.
About a month after I got them, I
decided it was probably time to do a bit
more work on them. They looked like
they had missed the last three shearings,
and how the two bucks weren’t flystruck
around the pizzle I do not know. I have
trouble with pizzle strike in my own
bucks and wethers, even with shearing
every six months and crutching at three
months growth. So it was high time they
got rid of their fleece.
Catching them for shearing was an
interesting story in itself. For about a
week I tried feeding them in an old
stock crate out in the paddock, hoping
that I could shut them in. No luck, they
were wise to me. In the end, I set up
some gates in the paddock and had a
couple of friends over and we tried to
chase them up into the gates. On the
third go round we were successful. I
was pleased to feel they now had some
meat and fat on their bones and that
they put up more of a struggle when I
handled them.
Shearing was an interesting affair.
Since I decided I didn’t want to subject
my regular shearer to them, I did
them myself with a good set of hand
shears. Now I am only 150cm and
50kg, not exactly the tallest, heaviest
or strongest person so it became a
battle of wits, with the goats biting,
kicking, screaming, flopping and me
sitting on top of the animal, happily
shearing away. You wouldn’t believe
me but honestly this is true — as I was
shearing one of them, the radio in the
shed started playing that old Aussie
song ‘Click go the shears’.
It took me a while but I finally
uncovered five reasonable looking
goats under all that hair. And this is
where the story ends for the two boys.
Since they only had one testicle each
they weren’t any use as breeding
bucks, and they were not friendly
enough to be rehomed as pets.
The story continues for the does,
though. The three girls remained on
my place for about a year, during
which I did a lot of work rehabilitating
them. The old girl, who I named Ellie,
didn’t need any work because she was
so friendly, but the other girls (Lucky
and Cheryl) had some pretty extensive
psychological issues from their
previous ‘home’. They were completely
petrified of small children and dogs –
leading me to believe they were chased
and harassed by both. It took a long
time before they were comfortable
around my young nephews and the
dogs. It also took them a while to
settle into ‘herd life’ – living with and
interacting with other goats was
something very new to them, and they
had to learn how to really ‘be a goat’.
They did calm down somewhat although
they will never be very friendly,
people-orientated goats. I just recently
sold them pregnant to a young man
just getting started in goats. This will
be a better situation for them as they
will have large spaces to roam; they
just weren’t completely suited to a
small acreage like mine.
Perhaps the best part of the story is
where good old Ellie has ended up.
Sweet old thing, she has gone to be a
pampered pet and a pack goat near
Melbourne, Victoria’s capital city. She is
being spoiled rotten and has taken well
to her new job as a pack goat. Her new
owner sent me an email saying, “Did you
know she is house trained? She got into
the house one night, and she doesn’t pee
or poop in there; she opens the doors to
let herself in and out.” Now that’s a
story with a happy ending!
I hear from their new owners
every once in a while, and I know they
are being well looked after. At the
time, I thought that the hard work I
put into those goats wasn’t worth it,
and I should have said no at the start.
But now, I will admit, it has been a
very satisfying experience and I am
happy that I turned those goat’s lives
around. My doors and paddock gates
are still open to rescue goats. ca
Keren Muthsam a full time university
student based in Yerong Creek in NSW,
Australia, currently researching fleece
quality in sheep and fibre goats. She
also teaches local school students about
preparing livestock for shows along
with tending her own stud flock of
about 50 Angora, Boer and Dairy goats.
page18
Kounterfeit
It is with great sadness that we
announce the passing of Kounterfeit,
our lovely four year old mare. When
Kounterfeit was born she resembled
neither her mother or father in color,
disposition, or stature; and that is how
she obtained her name. We, at first,
were not convinced that she was her
mother’s filly nor were the many guests
who came to visit her. She concerned us due to her tiny
stature and the fact that her legs were unable to propel her
forward. She on the other hand seemed less concerned,
and hopped backwards around her pen at great speed.
Kounterfeit’s quiet, curious, social nature was quickly
apparent; as a filly if you sat down in her field she would
come over and lie beside you waiting for you to stroke her.
She loved being around humans and we were never certain
that she was aware that she was a horse. She was always
one to come over to greet all guests; with or without
carrots; never acting indifferent to anyone. She looked
forward to coming into the barn, but was never quite sure
what to do once inside. She seemed to find fencing not to
be a restraint but rather an obstacle to be literally bent to
her desires. Her curiosity of new things caused her much
difficulty with the installation of electrical fencing – often
being the horse in the herd that received the jolt. She was
deeply loved by many, and she seemed to love in return –
especially her friends Jake and Bob. We loved her, were
touched by her, admired her, and now deeply miss her.
Good Bye Miss Kounterfeit.
Passed away: 10/09/08
Gus
Dear Gus,
We should have known that most
people, especially softies for dogs, do
not go “just looking at dogs.” There you
were a sweet, red, tiny peanut of a dog
that looked like a little deer lying placid-
ly in the forest. More accurately you
were sleeping in a pen at a pet store
ready to pounce on any unsuspecting
prey. Alas, we were enamoured, so the deer image fits.
With all the “oohs” and “aahs” expected in the presence of
a King, we walked away pondering the possibility. You had
begun to take root in our hearts and minds.
We should have known when we went back for a sec-
ond look a few days later that we were in trouble and going
down fast. As we each took turns holding your sleepy,
squishy, royal body the magic spell was being cast for you
to take up permanent residence in our hearts.
We should have known when you snuggled up to our
bodies; slept on the beds, chairs or anywhere else you
chose that we were raising a King. We laughed at your
royal manner as you strutted around your domain.
We should have known when your obedience teacher
looked us in the eye and said “You’d better get a handle on
him or you are in for trouble,” that we had a force to be
reckoned with. You showed her what you thought as you
defiantly lifted your imperial leg on her pants and spent
the rest of the classes observing from the perimeter,
labeled as a trouble maker.
We should have known that people would laugh at
your bravado as you challenged anything and everything
with four legs. They did not know you as we did.
We should have known that you would balloon to 15
pounds because you were feeding the Big Dog that lived inside
you. It required great restraint on our part to not fill your
bowl when you would bark your command for more food.
We could not have known how many emotions that
you could evoke in us, from absolute delight to utter frus-
tration. All of this experience, emotion, creativity and dis-
cipline because a tiny peanut of a dog captured our hearts
We are most grateful we shared thirteen years of life with
you that we probably would not have if we had known the
ride we were in for.
We should have known that we would not want to
notice the years taking the shine off your eminence, your
waning ability to dictate as your eyes, ears and body failed
you. We knew that eventually the decision would have to
be made to help you from this life to the next. You were
not leaving without a fight and we held on to you as long
as we could. Thankfully you held court so all of us were
there to say goodbye together.
Please forgive us for our two new dogs but Hope,
your loyal minion, missed you terribly and our two new
family members needed a home. Take some consolation
in the fact that it required two larger dogs to help us
recover from one small dictator. You would approve of
them because they would not challenge your majestic
position.
Just one question, are you ruling your kingdom just as
well on the other side?
You are loved and greatly missed Gus! Drop by and
grace us with your presence sometime.
Passed away: 09/05/06
IN PASSING
celebrating the lives of animal friends
page19
T
here are some people in
this world for whom there
is no insignificant life.
Tammy, a dear friend of mine, is one of
those people.
Central Florida is crawling with
little lime-green lizards. They’re
everywhere. They get stepped on, run
over, and closed up in car doors. So,
when Tammy started telling me about
the lobby lizard, I laughed until I was
blue in the face.
“I told you ‘bout the lizard, didn’t
I?” she asked, in her thick Louisiana
accent. We were sitting outside the
motel she manages late one Saturday
night, talking, and solving all the
world’s problems.
“No.” I giggled, sensing a story.
“What lizard?”
“Well, there was this lizard, you
see, and he got himself locked in the
lobby of the office. I tried to catch him,
but he was too fast. He was in there 2
or 3 days and then I looked up one day
and there he was, stretched out on the
window sill.” She wrinkled her nose.
“He was all skinny and pale-looking ...
even for a lizard ... and I thought, now,
if I don’t feed him, he’s gonna die.”
“Tammy!”
“Well, you know,” she said and
shrugged, “the lizard had to eat.”
“What’d you do?”
“Well, I figured he might eat flies,
so I went out back with a little trashcan
and caught me a fly, slapped the lid on
the can and took it back to the lobby
and turned it loose. It worked out just
fine, because the fly flew straight at
that lizard, and I thought, he’s gonna
get it! Well, he jumped for it, but he
missed, and I said, ‘Dummy! That was
your one chance at salvation!’ But I
couldn’t really blame him because he
was weak, you know? He did his best.”
“So, what happened next?”
“Well I called the bait store and I
asked the man if they had any worms.
He said they had night crawlers, and I
told him I didn’t think they would
work. He asked me what I was trying
to feed. I said, ‘a lizard.’ He
recommended iguana food, but I told
him it wasn’t that kinda lizard.”
By now I was chuckling, picturing
this conversation in my mind.
“ ‘Don’t tell you’re tryin’ to feed
one of those little yard lizards,’ he said.
I finally admitted I was, and he wanted
to know what the lizard’s name was. I
tried to pretend like I hadn’t named
him, but the guy forced it out of me.”
“So, what was his name?” I asked.
“Leo!” she said, somewhat
defensively. “It suited him. Anyway, the
man told me that I might get him to eat
some maggots,” she said, and
shuddered. “So I went out to the
dumpster and I found some and put
‘em in a little bucket. I didn’t want to,
you know, but Leo had to eat. I took
‘em in there and I laid one out right in
front of Leo and he snatched it right
up. I was so happy! Leo finally had
something to eat, so I gave him
another one. Now, I didn’t know how
much lizards eat so I figgered that was
enough for the moment, and I found a
place out back to hide Leo’s food
bucket and went on with my day. Late
that afternoon, John, the owner came
in and said, ‘you
wouldn’t believe
what I found in a
bucket out back.’ “
I gasped. “He
found the bucket with Leo’s food?”
“Yes he did, and he threw it
away!”
“Oh no!”
“Oh, yes! So there poor Leo was
with nothing to eat again.”
I was laughing so hard by now I
couldn’t see straight.
“But see, God, he has a plan for
everything, you know? Even little ol’
lizards,” Tammy said with a certainty
born out of pure faith. “Later on that
day Leo decided on his own that he
was fed up with indoor life and when I
opened the door, he scooted right on
outside.”
“Thank goodness!” I said, as
happy for Tammy as I was for Leo, and
even weeks after the whole lobby
lizard incident Tammy was smiling with
a quiet satisfaction. Her mission, as
she saw it, was accomplished.
“God helps them that helps
themselves,” she said finally and
nodded, content that she had done her
best to keep this little lizard alive until
he set himself free.
Personally, I don’t know about
religion or reincarnation or the
secret of life, but if by chance I come
back some day as a lizard and find
myself trapped in a building, I
can only hope that Tammy finds
me and feeds me until I put myself
back on the right path. After all, for
some people there is no insignificant
life, and Tammy is one of those
people. ca
CJ Mouser is a freelance writer living
in Bradenton, Florida. She has written
for newspapers, magazines, and is in
the process of having two books
published. Visit her Web site at:
http://www.cjmouser.com.
by CJ Mouser
page20
A life torn apart
through loss...
a true, tough-love story about
accepting the unacceptable.
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or www.pinkgazelle.com Soft cover edition
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PI CTURE FRAMI NG
403-243-1910
Animal Rescue Foundation (ARF) rescues stray and unwanted dogs
and cats from First Nations communities and rural areas and places
them in loving, permanent homes while providing programs to reduce
pet over-population.
Please visit us at www.arf.ab.ca to view all of our wonderful dogs and
cats that are available for adoption. We are also looking for
Foster Families to help take care of our animals until we can place
them in their forever homes. ARF covers all costs and the rewards
are immeasurable!
The Hervey Foundation for Cats is a place of protection
and refuge for cats, the old, the suffering and a place of
last resort for healthy cats that would otherwise be
euthanized. We are a no-kill, non-profit and tax-exempt
private Charitable Foundation.
(780) 963-4933 www.herveycats.com
JUST SO’S YOU NOSE!
you can subscribe to
creaturesall
by emailing
publisher@creaturesall.com
page21
R
iding the air currents, the
American White Pelican rises
to great heights soaring slowly
and gracefully. A majestic bird, the
American White Pelican is unmistak-
able even from far away with its white
coloring and distinctive long red bill.
Let me tell you about one American
White Pelican in particular, a bird I’ll
call Avery.
Avery is a juvenile American
White Pelican that lives on a reservoir
within the prairie region of Canada.
He will grow up to be a very large
white bird with a large red beak and
black patches on the underside of the
wings. His large bill also contains a
large throat sac used for food storage.
Avery comes from a family known
as the Pelicanidae, consisting of 8
different species of pelicans found
globally. The latin name (Pelecanus
erythrorhynchos) refers to the red bill
of the American White Pelican.
Historically, American White Pelicans
could be found throughout the interior
of North America but currently have
settled into approximately 50 colonies
found throughout Canada and another
18 colonies in the United States.
In Alberta, American White
Pelicans are found throughout all
regions where freshwater exists.
Pelicans nest on the ground on
islands of reservoirs or lakes,
marshes, and rivers. Typically
pelicans nest in the same spot
annually, unless drought conditions
and high predator populations
deem them unsuitable.
Avery will migrate south to warm
coastal waters during early Fall and
arrive back in North America during
Spring. He feeds primarily on fish
including Northern Pike and Lake
Whitefish, amphibians such as Tiger
Salamanders and frogs, as well as
aquatic invertebrates. Brown Pelicans
often dive underwater to catch their
food; American White Pelicans like
Avery, though, are more buoyant, so
diving is not really an option. Instead,
Avery surrounds fish in shallow water,
scooping them into his pouch. Taking
in both water and fish, Avery then
holds his bill upright to drain out the
water before swallowing the food.
Because pesticides and other chemi-
cals often make their way into water
supplies, American White Pelican
populations declined where pesticide
use has been high. In Canada, the ban
of pesticide use, such as DDT, has
helped the populations to stabilize and
even increase. However, these toxins
are still used in other countries where
pelicans spend their winters.
Though Avery is still a juvenile,
before long, he will begin looking for a
mate. When both the males and
females are ready to breed, they can
be identified by a yellow crest on their
heads; their bill and pouch also change
from yellow to orange. Courtship
rituals typically include bowing,
strutting, pointing their bills
towards the sky and short
courtship flights. Upon pairing,
the male and female will
choose and defend their small
nesting area. Pelicans make
their nest in a mound of
dirt, pebbles, or sticks surrounding a
small hole where the eggs are laid.
Avery’s mate, like other female
pelicans, breeds in colonies between
April and June and lays 2 to 3 eggs
each year with the largest clutch size of
up to 6 eggs. The parents incubate the
eggs for up to 29 days before hatching.
One parent will incubate the eggs,
while the other feeds.
Habitat degradation and illegal
hunting of pelicans have been other
common reasons for the decline in
American White Pelican populations.
Management of pelican habitat, along
with other colonial nesting habitat is
critical for the survival of Avery and his
family. Habitat projects to develop and
maintain suitable nesting grounds,
public awareness and partnerships are
critical for the survival of Avery and his
family. Currently it is illegal to shoot an
American White Pelican or disturb
nests or eggs at anytime in Alberta.
Remember to watch out for Avery
and other colonial birds along freshwa-
ter lakes and rivers across Alberta. If
you see a nest or eggs, please do not
vandalize them. ca
The Nature Conservancy of Canada
(NCC) is dedicated to conserving
habitat for wildlife species like the
American White Pelican. It is our hope
that one day, wildlife like Avery and
other fascinating species will no longer
be at risk. Call 1-877-262-1253 or
visit alberta@natureconservancy.ca
to help conserve habitat for
these important
endangered species.
SPACES and SPECIES
american white pelicans
by Kristie Romanow, Conservation Representative
page22
L’AMORE

