Pamela Carey's Blog

July 28, 2020

From the Sidelines

July 28, 2020


     For the last four months, life has been slipping in and out of focus. The joy stick that I control is no longer reliable. But that’s OK. I’ve never really been in charge, anyway.
     Charley and I were in Florida at our condo in March when the pandemic hit. Life as we knew it shut down: beaches had yellow tape at the entrances and sheriff’s helicopters flew overhead, looking for violators.


     Tennis courts and golf courses were off-limits. All commercial establishments closed, except for take-out dining. I ordered 100 masks on the internet so we could venture out one day a week, clad in gloves, to pick up our groceries.  Placing the grocery bags outside the front door when we returned, we carried the items to the kitchen fully clad and bathed each item in a disinfecting cloth.  Isolating and remaining six feet from anyone we encountered, we brooded feverishly over news videos, press conferences, and data graphs. Our neighbors invited us to gather in the evening in masks outside (three feet apart) for cocktails and hors d’oeuvres, supplied for personal use. Instead, we waved and began three-mile walks. When we returned, we retreated to seats above the ocean, where the rhythmic pounding of waves and whosh of dive-bombing pelicans lulled us into a hypnosis.


     We counted thirty-five tractor-size treads on the beach in front of us, left by Leatherback turtles during their nighttime deposit of eggs. Fellowship came on the internet or over the phone.



     I need routine. I like to be in control. My new routine consisted of letting go: sleeping later; foregoing my usual Kashi twigs and blueberries to splurge on a “Big Breakfast” with pancakes at the McDonald’s drive-thru twice a week; performing exercises on the dining room floor instead of rushing to the tennis courts or the fitness center; watching Governor Cuomo’s press conferences, whenever they came on; reading in a lounge chair; preparing dinner at 4:30 p.m.; walking three miles at 6:00, when the temperature dropped to 80 degrees; rediscovering old favorites on television like “Out of Africa” and “City Slickers,” or new ones like “Ray” and “Million Dollar Baby.”
     Shortly after we started our isolation in March, I developed a scratchy throat. I attributed it to the allergy season in Florida. The glands beneath my jaws popped like miniature flower bulbs, and my sinuses sounded like pipes in need of Draino. There was no way I could write anything new, although I had endless days to write. I was totally uninspired and lethargic. “We’re in this together,” we kept hearing on television. Yet we felt like aliens. I began sleeping in the guest room, hoping Charley wouldn’t catch whatever I’d developed. My imagination ran wild. I Googled symptoms on the internet. I discovered others were experiencing similar problems, a sign of the times.  Virtually I had an appointment with our primary care doctor, although I had no temperature. He called a prescription to the pharmacy for my sinuses, which we picked up at the drive-through. I stayed in the guest room till early May. Neither of us had developed antibodies, meaning neither of us had contracted the virus.
     We headed north to our home in Massachusetts in mid-June, just before the pandemic began to spike in Florida, a result of Memorial Day festivities. We spent two nights on the road at Hampton Inns I’d contacted. They assured me of their cleansing policies following each guest’s departure and the availability of baggie-only breakfasts. In South Carolina restaurants had reopened inside, but we were the only ones for dinner in a Ruby Tuesday. Our waitress wore no mask and seated a group of young people without masks directly behind us. We departed as quickly as possible. In Virginia, where everyone wore masks, we ate outdoors.

     The kaleidoscope of tragedies began to spin out of control. Deaths resulting from the Corona Virus, racist inhumanity, violent protests, unemployment and business failures, lies from leaders we were supposed to trust, and our brother-in-law’s struggle with cancer, created an unbearable edginess while we isolated at our home in Massachusetts. In Florida we had taken stock and resolved to eliminate the fluff, creating a tight knot of two. We’d resolved to try to control only what we could change and refocus on our relationships, our attitudes, our healthy habits, and everything that inspired us. Inevitably, the outside world crept back in.
     Thankfully, we remained healthy, as did our sons and their families. We had income in retirement and places to call "home." Restaurants began to reopen outdoors in Massachusetts. Masks were mandatory to enter any commercial establishment, which made us feel safer.


     In late July, after two members of our local community tested positive, the golf course, tennis courts, and all restaurant facilities were immediately closed at the club next door.


     Meanwhile, we watched wild turkeys cross the yard, a wren nest in the wreath on our front door, deer eat my hosta plants, and

an osprey adolescent venture from the nest its parents had remodeled last year. Roses overwhelmed our hillside