ARTS
Pl aci ng the spi ri t of art i n your worl d
Susanne Lamoureux
(780) 443-2462
susanne@lamorearts.com
www.lamorearts.com
Proud Supporter of the
Hervey Foundation For Cats.
Inquiries about private
lessons and commissions
are welcome.
SOME FOLKS MERELY STAND OUT.
OTHERS ARE
OUTSTANDING!
creaturesall is proud to introduce
Christine (Cj) Perrin
marketing & communications
t•403-648-1793 cjperrin@creaturesall.com f•403-282-1899
www.happycatsanctuary.net

Stop in and
see our
Happy Cats
on display
at Sunridge
Petsmart
in Calgary.
I
was only 13 when, one warm April
afternoon, Dad rushed into the
house to breathlessly exclaim that
he’d just seen a Mountain Bluebird.
This was the first one he’d ever seen
on our small farm north-east of
Rimbey. He was so excited about the
sighting that we all piled into the old
half ton and drove back out to the far
pasture to see it. I will never forget
seeing that first flash of iridescent
blue; it was breathtakingly beautiful.
That evening, Dad made a call to our
friend, Melvin Baumbach of Bentley,
who arrived a day or two later with an
armload of bluebird boxes. Mr.
Baumach kindly helped us set the
boxes out around the pasture and our
efforts were rewarded when a pair of
bluebirds took up immediate
residence. I was hooked on bluebirds,
and each year built and set out more
boxes around our farm. Our
neighbours were soon doing the same.
The bluebirds in the area responded to
this generous provision of nesting sites
and now, forty years later, are quite
common in the area. My childhood
interest also led me to Ellis Bird Farm,
where I have enjoyed a twenty-year
career as their biologist, monitoring a
bluebird trail of some 350 boxes,
sharing my love of bluebirds with
others, and helping to carry on
the legacy of Charlie Ellis who,
with his sister, Winnie, founded Ellis
Bird Farm.
So just what is it about bluebirds
that has captured our imagination?
Why have thousands of volunteers
across North America set out tens of
thousands of boxes for them? Why are
there dozens of organizations across
North America dedicated to the
conservation of bluebirds?
Firstly, bluebirds are—as everyone
discovers upon their first sighting—
beautiful. We live in a part of the world
dominated by bird species that tend to
be a bit on the drab side. By contrast,
bluebirds are shockingly bright and
shockingly blue. Complementing their
azure attire is an endearing
temperament; they are gentle in nature
and their soft warble is beautifully
soothing. So touched have humans been
by the bluebird that the Pima First
Nations people of the southern states
have a legend about how the bluebird
got its colour. Over the centuries,
dozens of songs and poems have been
penned in their honour, and one of the
greatest naturalists of all time, Henry
David Thoreau, aptly quipped that “the
bluebird carries the sky on its back.”
Secondly, bluebirds are harbingers
of spring; they are one of the first
species to arrive back from their
overwintering grounds in Texas and
New Mexico. In central Alberta, we
begin in mid-March to scout the byways
and back roads, hoping to catch a
glimpse of that first burst of blue. A
healthy competition to spot the first
bluebird of the season exists among
bluebirders in each province and state,
and word of first sightings spreads
quickly throughout the community.
Which brings me to my final point.
Bluebirds are the recipients of much
human care and attention because they
are one of the few wildlife species that
we, as average citizens, can help
directly, right on our own farms,
acreages and neighbourhoods. In the
wild, bluebirds nest in old woodpecker
cavities, holes in clay banks and other
natural holes. This penchant for cavities
means that they will readily accept bird
boxes. The expression bluebird trail is
used to describe when five or more
boxes are set out along a prescribed
route. Establishing a bluebird trail is a
activity that can be undertaken by
young and old alike, with no special
training or tools required. Not
surprisingly, bluebird trails have
become one of the most widespread
grassroots conservation movements in
North America. Dozens of regional
groups have been established and there
is even an international organization
dedicated to bluebirds, the North
American Bluebird Society (NABS). ca
If you would like to find out more about
how you can get involved, check out
www.ellisbirdfarm.ab.ca or
www.nabluebirdsociety.org.
Why not plan to start your own
bluebird trail this spring?
WINGIN’ IT
stories from the bird farm
by Myrna Pearman, Biologist & Site
Services Manager — Ellis Bird Farm Ltd.
page23
page24
by Sheila Wirsch
A
s we were leaving the Calgary Humane Society, we noticed a young couple
placing notices on every vehicle’s windshield, hoping to find their six-week old
puppy a new home. Desperately talking to everyone they saw, exhausted and
disappointed, they seemed about ready to give up. Then, seeing us, they quickly
made another appeal for a home for their puppy. Since, coincidently, we were
looking for a companion of our own, we listened intently to what they had to say
and took their name and number and told them we’d think about it and call them
the next morning. When morning arrived we called for more information,
arranging to see the puppy that afternoon. Shortly after, Nipper was brought into
our home.
page25
The white diamond on her chest
enhanced her rich black coat while the
tips of her paws and tail were lightly
tinted with white. Standing straight up,
her tail wiggled loosely as she wobbled
unsteadily, looking for a spot to play or
do mischief. Sparkling eyes explored a
big new world until suddenly, she’d
tire, flop, then fall sleep.
We sensed something unique
about her.
Wanting to
constantly play,
Nipper loved
her favorite bril-
liant red ball. I would try and trick her
by throwing other balls of other colors,
but she ignored them. Repeatedly I
would throw that ball, my arm crying
out in protest, until at last she’d tire and
lay down. However, five minutes later,
she would grab her ball and reposition
herself to play once more. I was left
dumfounded and exhausted from trying
to keep up with her.
Walking Nipper was enjoyable,
especially when we would pass through
the park close to where we live. A
chain-link fence barricades a busy, high
traffic street, while the residential side
contains a kids play area. An electrical
station stands at one end and a well-
treed area at the other. On our walks,
as Nipper and I approached the
station, she would excitedly position
herself into her running stance, totally
focusing, waiting for my command, not
moving a muscle. Upon hearing “O.K,”
she would quickly take off with lighten-
ing speed, rocks and dirt flying, grit
and dust finding its way into my mouth
and leaving me sputtering. Running
with rapid acceleration in her full out
stride along the fence, she would turn
swiftly at the trees, run like wildfire
part way back, turn again, and run like
the wind back towards the stand of
trees. After stopping to catch her
breath, she would bolt again in the
opposite direction. After a few slower
paced runs back and forth, puffing like
a steam engine, she would lope
towards me one final time, continuing
on by, exploring and winding through
the trees while keeping close eye con-
tact on me.
Every so often during these walks,
I’d notice people stopping to watch
Nipper run. I could see, like me, they
were awestruck, their mouths hanging
open as she ran. Eventually, walking up
to me, they’d ask how she was trained
to run like that. All I could answer was,
“no training – she trained herself.”
Their expressions of amazement
showed disbelief, as they’d shake their
heads. Nipper’s great passion for
running revealed itself as her life’s
ambition. In her own world, she ran as
a free spirit.
One time Nipper disappeared,
leaving us deeply worried as we
searched for her. Our hearts began
sinking as time passed and she was
nowhere in sight. Deciding to walk in
the direction of the park, we suddenly
noticed a moving black form. There
was Nipper, happy as a lark, running
back and forth along the fence-line.
She had taken herself for a run. We
didn’t know whether to laugh, cry or
discipline her. We were ecstatic to find
her and know she was unharmed.
We came to class Nipper as an
environmentally friendly dog. Finding a
bone, she would carry it around and
when told to drop it, she would
absolutely refuse and head off in
another direction. When called back,
she wouldn’t listen.
One day I decided to follow her.
Going into neighboring properties,
disappearing into back yards, she
s e a r c h e d .
Upon finding
the perfect
spot and dig-
ging a hole,
she dropped in her bone and quickly
covered it up. Ritual complete, she
returned home with dried mud on
her nose, delighted at her
accomplishment.
Nipper enjoyed her runs and
continued to bury bones well on into
her later years. It became her ritual
and a vitality of life shone brightly
within her.
With the passing of time, we
noticed her begin to slow until
eventually she was no longer able to
continue her hard runs. But she
remained eager for her daily walks.
Always in a hurry, she would still
search for and bury any bones she
found.
The years started to take hold as
her age crept upwards. Nipper’s
walks became shorter and, approach-
ing 14 years of age, they gradually
ended as her health deteriorated.
Her soft whines expressed a pain that
was becoming more than she could
endure, and the cold of winter was
coming fast. With thoughts of deep
sadness we knew it was Nipper’s
time. Heartbroken, we decided to
end her pain and put her to rest.
Nipper was a beautiful dog that
loved life and she eagerly greeted
each new day with renewed energy.
The memories of her running and
burying bones f lood my mind
whenever I visit her park. Her
exuberance for life embraced all
those who knew her and I know her
spirit still runs free. I stand proudly,
watching her go.
Run, Nipper, Run! ca
With the passing of time, we noticed her begin to slow
page26
YOUTH SAID IT
snuggle buddies
I
have loved animals from a very
young age. I picked worms up
off the sidewalk and put them
on the grass. I voluntarily cleaned
stables at my friend’s farm. I took over our basement and
created a miniature veterinary clinic complete with a
surgery suite, brochures, and business cards. In my
younger years, I was turned away at animal shelters and
veterinary clinics. They told me I was too young to help out.
I waited in anticipation of the day I could start making a
difference by volunteering my time. I was not able to have
my own cat or dog when I was young – my father is allergic
to everything with fur. I had hamsters and fish that lived
very long and pampered lives and I got to occasionally take
care of my grandparents’ dogs, Taffy and Sparkle. Many a
wonderful vacation was spent playing with Taffy and
Sparkle up at the river. I cherished these times together.
Early on I realized that each animal is their own
distinct individual and should be treated with the kindness
and caring we as humans treat each other. I have known
since I was a young girl that I wanted to put my time and
talents into making the world a better place for animals. I
have chosen to become a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine.
This year was the year for me to make a difference in
the lives of animals in my community. I visited a local
animal shelter and noted that each animal is given a
comfort blanket or towel and a toy to call their very own. It
brought me joy to see that this small gesture lets the
animals know that they are loved and cared for. The
Snuggle Buddies Project was born. I created the Snuggle
Buddies Project to bring a bit of comfort and a lot of love
to the animals awaiting their new forever homes.
The Snuggle Buddies Project is a community-based
project that collects pre-loved blankets, towels and pet toys
from the public in Calgary and area and distributes them to
local animal shelters on a rotating basis. I organized the
first collection site at my school, and then began collecting
blankets at my church. After a generous donation of
containers by Great Western Containers I began asking
local businesses to host collection sites. After picking up the
blankets from the sites, I count, wash, tag and bundle them
all up nicely with a bow before distributing them to the
animal rescue societies. The first society we donated to was
the Rescue and Sanctuary for Threatened Animals
(RASTA) located in De Winton, Alberta. We were able to
give RASTA a much needed gift.
The community has responded with great enthusiasm
to the Snuggle Buddies Project. We have received
everything from blankets made just for animals to brand
new cat beds. We collected one hundred blankets and
towels in our first month! The Snuggle Buddies Project is
something that every community in Alberta can participate
in. If we all work together we can make a difference in the
lives of every animal in every shelter in our province. You
truly are never too young to make a difference.
I think that animals are such special beings; they teach
us so many things. They teach us to live life in the present,
enjoying every good thing that comes our way. They teach
us patience, and compassion. They trust us to give them a
loving and safe home and in return are loyal and love us
unconditionally. Because of this I choose to care! ca
Jessica's story was a past winner in the Alberta SPCA's Essay
Contest. Their current contest hopes to identify and reward
more ‘humane heroes’ like Jessica who are working to help
animals in Alberta. To find out how you can nominate a
Humane Hero or tell your story,
visit www.albertaspca.org ca
by Jessica Zutz
age 17
THE GARDENING BUG
the saga of the whitetail deer Pt2
by Elaine Rude, Master Gardener
T
he Earth
awakens
from its
long winter’s
nap, shuddering to release itself from
the remains of winter’s icy grip. New
life stirs, gradually at first then with
increasing purpose: tree buds swell,
green shoots emerge, and ground
squirrels venture forth to bask in the
warmth of the sun’s rays. It’s Spring,
the time when all creatures heave a
collective sigh of relief knowing that
the Earth will once again be warm and
green.
Whitetails regularly frequent our
place in spring, sampling emerging
garden foliage and flowering bulbs.
Tulips have been banished as they are
considered a delicacy worth traveling
great distances for. As well, the
gnarled old willows on the property
bear testament to the annual spring
pruning they receive from ravenous
deer.
To make up for months of near
starvation their appetites are huge at
this time of year. This is especially true
of females who are preparing to fawn.
In harsh winters malnourished does
will reabsorb the fetus increasing their
own chances of survival.
The majority of fawns arrive in
June. Delivery is quick and almost
bloodless (an adaptive strategy to
avoid alerting predators)with twins
being common. Within the hour fawns
are able to stand and nurse but do not
start traveling with their mothers for a
few weeks yet.
Only the strongest does survive
the winter to deliver guaranteeing
strong, vigourous fawns. For unknown
reasons, better nourished does have a
higher percentage of female fawns.
Female fawns are also more likely than
males to survive their first few weeks
of life.
Some years back my young son
and I were following a path through
the woods when we came across a
lovely spotted fawn tucked under a
large saskatoon bush. The fawn froze
seeking to become one with the
surrounding landscape. Refraining
from touching the little creature we
quietly crept away knowing that its
mother was hidden close by. Wildlife
rescue centers are inundated in spring
with fawns brought in by well-meaning
people who think they have been
abandoned.
Born scentless, newborn fawns
are more vulnerable to predation
when the mothers (who have a scent)
are present. Until able to travel,
newborns are hidden in the bush, the
does returning briefly throughout the
day to feed them.
Once the fawns are strong enough
to travel, individual family groups join
together spending the summer in small
herds. Bucks do not play any part in
fawn rearing preferring to spend
summers alone gaining strength for
the fall rut.
Educating the young ones begins
immediately with an introduction to
plants that are tasty(or not) and
where these can be found. Each herd
has its own territory and favourite
foods explaining why gardeners report
a mixed bag of plants being browsed.
Reports of deerproof plants should be
met with skepticism; it all depends on
what’s been tasted and deemed
acceptable. Most deer will refrain
from eating aromatic or fuzzy leaved
plants but when food becomes scarce
everything is fair game.
Each herd also has its own
hierarchy of favourite foods. At our
place it’s raspberries, roses and
lettuce (in that order). Deer adapt
readily so a revolving arsenal of
deterrents is required (the sooner
deterrents are utilized in the spring
the more effective they are). We have
employed almost all of them with
limited success: the motion activated
sprinkler kept them at bay for a while
until they discovered the water didn’t
go as far as the sensor was activated;
sprays worked well until the deer
learned they washed off after a rain.
We have had good luck with sprays
that are absorbed by the plants but
have to change them regularly as
eventually the deer become
accustomed to the smell or taste. A six
foot tall fence around the vegetable
garden has been the most effective but
five years after its installation, our
resident doe has discovered a couple
of spots where she can jump it. Much
to my chagrin she has been busy
passing this information on to all her
offspring!
As summer moves into autumn it
is imperative that the fawns eat
enough to ensure they grow rapidly
and gain weight. Only the biggest and
the strongest ones will make it to their
first birthday. ca
page28
403.241.3688
www.Luv2Garden.ca
elaine@Luv2Garden.ca
Paintbrush
Garden
Design
and
Consulting
Paintbrush
Garden
Design
and
Consulting
Elaine Rude
MASTER GARDENER
Mr. Len Webber , MLA
Member of the Legislative Assembly
Calgary-Foothills Constituency
403•288•4453
Proudly representing the Calgary communities of:
Citadel • Edgemont • Hamptons
Hidden Valley • Kincora • Sherwood
in the Alberta Legislature
Proud to support
creaturesall
in sharing enriching
stories with
Alberta readers,
young and old!
page29
©
by Très Bore
HUNTING FOR JUST THE WRITE WORDS
I’ve eaten some critters in my time,
many not meant to be eaten.
Whatever I stalked, I always made sure
‘twas they, not I, would be beaten.
There was the Sudanese Butterfly,
a boast I make somewhat coyly.
I made a salad from its right wing;
from the left, an ashtray doily.
China, I learned, was home to
a deer; exceedingly rare.
I hopped on my quad and hunted it down,
and now it’s my living room chair.
A swamp in Guam was home to a newt;
at least until I got there.
I found it sunning on a log.
‘nuff said, it’s no longer there.
The whole world has been my oyster.
Yes, I’ve hunted those too.
I tossed the pearls back in the sea.
All I wanted was oyster stew.
I traveled to Northern Canada,
home of the world’s last Whoop,
a bird on the edge on extinction,
from which I made Whoop Soup.
I’m of half a mind to call it quits.
But before I do you know,
there’s one last critter I need to bag.
One last place I need to go.
I’m off to darkest Bolivia,
to bag some Spotted Bear Fleas.
I mash ‘em up and powder them
to make rare
Spotted Flea
Cheese.
Alas . . .
My hunting career’s over.
As a poet I’m filled with despair.
You see, I find it tough writing
from inside this Bolivian Bear.
page30
THE FINALWORD
saying goodbye
by Clayton Kyle
J
ust prior to her 16th birthday we
laid to rest our beloved family
dog Murphy. Murphy was a light
brown and white American
Staffordshire Terrier and considered
the runt of the litter.
Your size never equaled the
unconditional love you displayed to
everyone you met. You always made
us smile and laugh. From the time
you came home as a puppy, with
oversized paws and ears, to the
day you had to move on, at no
point did we ever wonder
where your heart was.
Try as we did, obedi-
ence was never easy to
impose on Murphy.
Although the words
“Murphy Come” have
escaped my lips hun-
dreds, if not thousands,
of times, they often only
preceded a confused
head tilt followed by a
burst of speed and free
will in whatever opposite
direction the command
had been issued. Following
a frustrated sigh came the
long walk/run to gather her up
to return home. I know it was
never fear that caused her to bolt
but rather a sense of pure freedom
I’m sure she felt when surrounded by
nothing more than acres of flat land and
owners with a soft spot for large doe eyes.
Either that or she thought it was fun to have us
chase her for hours and hours….it was.
Murphy was always full of energy. Although she tired in
her later years, I believe that was only physical. I’m sure,
had her small body been able to keep up, on her last day
she would have happily romped through the snow banks
with whomever would join her. She was full of love. On a
bad day she could always make you smile. With uncontrol-
lable happiness she would greet us on the deck, spinning in
circles, ears laid down, tail between legs and tongue ready
to give unending kisses, she was always there for us.
Murphy, although you are no longer with us physically,
you will always be with us spiritually. You will never be
forgotten by those who love you. You’ve given us many truly
great and happy moments and memories. You’re energy
inspired us. You’re love gave us happiness and warmth. You
are my friend and will truly be missed. ca
watercolour
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“Celebrating 88 years of doing business in Calgary”

Famous wildlife artist Robert Bateman wants to see what you've created that has been inspired by nature. The 2009 Get to Know contest is all about getting out into nature and sharing with others the discoveries you have made. Any Canadian 19 years of age or younger can enter. And if your piece of artwork, writing or digital photography is chosen, you will receive prizes and have your work published in the Robert Bateman 2010 International Year of Biodiversity Calendar. The new Get to Know Interactive CD features “virtual hikes” which offer students the opportunity to virtually explore parks and conservation areas in Toronto, Edmonton, Calgary and Vancouver. During the hike, students meet and get to know their wild neighbours of other species. Other elements of this dynamic, interactive media resource include:
An exclusive Canadian collection of wildlife videos and audio clips Easy to use lesson plans focused around getting out of doors Videos featuring Robert Bateman speaking directly to students and teachers Interactive nature games and quizzes Links to outstanding educational resources

2009 Contest Dates:

Earth Day, April 22nd to May 27th, 2009
Visit gettoknow.ca for entry information

Order your own copy from the Get to Know website! Robert Bateman’s objective is not to replace real outdoor experiences with indoor ones, but rather to familiarize youth with local species as a catalyst for them to go outdoors and experience the real thing. The following school districts in Alberta have received the Robert Bateman Get to Know Interactive CD:

Edmonton Area Edmonton Public School Board Edmonton Catholic Schools Elk Island Public Schools Black Gold Regional School District Parkland School Division Greater St. Albert Catholic Schools Sturgeon School Division Aspen View Regional Division St. Albert Protestant Schools Elk Island Catholic Schools

Red Deer Area Red Deer Public School District Red Deer Catholic Calgary Area Calgary Board of Education Calgary Catholic [Separate] School District Rocky View School Division #41 Canadian Rockies Public Schools Grasslands Public Schools

The distribution of the Interactive CD in Alberta is courtesy of the Alberta Conservation Association, Alberta Lottery Fund, BP Canada, Shell Environmental Fund and TD Friends of the Environment Foundation. *shipping/handling/taxes extra

Issue 20
Advertising & Promotion Inquiries Christine (Cj) Perrin cjperrin@creaturesall.com 403-648-1793 Graphic Design & Story Inquiries Bob Fielder publisher@creaturesall.com Account Information Linda Fielder editor@creaturesall.com

February-March/2009

In This Issue
Zippity Doo Dah – Kelly Dodge

Printing-Rhino Print Solutions-Calgary/Vancouver Stock Photography-dreamstime.com

8 16 19 24 29

Mailing address: creaturesall P.O. Box 126, Langdon, AB T0J 1X0 403-512-9544
creaturesall is published 6 times per year (February, April, June, August, October and December) by 1160613 ALBERTA LTD. and distributed freely in Alberta or via subscription the first week of the publication month. Advertisers and contributors assume responsibility and liability for the accuracy of their claims and statements. The opinions and views expressed in articles do not necessarily reflect those of the Publisher or advertisers. creaturesall reserves the right to refuse any advertising. Written submissions become the property of creaturesall on publication. By proferring your photographs or written submission you grant us permission to reproduce it in creaturesall, other printed media, on our web site or as a component of an online download. All submissions will receive a reply if email address is provided.
Writers & Cover Artists may make submissions by email to:

Fleeced – Keren Muthsam A Lizard-like Leap of Faith – CJ Mouser Dog on the Run – Sheila Wirsch Hunting for Just the Write Words – Très Bore

Columns
Wagging Tales – Dr Richard Weger - B.Sc., DVM Creature Feature – Cyril Brass - photographer & writer Taking Down the Fences – Dianne Wittner - A.I.W.C. Spaces and Species – Kristie Romanow - NCC Wingin’ It – Myrna Pearman - Ellis Bird Farm Youth Said It – Jessica Zutz - Snuggle Buddies The Gardening Bug – Elaine Rude - Master Gardener Obsolete – cari-creatures by Sean Skerry The Final Word – Clayton Kyle - Saying Goodbye

11 13 15 21 23 26 27 28 30

publisher@creaturesall.com
Copyright 2005 by 1160613 ALBERTA LTD.

Cover Artist
Kelly Dodge Canadian artist Kelly Dodge regards her inspirations and artistic talent as gifts from God and considers it a great blessing to be surrounded by this natural world of beauty and discovery. Each of her paintings has something specific to say, communicating the essence of creation in simplicity and truth. Primarily painting in pastel, Kelly is perhaps best known for her ongoing focus on birds often combined inspirationally with traditional Christian hymns. She has also garnered much popularity with a second series, pastel paintings portraying breathtaking views of the constellations. www.kellydodgeart.com

Departments
Publisher’s Note Letters In Passing

5 7 18

page3

ca C O M M I S S I O N E D A RT W O R K & P R I N T S • G R A P H I C D E S I G N S E R V I C E S • ( 4 0 3 ) 2 4 5 .MandaLeaf D E S I G N SELECTED ITEMS AVAILABLE AT 2032 .34TH AVENUE SW OR CONTACT carlapelkey@shaw.4 3 8 6 page4 .

what’s a fellow to do? FREE notwithstanding. Having made all of the aforementioned conditions prerequisite to getting another dog. But . So. is kennel trained. We had every intention of sticking to our guns on every condition . Not good for a publisher. I have my criteria. This. In the sorry event my English skills have deteriorated to the point that you are rendered unable to read between the lines — I recently decided to get another dog. happy mutt.. I have a volunteer that works for me and she has a cinnamon colored.com A Natural And Balanced Daily Supplement For Your Pet Available soon at: Fairplay Stores Ltd. . All that is now left to do. I like cats. then write Bob & Linda Fielder I FIND MYSELF DOGLESS OF LATE. Secondly. until. we’ve had cats too. The pup arrives this week. 1 year old. I wanted a female pup. rescued. Firstly.) For myself. I ask you. not good for me. . lab/german shepherd cross. I also wanted to be sure I would be able to buy pet insurance for whatever dog chose to share our home. not a puppy. I remember my mom once saying you should never settle on the name for a child or a pet until you've yelled it out at the top of your lungs from your doorstep on a warm summer’s night.. female newcomer would need to have a clean bill of health. Golden Schitz-Poo. already know what a fellow’s to do. genetically engineered. I now find myself dogless. a cat is no dog. I wanted a young dog. Their total lack of concern regarding whether I like them or not is. Truth be told. for me. bana ca iV Wl ital www. I wanted a rescue dog. We recently lost both of our dogs within 4 months of one another. carries with it aimlessness. our next door neighbor had a little boy named ‘Dale’ and I remember hearing his mom yelling for him at dinner time from her front step one warm summer evening . humorlessness. what I like most about them. Paws Pet Food Pisces Pet Emporium 403•264•8281 Advertiser and Story Submission Deadline for Next Issue – Mar 6th/09 page5 . I was looking for a healthy. . I stop here to apologize to those of you who have chosen to do otherwise and have purchased your own $1500. I think you.wilvitalcanada. (which is itself in more need of rescue than might at first be thought. Although dogs have absolutely no standards regarding who or what they will sidle up to and pledge everlasting allegiance. .PUBLISHER’S NOTE encouraging you to read. based on the premise she would already be housebroken and I would therefore not need to contend with surprise deposits of Schitz-Poo on our living room rug. not to mention an accompanying overall disregard for all the basic rules of proper English. The dog is spayed and has all of its shots up to date. They were good company and saw in me qualities I never truly possessed. At the time. Would you and Auntie Linda be interested at all? The dog is FREE. we received the following email from our loving and caring niece just last week: Hi Uncle Bob! I wanted to send some information to you and wondered if you were interested. . It’s not that we’ve never had other critters about the place. . We also have three horses and an equal number of goats scattered about. that is. . based on the fact that everything I’ve learned about patience I’ve learned from my wife. DAAAAAAAAA DAAAAAAAAAAA ALE! AALE!! and hearing my dad immediately respond at the top of his lungs . motivationlessness. comes with its kennel and toys. Also. paradoxically. all of which do their part to brighten my day. But there’s just something about a dog. h Daylig et come and m wan’ go home! Mister Cometall t an y me allymna. we also decided to put off looking until summer. this young. is choose a suitable name. Doglessness. who by now have most certainly discerned the secret of reading between the lines. . both to the vagaries of old age. but hopefully under a year. After some 15 years of dogs about the place. has obedience classes and is a rescue dog. fully trained pup that she needs to find a home for. In order to do that. One can not be too careful in this regard.

ca Harvey Dougan 403-934-3640 page6 . mushrooms and cat-tails.artcountrycanada. cats.com Art Country Canada Bragg Creek.prestigefineartframing.asp Prestige Fine Art & Framing Okotoks. Alberta www.wendypalmer-artist. Alberta www. sunflowers.com For more information on upcoming exhibitions please visit my website www.avenidagalleries.com artist Limited Edition Giclée on canvas art reproductions available at these Artists for Conservation Supporting Nature through art www. frogs.com/wendy_palmer. roses. dogs. Alberta www. All of my pieces are created from the recycled hoods of cars and trucks.natureartists. historic buildings. COUNTRY CREATIONS Metal Sculptures hnhdougan@shaw. I do take orders for gift-giving and keep an inventory of a variety of sculptures on hand.com Some of the sculptures I have completed include pheasants. I rework the heavy gauge metal using an assortment of tools and techniques which owe much to the now bygone age when blacksmithing and handcraftsmanship were the only options available.WENDY PALMER Fine Art Galleries: Avenida Art Gallery Calgary.

Susan Wider This subscription if a present for my sister-in-law. Could you send me information on deadlines. starting after making it through the first few sentences.LETTERS paw prints and pen scratches readers write Thank you for your return phone call yesterday morning advising that back issues of creaturesall are available! Financial restraints make it impossible to purchase all the copies I need (Issue #1 to #14 and #16) at one time. There are still people out there who appreciate it and people who have the compassion to go out of their way to help an animal friend in need. Alister Thomas Still enjoying your magazine as much as ever. Jan and Tom Lockhart. and especially the story content. I am very much interested in submitting some writing to your magazine. I just went to your website to look for writer's guidelines and found that the site is being revamped. My name is Keith Sandulak. The hopefulness of creaturesall is a lovely respite from so much of the negative content in many magazines one picks up. A very good family friend introduced your excellent publication to us with Issue #15 and advised she had obtained it as a complimentary copy from either Safeway or Sobeys in Calgary. Carla Pelkey I saw an advertisement in the current issue of creaturesall (issue 19. and would be interested in submitting articles. Keep up with your publication. Rollo I've enjoyed reading creaturesall magazine for some time now. Keep up the good work. The Final Word by Susan Sweetman in the 19th issue. Congrats on all you do. I'm sending for a renewal of my dad's subscription and for my girlfriend. has been framed and the article proudly displayed in our living room for visiting family and friends alike to read. Malorie and Clayton My friend and I pooled our resources to give yet another friend creaturesall as a birthday gift from the two of us. Janna Hi. A. Al Dahl I do love your magazine! Patty Axenroth I'm in the process of issuing a cheque to be sent out your way for a subscription for Catherine Tudhope in Calgary. Thanks for a great magazine which we each enjoy thoroughly. etc? Tim Battle The Alberta SPCA I really like your magazine and am considering submitting an article. My wife shot this picture this morning. Keith Sandulak page7 . word counts. so here's the money to keep ‘em coming. In tough times it is a welcome light. but I am curious as to the sorts of things you are looking for. What topics? Fictional or non-fictional? What are the length requirements? Or are you merely looking for anything that would fit into your magazine? Thank you. I have a farm outside of Alberta Beach just north west of Edmonton. I enjoy the exceptional art work. Jan had suggested I email you and introduce myself as an artist and possible contributor with some of my work. thank you. Your publication just gets better and better. Thanks. These days people are so busy. Cathy Woiwod I'm very pleased to send in my renewal for creaturesall . and your wonderful articles remind us of the beautiful life that surrounds us day to day. Can you email me your guidelines in the meantime? Many thanks. We love the magazine so much because it's one of a kind. Please keep it coming. It is such an excellent publication for the whole family! We frequently care for our three granddaughters and with every issue we now sit down together and read and discuss every article that is age appropriate. you're doing a great job giving voice to all the animals. For myself. I read Susan Sweetman’s article. I believe) that simply said “call for artists and writers”. beginning with issue #20. as best I could through tears streaming down my face. And I'd like to get a second subscription as well. which I thought showed me in good company.I don't want to miss an issue. Linda Hoffman Thanks for another wonderful year of reading. from cover to cover. I was in Calgary this weekend drawing cartoons for some Christmas parties and had the pleasure of seeing your magazine while staying with my cousins. so caught up in life. Once again. Dee Morita Pacific Assistance Dogs Society Well. What a story.

allowing the bluebirds to easily come and go while keeping them safe from dangerous predators like cats. His waiting parents would take the mealworms down into the cage to feed him. He still landed on the lawn. I figured he could just hop his way up through the branches to join his brothers and sisters. Daily I would put Zippy out in an old cockatiel cage from which I had removed the lid. raccoons. this particular one tried to fly out backwards. I now joined the parents in a co-parenting venture. squirrels etc. I have an old suet cage stapled to the outside of our bluebird box. however I was sure that once his wings strengthened he would be able to compensate for his wobbly foot. The day the babies fledged. Unable to comply on his own steam. It was turned backwards and folded under his front toes. this time facing the correct direction. I picked him up and returned him to the edge of the I now joined the parents in a co-parenting venture box. he was born with a crippled hind toe not at all conducive to balancing with underdeveloped wings. The parents repeatedly called to their young and appeared to withhold feeding in an attempt to entice them to leave their now cramped quarters and join them in the real world. Z This little guy was the last of his 4 siblings to fledge and somehow he managed to get himself turned around.ippity Doo Dah is a fledgling I once had the pleasure of assisting. It turned out that Zippy's wings weren't fully developed and to add to his troubles. crickets. run out and serve them whenever they flutter at my back window. Zippy's parents nest each year in our bluebird box and are among the many spring birds that come for handouts to my back patio. His parents continued to call to him. They would also bring him grasshoppers. Leaping out backwards he landed on the lawn and did not have enough strength to gain altitude. attempting to entice him to a safer location. not to mention vulnerable open space on the lawn. I would supple- page8 . The parents don't seem to mind it. he allowed me to take him to the bottom of the basswood tree that his siblings were perched in. He promptly fell off the branch! We repeated the attempt and he promptly fell off a second time. He was quite tuckered out from having made two failed attempts. He was also in a very visible. Or rather they are among the many that have managed to train me to drop everything. caterpillars and other such delicacies. It functions as a great predator guard.

When they were blown down during a storm. when Zippy had an itch . They would alternate his feedings with those of his siblings who were perched high in the trees around our home. The parents continued to feed them at these intervals until they had gained enough wing strength to successfully fledge. I bet you are wondering how I knew which one was Zippy. After a week Zippy's wings strengthened enough for flight and balance. I would also keep him in during the night. It was a privilege to escort Zippy to the middle of the lawn where he successfully launched himself into the stratosphere! It was a blessing to see him join his parents and siblings in the sky. Each morning his parents would greet us and faithfully continued to feed him at intervals while he perched on a branch in my old cockatiel cage. so she kept the nestlings in the house. The last time I saw my little bluebird friend he was sitting on a hydro wire with his 4 brothers and sisters and Mom and Dad. Well.ment his diet in the house with mealworms when I was unable to supervise him outside. . I credit my mom with the idea for this concept. She had co-parented 3 very young Baltimore Oriole nestlings many years ago on the farm. you see. she became worried about the farm cats getting them. . taking them out several times a day to perch in a low branch. he would wobble just a bit as he scratched! ca page9 by Kelly Dodge .

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Early that morning my mother had gotten up to let Mitzy outside and had found her laid out on her favorite pillow unable to move. His compassion and empathy for others had instilled in me a great respect for veterinarians. Abruptly. shook his hand.” she said in a trembling tone. he explained to us in a soft manner that Mitzy had most likely suffered a stroke and that the most humane thing was to let her go. The next morning I was awakened brusquely from L my slumber by my mother. Stone. Dr. In those days. he had left a lasting impression. and led me to become one of them.” Prior to this event I had never lost anybody close to me. I had lived in a state of denial where I believed that my friends and family would always be there for me and that they would live forever. I found that I gained some comfort from Dr. my longtime friend and companion Mitzy. Although we were happy to see each other. the impetus behind this collective was a sad and somber one. He began to speak of his humble beginnings and spoke with tearful recollection of the many joys and sadness that he experienced over his many years in veterinary practice. Though I was happy to see my human family. After the procedure was finished. Flying through the doorway and alerting the staff to our situation we were quickly directed to an examination room. “She is at peace now. Shaking my head I returned my attention back to Dr. After the testimonials I approached Dr. there was a canine member of our clan that I missed terribly. Mitzy and I spent that evening sitting comfortably in front of the living room fireplace enjoying our favorite past time of watching movies and all was right in the world. Although we had just met I trusted this man and I knew that his words rang true. I stood amongst a small group of my colleagues from the veterinary hospital and we made the chit chat that often accompanies large social gatherings.WAGGING TALES stories from a veterinarian’s clinic by Dr. the music was silenced and a hush born of sincere admiration descended over the crowd. and it is for that gift I can never repay. While listening to Dr. DVM oud music filled the grand hall and I unconsciously tapped my foot to the strangely addictive beat of a two decade old melody. A local veterinary legend was hanging up his stethoscope for good and journeying on to other pastures. I looked into Dr. Gathering my dog in my arms. Stone’s speech. Richard Weger. Stone placed his hand on my shoulder and with a soft smile said. Stone’s words. Although I realized that he did not remember me from those many years ago. I and my family quickly rushed to the emergency veterinary hospital located only a few blocks away. He lifted Mitzy from my arms with great care and gently examined her. Mendel. Dr. The harsh reality of life crashed down on me and woke me from my delusion. “Something is wrong with Mitzy. Tiko and his cat. page11 . Stone. as I relived the day’s events over and over in my mind. Stone’s earnest speech my thoughts drifted to how this great man had unknowingly placed me on the path I follow today. B. Later that day. After a brief discussion we decided as a family to let Mitzy pass on. ca Dr. He is currently owned by his Senegal parrot. specializing in exotic veterinary medicine. After a time. and related to him how much he would be missed both by staff and client alike. Arriving from school I burst into the doorway and was greeted enthusiastically by my diminutive friend and was immediately barraged with sloppy wet kisses. Today. Stone stood proudly at the podium and pondered the assembly that lay before him. I had followed the more esoteric studies of genetics and was looking to eventually get my PhD and spend my time doing research. The emergency doctor on staff was a gentleman who introduced himself as Dr. Stone’s eyes and I could see the compassion that rested behind them. As I looked around I could make out the familiar faces of both current and past employees. This small spark plug of a dog had been our family’s first pet and we had happily enjoyed her antics since the first day that she had adopted us as her human caregivers.. one of the originating partners of the hospital had decided to finally retire. It began many years ago after I had returned from University for spring break. Dr. Mitzy was a scrappy 15yr old Pomeranian whose main distinguishing feature was her long and hairy bat like wings. one of our own was stepping down. As I held my longest and best friend in my arms. Richard Weger is a graduate of the Western College of Veterinary Medicine.Sc. Stone. I began to sob as I realized that I would never again see my friend.

Stop by our studio or visit: www.memories made timeless We welcome you to visit the studio on our farm near Cremona.com 403-637-2274 403-803-8039 Diane M. www.dianeandersontymarc.com tymarc@xplornet.com for some wonderfully unique and surprisingly affordable gift giving ideas. beautiful drive north of Calgary.dianeandersontymarc. Just a short. Anderson page12 .

Their arboreal habitats are situated in humid tropical regions with dense lush foliage consisting of shrubbery. rust. Certain death lies only a few meters away Patiently they wait for potential prey such as small rodents. the Eyelash Palm Pit Viper is one of the most dangerous of the venomous snakes in Central America. spiny scales positioned above the eyes. Even though they carry only a few milligrams of venom.com 403-999-1908 page13 . . As most snakes are nocturnal. brown. C surroundings. and trees not far from permanent water sources like swamps. they are paradoxically. lizards and small birds to pass by them. The most prominent features of the Eyelash Palm Pit Viper are its colourations. resembling eyelashes. It is amazing that such vibrantly coloured snakes can become invisible amongst the jungle vegetation. Slowly. While hiking in the lush jungles. But I did see two of these deadly creatures during a hike in the coastal rainforests of Tortuguero National Park. a deadly predator. These vipers possess heat sensitive organs or pits located on either side of the head between the eye and nostril which allows them to identify the direction of potential prey. tour guides stress to visitors not to get too close to wild tropical flowers like heliconias for that very reason. these snakes can be seen resting on branches or broad leaves sunning themselves until an opportune time presents itself for a meal. a golden yellow colour. that was an Eyelash Palm Pit Viper. When spotted. streams or rivers The wide array of colours like red. and most of all. Cautiously I took a couple of steps closer to the small motionless snake which enabled me to see clearly the distinctive ridges above the eyes. inject venom. These pit vipers get their name from this distinctive patch of upright pointed scales over each eye.cyrilbrass. I would guess that in all my treks through tropical rainforests. I backed away. helps them blend into their the colours of the bark. the Eyelash Viper hunts from late evening through the early morning. I have passed by several of these snakes without spotting them in the thick vegetation. the second pit viper. . . Possessing a prehensile tail. frogs. The Eyelash Palm Pit Viper . Pit vipers have large hypodermic needle-like fangs positioned in the upper jaw. a nocturnal hunter . always in an ambush position and ready to strike. www. Sometimes they wrap themselves around colourful heliconia blooms waiting for unsuspecting hummingbirds searching for juicy nectar. The first one was situated about a meter above the ground. green. the Eyelash Palm Pit Vipers possess rough and sharp scales believed to protect themselves against tree branches and to aid in their camouflage against potential predators. triangular shaped head. What an excellent ambush sight. was spotted curled up on a flat broad leaf right beside the walking trail. Costa Rica. vines.5 inches). a colourful snake . Yes. rarely exceeding 75 cm (29. yellow.CREATURE FEATURE the eyelash palm pit viper by Cyril Brass olourful but deadly. and various colour combinations thereof. Then just several meters further along the trail. . . these tree dwelling predators are able to catch and eat prey while suspending midair from a branch. Grey-green in colour this pit viper was clinging to the bark of a towering tree and blending in with Unlike most snakes whose scales are smooth. tan. just one drop of this potent venom is extremely toxic to humans. wait for the quick and inevitable death of their victim and then swallow it. ca Cyril Brass is a Wildlife and Sports Photographer living in Calgary. Appearing to be in a resting position. It is also one of the smallest snakes. . This is of great value to a night hunter. They attack prey quickly.

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Brian and I walked past the house and into the forest. she showed interest in flying again and in two weeks she was ready to return to the evergreen forest from which she had come. Brian brought the owl inside his house and when it opened its eyes to look at him. Like a will-o-the-wisp she vanished into the night while Brian and I stared at the inky forest hoping to hear or see another sign of her. Brian explained to me how he had been reading up on owls. As darkness swallowed us we had to work by the distant glow of the yard light and the faint beam emanating from Brian’s flashlight. Brian watched for a time and noticed the bird kept its eyes closed and seemed unable to leave. AIWC offers education programs. I knew we wouldn’t but it didn’t matter. Brian is in his second year of university where he is studying conservation biology. the kind of soft noise that wouldn’t attract much notice. “In fact. Eleven years later. Since they are non-migratory. It began with a subtle thump on a living room window. I could feel her heart thumping. In four days. It would have been thrilling for Brian to release her himself but his lack of training could put her at risk of injury. This speckled raptor is very elusive and weighs about the same as a robin. It took some persistent effort for Brian to track us down as he had no idea there was such a thing as a wildlife hospital. Brian was okay with that. The very word ‘owl’ conjures up images of huge yellow eyes and mystical nights in the forest. I think that little owl has changed all of us. Alberta’s most successful bird of prey. Rowling got it right when she made an owl the symbolic bird of magic. the Great Horned Owl is familiar to most.aiwc. absorbing her familiar surroundings and wishing the annoying humans would leave. he instinctively felt something was wrong.TAKING DOWN THE FENCES me and you and an owl named boo by Dianne Wittner J . has power of a different sort. the tiny Boreal Owl. “I doubt he’ll ever look at birds the same. it was a safe bet the owl lived on or near Brian’s property. ca AIWC’s injured wildlife and wildlife control hotline is open 365 days a year. Half an hour later.” Her eyes misted a bit but Brian beamed with pride at what he had done. undoubtedly energized by fear and anticipation. I identified the tiny raptor and explained what would happen to her. her imminent freedom was more important. Twelve species of them live in Alberta and each is magical and awe-inspiring. when it hadn’t moved.ca. volunteers and donors! Contact AIWC at 403-946-2361 or online at www. Brian’s parents drove him and his precious cargo to AIWC on a frigid Sunday evening. Southern Alberta and the Northwest Territories. Surrounded by spruce. It was not surprising the owl had suffered head trauma but her prognosis was good. Later. he told us how he saw both courage and fear in those eyes and how he would never forget experiencing an overwhelming feeling of urgency. As luck would have it a boy named Brian investigated the thump and found a feathered bundle no bigger than a softball huddled in the snow next to the porch railing. particularly Boreal Owls. Then there is the magnificent Snowy Owl. but for one young boy it had the power to change his life. compelling him to take immediate action. Though I’d like to take credit for the life path he chose. we imagined her perched high in a tree staring down at us.” Brian’s mother told me. and opportunities for members. I met him there just as it was getting dark. even after hundreds of encounters. a species he had never even heard of before this encounter. One of the least known. away from the threat of windows and rambunctious dogs. serving Calgary. Together. Boreal Owls are named for the habitat in which they live and Brian’s home was in the heart of it. page15 .K.ca. In full support of their son’s ‘call to action’. and http://aiwcwildlifecontrol. The owl went into examination as I sat down with Brian to obtain the bird’s history and start the necessary paperwork. an intimidating grey ghost found everywhere in the province. he was transfixed by the piercing intensity of that gaze. largest of them all with power enough to capture hares outweighing them by fifty percent. I lifted the owl out of the box and gave her a moment to get her bearings. I think it has more to do with the piercing eyes of a magical owl of the boreal forest.

five goats in a tiny backyard get a little difficult to feed. She offered to bring them out to me. One seemed to have had a broken leg some years ago and as a result had a funny jumping gait. I wouldn’t be telling you this story now. sometimes I wish my answer would have been ‘no’. A week passed and I hadn’t heard from her. The five of them had been living in a tiny backyard in the middle of Wagga Wagga – the largest inland city in New South Wales for those that aren’t familiar with Australia. The family had started off with one bottle baby – the old girl who kept following me around. which is why I ended up being asked to take them in. had urine all over their faces and front legs. it was a funny little group of goats indeed that I had taken in. As we know. Of the five.“ o D how the two bucks weren’t flystruck around the pizzle I do not know. and the neighbours and council weren’t real pleased about it either. when I inspected the guys later after shearing. I have trouble with pizzle strike in my own bucks and wethers. I noticed one testicle had been missed on both the guys. apart from her first name (and that’s not a hard thing to do because it’s on her name tag). I discovered the sad story that was their life before arriving at my place. only one was friendly and wouldn’t stop following me around. until one day a car and trailer pulled up in my driveway with five … goats doesn’t seem to be the right description. perhaps? Well. ‘Hey. walked up to me one winter day at the hospital. Digging through their mohair. Questioning the lady a little more. as far as I could tell. had I said no. I have five angora does. you have goats. The other two girls were about 8 years old. sure enough. going by their mouths. however. strangely enough. resulting in animals that looked like bucks and had all the charming habits that bucks have. She looked ancient and I guessed her to be around 12 yrs old. page16 . and a few years later they bred her again and got twin bucks. The buck kids they banded. and six months later. would you like them?’ Since this was a freebie deal. A fellow nurse that I really didn’t know very well. The two boys. there were ‘boy bits’ there. but weren’t fertile. I agreed and told her where my house was. But then again. They discovered that goats make really good pets so they decided to breed her … she had twin does. Wooly mammoths. Two of the does. fleeced by Keren Muthsam you want five goats?” The five simple words that started it all. even with shearing every six months and crutching at three months growth. were 6 years old.

They did calm down somewhat although they will never be very friendly. Since I decided I didn’t want to subject my regular shearer to them. It didn’t take them long to knock down the grass in that paddock. and they were not friendly enough to be rehomed as pets. Shearing was an interesting affair. But now. because they were skin and bones and just had no fight in them when I pulled them off the trailer. she has gone to be a pampered pet and a pack goat near Melbourne. didn’t need any work because she was so friendly. happily shearing away. It took a long time before they were comfortable around my young nephews and the dogs. Perhaps the best part of the story is where good old Ellie has ended up. This will be a better situation for them as they will have large spaces to roam. not exactly the tallest. they just weren’t completely suited to a small acreage like mine. Victoria’s capital city. I thought that the hard work I put into those goats wasn’t worth it. I just recently sold them pregnant to a young man just getting started in goats. So they went into a one acre paddock with grass and weeds up to their bellies. Catching them for shearing was an interesting story in itself. but the other girls (Lucky and Cheryl) had some pretty extensive psychological issues from their previous ‘home’. and kept eating them at a steady rate. currently researching fleece quality in sheep and fibre goats. the radio in the shed started playing that old Aussie song ‘Click go the shears’. About a month after I got them.” Now that’s a story with a happy ending! I hear from their new owners every once in a while. Sweet old thing. I did them myself with a good set of hand shears. So it was high time they got rid of their fleece. she opens the doors to let herself in and out. screaming. I decided it was probably time to do a bit more work on them. The three girls remained on my place for about a year. and they were very happy goats. I have trouble with pizzle strike in my own bucks and wethers. They looked like they had missed the last three shearings. page17 . Since they only had one testicle each they weren’t any use as breeding bucks. kicking. They were completely petrified of small children and dogs – leading me to believe they were chased and harassed by both. it has been a very satisfying experience and I am happy that I turned those goat’s lives around. they were wise to me. And this is where the story ends for the two boys. She is being spoiled rotten and has taken well to her new job as a pack goat.The first thing to do was get some condition on them. Now I am only 150cm and 50kg. though. I set up some gates in the paddock and had a couple of friends over and we tried to chase them up into the gates. I will admit. Boer and Dairy goats. At the time. and how the two bucks weren’t flystruck around the pizzle I do not know. She also teaches local school students about preparing livestock for shows along with tending her own stud flock of about 50 Angora. You wouldn’t believe me but honestly this is true — as I was shearing one of them. The devoured two mineral blocks in the first day. “Did you know she is house trained? She got into the house one night. The story continues for the does. In the end. The old girl. On the third go round we were successful. It also took them a while to settle into ‘herd life’ – living with and interacting with other goats was something very new to them. For about a week I tried feeding them in an old stock crate out in the paddock. I was pleased to feel they now had some meat and fat on their bones and that they put up more of a struggle when I handled them. and I should have said no at the start. My doors and paddock gates are still open to rescue goats. people-orientated goats. Her new owner sent me an email saying. hoping that I could shut them in. No luck. flopping and me sitting on top of the animal. even with shearing every six months and crutching at three months growth. heaviest or strongest person so it became a battle of wits. It took me a while but I finally uncovered five reasonable looking goats under all that hair. and she doesn’t pee or poop in there. and they had to learn how to really ‘be a goat’. and I know they are being well looked after. during which I did a lot of work rehabilitating them. ca Keren Muthsam a full time university student based in Yerong Creek in NSW. Australia. who I named Ellie. with the goats biting.

You had begun to take root in our hearts and minds. We could not have known how many emotions that you could evoke in us. at first. They did not know you as we did. admired her. Alas. We should have known when you snuggled up to our bodies. Take some consolation in the fact that it required two larger dogs to help us recover from one small dictator. slept on the beds. Passed away: 09/05/06 page18 . We. We should have known when your obedience teacher looked us in the eye and said “You’d better get a handle on him or you are in for trouble. were not convinced that she was her mother’s filly nor were the many guests who came to visit her. we were enamoured. She concerned us due to her tiny stature and the fact that her legs were unable to propel her forward. are you ruling your kingdom just as well on the other side? You are loved and greatly missed Gus! Drop by and grace us with your presence sometime. disposition. With all the “oohs” and “aahs” expected in the presence of a King. missed you terribly and our two new family members needed a home.IN PASSING celebrating the lives of animal friends Kounterfeit It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of Kounterfeit. Kounterfeit’s quiet. Please forgive us for our two new dogs but Hope. She was always one to come over to greet all guests. do not go “just looking at dogs. She seemed to find fencing not to be a restraint but rather an obstacle to be literally bent to her desires. and hopped backwards around her pen at great speed.” There you were a sweet. We laughed at your royal manner as you strutted around your domain. You were not leaving without a fight and we held on to you as long as we could. from absolute delight to utter frustration. We should have known that we would not want to notice the years taking the shine off your eminence. As we each took turns holding your sleepy. She was deeply loved by many. She looked forward to coming into the barn. curious. We should have known that most people. ears and body failed you. emotion. It required great restraint on our part to not fill your bowl when you would bark your command for more food. with or without carrots. Passed away: 10/09/08 Gus Dear Gus. You showed her what you thought as you defiantly lifted your imperial leg on her pants and spent the rest of the classes observing from the perimeter. social nature was quickly apparent. labeled as a trouble maker. We should have known when we went back for a second look a few days later that we were in trouble and going down fast. We should have known that people would laugh at your bravado as you challenged anything and everything with four legs. royal body the magic spell was being cast for you to take up permanent residence in our hearts. All of this experience. squishy. tiny peanut of a dog that looked like a little deer lying placidly in the forest. we walked away pondering the possibility. creativity and discipline because a tiny peanut of a dog captured our hearts We are most grateful we shared thirteen years of life with you that we probably would not have if we had known the ride we were in for. or stature. never acting indifferent to anyone. More accurately you were sleeping in a pen at a pet store ready to pounce on any unsuspecting prey. as a filly if you sat down in her field she would come over and lie beside you waiting for you to stroke her. our lovely four year old mare. chairs or anywhere else you chose that we were raising a King. Good Bye Miss Kounterfeit. your waning ability to dictate as your eyes. red. and that is how she obtained her name. especially softies for dogs. Thankfully you held court so all of us were there to say goodbye together. When Kounterfeit was born she resembled neither her mother or father in color. and now deeply miss her. and she seemed to love in return – especially her friends Jake and Bob. were touched by her. We knew that eventually the decision would have to be made to help you from this life to the next. Just one question. so the deer image fits. We loved her. She on the other hand seemed less concerned. your loyal minion. She loved being around humans and we were never certain that she was aware that she was a horse. Her curiosity of new things caused her much difficulty with the installation of electrical fencing – often being the horse in the herd that received the jolt. You would approve of them because they would not challenge your majestic position.” that we had a force to be reckoned with. but was never quite sure what to do once inside. We should have known that you would balloon to 15 pounds because you were feeding the Big Dog that lived inside you.

is one of those people. “What lizard?” “Well.” “Thank goodness!” I said. so I gave him another one. ‘you wouldn’t believe what I found in a bucket out back. for some people there is no insignificant life. and I found a place out back to hide Leo’s food bucket and went on with my day. the man told me that I might get him to eat some maggots. and he wanted to know what the lizard’s name was. and even weeks after the whole lobby lizard incident Tammy was smiling with a quiet satisfaction. didn’t I?” she asked. and he got himself locked in the lobby of the office. you know. content that she had done her best to keep this little lizard alive until he set himself free. but he missed. It worked out just fine. Tammy. as happy for Tammy as I was for Leo. he’s gonna die.” “So. if I don’t feed him. what was his name?” I asked.” “So. “God helps them that helps themselves. Central Florida is crawling with little lime-green lizards.” she said finally and nodded. I can only hope that Tammy finds me and feeds me until I put myself back on the right path. and closed up in car doors. because the fly flew straight at that lizard. as she saw it.. “ ‘Don’t tell you’re tryin’ to feed one of those little yard lizards. I finally admitted I was. a dear friend of mine. when Tammy started telling me about the lobby lizard. She has written for newspapers. and I told him I didn’t think they would work. he has a plan for everything. talking. ‘Dummy! That was your one chance at salvation!’ But I couldn’t really blame him because he was weak. He was in there 2 or 3 days and then I looked up one day and there he was. He asked me what I was trying to feed. We were sitting outside the motel she manages late one Saturday night. you know? Even little ol’ lizards. there was this lizard. “He was all skinny and pale-looking . I laughed until I was blue in the face.” I giggled. I tried to catch him. in her thick Louisiana accent. Personally. was accomplished. and Tammy is one of those people.” she said and shrugged. but I told him it wasn’t that kinda lizard. magazines. but Leo had to eat. “Leo!” she said.by CJ Mouser here are some people in this world for whom there is no insignificant life. you know. yes! So there poor Leo was with nothing to eat again. I took ‘em in there and I laid one out right in front of Leo and he snatched it right up. slapped the lid on T the can and took it back to the lobby and turned it loose. God. even for a lizard . but if by chance I come back some day as a lizard and find myself trapped in a building. stretched out on the window sill.cjmouser. he’s gonna get it! Well. I said. Now.” She wrinkled her nose.’ He recommended iguana food. but the guy forced it out of me. I didn’t want to. Late that afternoon. he jumped for it. I didn’t know how much lizards eat so I figgered that was enough for the moment. “I told you ‘bout the lizard. Florida.’ he said. “It suited him. Visit her Web site at: http://www. sensing a story. “He found the bucket with Leo’s food?” “Yes he did. ca CJ Mouser is a freelance writer living in Bradenton. John. “But see. now. “So I went out to the dumpster and I found some and put ‘em in a little bucket.” I was laughing so hard by now I couldn’t see straight. Her mission. They’re everywhere.. what happened next?” “Well I called the bait store and I asked the man if they had any worms. and shuddered.. somewhat defensively. ‘a lizard. you see. “No. They get stepped on. and I thought. the owner came in and said.. and I thought. So.” By now I was chuckling. “Later on that day Leo decided on his own that he was fed up with indoor life and when I opened the door.” she said. run over. and is in the process of having two books published. you know? He did his best. and I said. He said they had night crawlers. so I went out back with a little trashcan and caught me a fly.com.” “What’d you do?” “Well. I don’t know about religion or reincarnation or the secret of life. After all. and he threw it away!” “Oh no!” “Oh.’ “ I gasped.” “Tammy!” “Well. “the lizard had to eat. I tried to pretend like I hadn’t named him. picturing this conversation in my mind.” Tammy said with a certainty born out of pure faith. I figured he might eat flies. he scooted right on outside. I was so happy! Leo finally had something to eat. but he was too fast. and solving all the world’s problems. page19 . Anyway.

We are also looking for Foster Families to help take care of our animals until we can place them in their forever homes. non-profit and tax-exempt private Charitable Foundation. 5 * . We are a no-kill.ca or www.com www.242.herveycats..com 403. a true. tough-love story about accepting the unacceptable.4628 PICTURE FRAMING JUST SO’S YOU NOSE! you can subscribe to creaturesall by emailing publisher@creaturesall. $  % 2 8 / $ < A life torn apart through loss.landscapes 9 . the suffering and a place of last resort for healthy cats that would otherwise be euthanized.. 1 .pinkgazelle. 403-243-1910 (780) 963-4933 www. Please visit us at www. Available through www.jpmf. permanent homes while providing programs to reduce pet over-population.ab.com Soft cover edition 308 pages Animal Rescue Foundation (ARF) rescues stray and unwanted dogs and cats from First Nations communities and rural areas and places them in loving.arf. ARF covers all costs and the rewards are immeasurable! The Hervey Foundation for Cats is a place of protection and refuge for cats.vboulayart. the old.ca to view all of our wonderful dogs and cats that are available for adoption.com page20 .

In Canada. Courtship rituals typically include bowing. the American White Pelican rises to great heights soaring slowly and gracefully. wildlife like Avery and other fascinating species will no longer be at risk. The parents incubate the eggs for up to 29 days before hatching. marshes. they can be identified by a yellow crest on their heads. In Alberta. a bird I’ll call Avery. Conservation Representative R iding the air currents. as well as aquatic invertebrates. Taking in both water and fish.ca to help conserve habitat for these important endangered species. Pelicans make their nest in a mound of dirt. their bill and pouch also change from yellow to orange. Pelicans nest on the ground on islands of reservoirs or lakes. pointing their bills towards the sky and short courtship flights. Brown Pelicans often dive underwater to catch their food. American White Pelicans could be found throughout the interior of North America but currently have settled into approximately 50 colonies found throughout Canada and another 18 colonies in the United States. though. Avery surrounds fish in shallow water. His large bill also contains a large throat sac used for food storage. are more buoyant. It is our hope that one day. pebbles. and rivers. Habitat degradation and illegal hunting of pelicans have been other common reasons for the decline in American White Pelican populations. Avery’s mate. Instead. A majestic bird. the American White Pelican is unmistakable even from far away with its white coloring and distinctive long red bill. ca The Nature Conservancy of Canada (NCC) is dedicated to conserving habitat for wildlife species like the American White Pelican. consisting of 8 different species of pelicans found globally. He will grow up to be a very large white bird with a large red beak and black patches on the underside of the wings. please do not vandalize them. strutting. he will begin looking for a mate. the ban of pesticide use. American White Pelicans are found throughout all regions where freshwater exists. American White Pelican populations declined where pesticide use has been high. page21 . Call 1-877-262-1253 or visit alberta@natureconservancy. Typically pelicans nest in the same spot annually. unless drought conditions and high predator populations deem them unsuitable. Management of pelican habitat. American White Pelicans like Avery. He feeds primarily on fish including Northern Pike and Lake Whitefish. Habitat projects to develop and maintain suitable nesting grounds. Historically. When both the males and females are ready to breed. along with other colonial nesting habitat is critical for the survival of Avery and his family. Avery then holds his bill upright to drain out the water before swallowing the food. while the other feeds. Avery is a juvenile American White Pelican that lives on a reservoir within the prairie region of Canada.SPACES and SPECIES american white pelicans by Kristie Romanow. Avery comes from a family known as the Pelicanidae. so diving is not really an option. Avery will migrate south to warm coastal waters during early Fall and arrive back in North America during Spring. If you see a nest or eggs. these toxins are still used in other countries where pelicans spend their winters. Upon pairing. before long. scooping them into his pouch. the male and female will choose and defend their small nesting area. Because pesticides and other chemicals often make their way into water supplies. Though Avery is still a juvenile. However. like other female pelicans. breeds in colonies between April and June and lays 2 to 3 eggs each year with the largest clutch size of up to 6 eggs. has helped the populations to stabilize and even increase. The latin name (Pelecanus erythrorhynchos) refers to the red bill of the American White Pelican. Currently it is illegal to shoot an American White Pelican or disturb nests or eggs at anytime in Alberta. Let me tell you about one American White Pelican in particular. such as DDT. One parent will incubate the eggs. public awareness and partnerships are critical for the survival of Avery and his family. or sticks surrounding a small hole where the eggs are laid. amphibians such as Tiger Salamanders and frogs. Remember to watch out for Avery and other colonial birds along freshwater lakes and rivers across Alberta.

Inquiries about private lessons and commissions are welcome. OTHERS ARE OUTSTANDING! creaturesall is proud to introduce Christine (Cj) Perrin marketing & communications t•403-648-1793 cjperrin@creaturesall.Placing the spirit of art in your world Susanne Lamoureux (780) 443-2462 susanne@lamorearts.net page22 . L’A MORE’ ARTS SOME FOLKS MERELY STAND OUT.com f•403-282-1899 www. Stop in and see our Happy Cats on display at Sunridge Petsmart in Calgary.com www.happycatsanctuary.com Proud Supporter of the Hervey Foundation For Cats.lamorearts.

founded Ellis Bird Farm. I So just what is it about bluebirds that has captured our imagination? Why have thousands of volunteers across North America set out tens of thousands of boxes for them? Why are there dozens of organizations across North America dedicated to the conservation of bluebirds? Firstly. are quite common in the area. check out www. who arrived a day or two later with an armload of bluebird boxes. bluebirds are shockingly bright and shockingly blue. Why not plan to start your own bluebird trail this spring? page23 . with no special training or tools required. monitoring a bluebird trail of some 350 boxes. Mr. as average citizens.nabluebirdsociety. Bluebirds are the recipients of much human care and attention because they are one of the few wildlife species that we. Over the centuries. So touched have humans been by the bluebird that the Pima First Nations people of the southern states have a legend about how the bluebird got its colour. ca If you would like to find out more about how you can get involved. with his sister. was only 13 when. bluebirds are harbingers of spring. acreages and neighbourhoods. Dozens of regional groups have been established and there is even an international organization dedicated to bluebirds.ellisbirdfarm. bluebirds nest in old woodpecker cavities. can help directly. it was breathtakingly beautiful. Complementing their azure attire is an endearing temperament.WINGIN’ IT stories from the bird farm by Myrna Pearman. We live in a part of the world dominated by bird species that tend to be a bit on the drab side. bluebirds are—as everyone discovers upon their first sighting— beautiful. Henry David Thoreau. Baumach kindly helped us set the boxes out around the pasture and our efforts were rewarded when a pair of bluebirds took up immediate residence.org. the North American Bluebird Society (NABS). one warm April afternoon.” Secondly. He was so excited about the sighting that we all piled into the old half ton and drove back out to the far pasture to see it. we begin in mid-March to scout the byways and back roads. holes in clay banks and other natural holes. In central Alberta. My childhood interest also led me to Ellis Bird Farm. right on our own farms. sharing my love of bluebirds with others. Dad made a call to our friend. That evening. Melvin Baumbach of Bentley. The bluebirds in the area responded to this generous provision of nesting sites and now. In the wild. and helping to carry on the legacy of Charlie Ellis who. and each year built and set out more boxes around our farm. Dad rushed into the house to breathlessly exclaim that he’d just seen a Mountain Bluebird. Not surprisingly. bluebird trails have become one of the most widespread grassroots conservation movements in North America. By contrast. forty years later. Establishing a bluebird trail is a activity that can be undertaken by young and old alike. I will never forget seeing that first flash of iridescent blue. they are one of the first species to arrive back from their overwintering grounds in Texas and New Mexico. they are gentle in nature and their soft warble is beautifully soothing. aptly quipped that “the bluebird carries the sky on its back. Our neighbours were soon doing the same. and word of first sightings spreads quickly throughout the community. where I have enjoyed a twenty-year career as their biologist.ab.ca or www. hoping to catch a glimpse of that first burst of blue. Which brings me to my final point. This penchant for cavities means that they will readily accept bird boxes. Winnie. The expression bluebird trail is used to describe when five or more boxes are set out along a prescribed route. A healthy competition to spot the first bluebird of the season exists among bluebirders in each province and state. dozens of songs and poems have been penned in their honour. This was the first one he’d ever seen on our small farm north-east of Rimbey. I was hooked on bluebirds. Biologist & Site Services Manager — Ellis Bird Farm Ltd. and one of the greatest naturalists of all time.

they seemed about ready to give up. exhausted and disappointed. When morning arrived we called for more information.by Sheila Wirsch A s we were leaving the Calgary Humane Society. coincidently. seeing us. they quickly made another appeal for a home for their puppy. Desperately talking to everyone they saw. hoping to find their six-week old puppy a new home. Shortly after. we noticed a young couple placing notices on every vehicle’s windshield. arranging to see the puppy that afternoon. we were looking for a companion of our own. page24 . Since. Then. Nipper was brought into our home. we listened intently to what they had to say and took their name and number and told them we’d think about it and call them the next morning.

We didn’t know whether to laugh. she would grab her ball and reposition herself to play once more.The white diamond on her chest enhanced her rich black coat while the tips of her paws and tail were lightly tinted with white. The memories of her running and burying bones f lood my mind whenever I visit her park. After stopping to catch her breath.” Their expressions of amazement showed disbelief. Her exuberance for life embraced all those who knew her and I know her spirit still runs free. Every so often during these walks. waiting for my command. I’d notice people stopping to watch Nipper run. and the cold of winter was coming fast. Nipper was a beautiful dog that loved life and she eagerly greeted each new day with renewed energy. exploring and winding through the trees while keeping close eye contact on me. my arm crying out in protest. leaving us deeply worried as we searched for her. she would bolt again in the opposite direction. as Nipper and I approached the station. she would still search for and bury any bones she found. running back and forth along the fence-line. she would carry it around and when told to drop it. we suddenly noticed a moving black form. turn again. When called back. grit and dust finding its way into my mouth and leaving me sputtering. Nipper enjoyed her runs and continued to bury bones well on into her later years. Eventually. Upon hearing “O. Walking Nipper was enjoyable. happy as a lark. We were ecstatic to find her and know she was unharmed. But she remained eager for her daily walks. and run like the wind back towards the stand of trees. It became her ritual and a vitality of life shone brightly within her. puffing like a steam engine. “no training – she trained herself. delighted at her accomplishment. Nipper loved her favorite brilliant red ball. they gradually ended as her health deteriorated. she would lope towards me one final time. she would turn swiftly at the trees. With thoughts of deep sadness we knew it was Nipper’s time. walking up to me. On our walks. they were awestruck. not moving a muscle. One day I decided to follow her. her tail wiggled loosely as she wobbled unsteadily. I stand proudly. Standing straight up. An electrical station stands at one end and a welltreed area at the other. totally focusing. After a few slower paced runs back and forth. high traffic street. Ritual complete. five minutes later. Heartbroken. she returned home with dried mud on her nose. I would try and trick her by throwing other balls of other colors. All I could answer was. One time Nipper disappeared. Running with rapid acceleration in her full out stride along the fence. We sensed something unique about her.K. Sparkling eyes explored a big new world until suddenly. A chain-link fence barricades a busy. We came to class Nipper as an environmentally friendly dog. In her own world. she dropped in her bone and quickly covered it up. while the residential side contains a kids play area. run like wildfire part way back. she searched. Nipper’s great passion for running revealed itself as her life’s ambition. their mouths hanging open as she ran. Finding a bone. Wanting to constantly play. Going into neighboring properties. disappearing into back yards. Our hearts began sinking as time passed and she was nowhere in sight. There was Nipper. watching her go. she wouldn’t listen. Always in a hurry. they’d ask how she was trained to run like that. Repeatedly I would throw that ball.” she would quickly take off with lightening speed. like me. looking for a spot to play or do mischief. flop. I could see. cry or discipline her. Run! ca page25 . until at last she’d tire and lay down. approaching 14 years of age. continuing on by. but she ignored them. she’d tire. However. she ran as a free spirit. we decided to end her pain and put her to rest. then fall sleep. Run. she would excitedly position herself into her running stance. Upon finding the perfect spot and digging a hole. as they’d shake their With the passing of time. rocks and dirt flying. She had taken herself for a run. Nipper. Nipper’s walks became shorter and. The years started to take hold as her age crept upwards. especially when we would pass through the park close to where we live. we noticed her begin to slow until eventually she was no longer able to continue her hard runs. With the passing of time. we noticed her begin to slow heads. Her soft whines expressed a pain that was becoming more than she could endure. she would absolutely refuse and head off in another direction. I was left dumfounded and exhausted from trying to keep up with her. Deciding to walk in the direction of the park.

After picking up the blankets from the sites. They teach us to live life in the present. Alberta. It brought me joy to see that this small gesture lets the animals know that they are loved and cared for. You truly are never too young to make a difference. I visited a local animal shelter and noted that each animal is given a comfort blanket or towel and a toy to call their very own. They trust us to give them a loving and safe home and in return are loyal and love us unconditionally. I count. I voluntarily cleaned stables at my friend’s farm. I created the Snuggle Buddies Project to bring a bit of comfort and a lot of love to the animals awaiting their new forever homes. towels and pet toys from the public in Calgary and area and distributes them to local animal shelters on a rotating basis. I have known since I was a young girl that I wanted to put my time and talents into making the world a better place for animals. I think that animals are such special beings. they teach us so many things. and compassion. This year was the year for me to make a difference in the lives of animals in my community. I had hamsters and fish that lived very long and pampered lives and I got to occasionally take care of my grandparents’ dogs. I cherished these times together. brochures. Many a wonderful vacation was spent playing with Taffy and Sparkle up at the river. In my younger years. Their current contest hopes to identify and reward more ‘humane heroes’ like Jessica who are working to help animals in Alberta. wash.albertaspca. I was turned away at animal shelters and veterinary clinics.YOUTH SAID IT by Jessica Zutz snuggle buddies towels in our first month! The Snuggle Buddies Project is something that every community in Alberta can participate in. I took over our basement and created a miniature veterinary clinic complete with a surgery suite. tag and bundle them all up nicely with a bow before distributing them to the animal rescue societies. and then began collecting blankets at my church. visit www. I was not able to have my own cat or dog when I was young – my father is allergic to everything with fur. I picked worms up off the sidewalk and put them on the grass. Because of this I choose to care! ca age 17 have loved animals from a very young age. I organized the first collection site at my school. The Snuggle Buddies Project was born. After a generous donation of containers by Great Western Containers I began asking local businesses to host collection sites. We were able to give RASTA a much needed gift. enjoying every good thing that comes our way. I have chosen to become a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine. They teach us patience. The first society we donated to was the Rescue and Sanctuary for Threatened Animals (RASTA) located in De Winton. If we all work together we can make a difference in the lives of every animal in every shelter in our province. The Snuggle Buddies Project is a community-based project that collects pre-loved blankets. To find out how you can nominate a Humane Hero or tell your story. We collected one hundred blankets and I Jessica's story was a past winner in the Alberta SPCA's Essay Contest. They told me I was too young to help out. I waited in anticipation of the day I could start making a difference by volunteering my time. We have received everything from blankets made just for animals to brand new cat beds. Early on I realized that each animal is their own distinct individual and should be treated with the kindness and caring we as humans treat each other.org ca page26 . Taffy and Sparkle. and business cards. The community has responded with great enthusiasm to the Snuggle Buddies Project.

gradually at first then with increasing purpose: tree buds swell. sampling emerging garden foliage and flowering bulbs. roses and lettuce (in that order). newborns are hidden in the bush. Refraining from touching the little creature we quietly crept away knowing that its mother was hidden close by. A six foot tall fence around the vegetable garden has been the most effective but five years after its installation. Much to my chagrin she has been busy passing this information on to all her offspring! As summer moves into autumn it is imperative that the fawns eat enough to ensure they grow rapidly and gain weight. New life stirs. Born scentless. This is especially true of females who are preparing to fawn. vigourous fawns. We have had good luck with sprays that are absorbed by the plants but have to change them regularly as eventually the deer become accustomed to the smell or taste. newborn fawns are more vulnerable to predation when the mothers (who have a scent) are present. For unknown reasons. Each herd also has its own hierarchy of favourite foods. Most deer will refrain from eating aromatic or fuzzy leaved plants but when food becomes scarce everything is fair game. shuddering to release itself from the remains of winter’s icy grip. Only the strongest does survive the winter to deliver guaranteeing strong. Tulips have been banished as they are considered a delicacy worth traveling great distances for. Bucks do not play any part in fawn rearing preferring to spend summers alone gaining strength for the fall rut. green shoots emerge. sprays worked well until the deer learned they washed off after a rain.THE GARDENING BUG the saga of the whitetail deer Pt2 by Elaine Rude. It’s Spring. Female fawns are also more likely than males to survive their first few weeks of life. the time when all creatures heave a collective sigh of relief knowing that the Earth will once again be warm and green. ca . the does returning briefly throughout the day to feed them. individual family groups join together spending the summer in small herds. Until able to travel. To make up for months of near starvation their appetites are huge at this time of year. Only the biggest and the strongest ones will make it to their first birthday. Deer adapt readily so a revolving arsenal of deterrents is required (the sooner deterrents are utilized in the spring the more effective they are). As well. At our place it’s raspberries. The fawn froze seeking to become one with the surrounding landscape. The majority of fawns arrive in June. the gnarled old willows on the property bear testament to the annual spring pruning they receive from ravenous deer. Once the fawns are strong enough to travel. Reports of deerproof plants should be met with skepticism. We have employed almost all of them with limited success: the motion activated sprinkler kept them at bay for a while until they discovered the water didn’t go as far as the sensor was activated. it all depends on what’s been tasted and deemed acceptable. Some years back my young son and I were following a path through the woods when we came across a lovely spotted fawn tucked under a large saskatoon bush. Each herd has its own territory and favourite foods explaining why gardeners report a mixed bag of plants being browsed. Delivery is quick and almost bloodless (an adaptive strategy to avoid alerting predators)with twins being common. our resident doe has discovered a couple of spots where she can jump it. Master Gardener he Earth awakens from its long winter’s nap. Within the hour fawns T are able to stand and nurse but do not start traveling with their mothers for a few weeks yet. Wildlife rescue centers are inundated in spring with fawns brought in by well-meaning people who think they have been abandoned. and ground squirrels venture forth to bask in the warmth of the sun’s rays. Educating the young ones begins immediately with an introduction to plants that are tasty(or not) and where these can be found. better nourished does have a higher percentage of female fawns. Whitetails regularly frequent our place in spring. In harsh winters malnourished does will reabsorb the fetus increasing their own chances of survival.

ca elaine@Luv2Garden.ca ˜@:IFJJIF8. MLA Member of the Legislative Assembly Elaine Rude MASTER GARDENER Proudly representing the Calgary communities of: Citadel • Edgemont • Hamptons Hidden Valley • Kincora • Sherwood Calgary-Foothills Constituency 403•288•4453 in the Alberta Legislature Paintbrush Garden Design and Consulting 403. Len Webber .Proud to support creaturesall in sharing enriching stories with Alberta readers.EFNš— ˜@½ekgjjqkaj”la[c]lhja[]kYj]fgf£f]_gYlaYZd]— page28 .Luv2Garden.3688 www.241. young and old! Mr.

I’m off to darkest Bolivia.HUNTING FOR JUST THE WRITE WORDS by © Très Bore I’ve eaten some critters in my time. I made a salad from its right wing. many not meant to be eaten. I’ve hunted those too. As a poet I’m filled with despair. there’s one last critter I need to bag. Whatever I stalked. would be beaten. I always made sure ‘twas they. . . it’s no longer there. ‘nuff said. and now it’s my living room chair. I learned. a boast I make somewhat coyly. My hunting career’s over. I mash ‘em up and powder them to make rare Spotted Flea Cheese. Yes. You see. A swamp in Guam was home to a newt. One last place I need to go. I found it sunning on a log. There was the Sudanese Butterfly. All I wanted was oyster stew. Alas . home of the world’s last Whoop. at least until I got there. I hopped on my quad and hunted it down. from which I made Whoop Soup. to bag some Spotted Bear Fleas. from the left. I find it tough writing from inside this Bolivian Bear. not I. The whole world has been my oyster. exceedingly rare. I’m of half a mind to call it quits. China. But before I do you know. I traveled to Northern Canada. was home to a deer. I tossed the pearls back in the sea. a bird on the edge on extinction. an ashtray doily. page29 .

You’re love gave us happiness and warmth. although you are no longer with us physically. you will always be with us spiritually. I’m sure. I believe that was only physical. of times. Following a frustrated sigh came the long walk/run to gather her up to return home. tail between legs and tongue ready to give unending kisses. Try as we did. You always made us smile and laugh. J a ur p colo water : by ng inti y fr e of Ge Murphy. I know it was never fear that caused her to bolt but rather a sense of pure freedom I’m sure she felt when surrounded by nothing more than acres of flat land and owners with a soft spot for large doe eyes.com . Murphy was a light brown and white American Staffordshire Terrier and considered the runt of the litter. to the day you had to move on.it was. with oversized paws and ears. Although the words “Murphy Come” have escaped my lips hundreds. obedience was never easy to impose on Murphy.THE FINAL WORD saying goodbye by Clayton Kyle ust prior to her 16th birthday we laid to rest our beloved family dog Murphy. they often only preceded a confused head tilt followed by a burst of speed and free will in whatever opposite direction the command had been issued. From the time you came home as a puppy. she was always there for us. had her small body been able to keep up. ears laid down. On a bad day she could always make you smile. at no point did we ever wonder where your heart was. ca page30 M ar tin gp ma rt in . You’re energy inspired us. Although she tired in her later years. Murphy was always full of energy. spinning in circles. Either that or she thought it was fun to have us chase her for hours and hours…. Your size never equaled the unconditional love you displayed to everyone you met. on her last day she would have happily romped through the snow banks with whomever would join her. if not thousands. You are my friend and will truly be missed. You’ve given us many truly great and happy moments and memories. You will never be forgotten by those who love you. She was full of love. With uncontrollable happiness she would greet us on the deck.

“Celebrating 88 years of doing business in Calgary” .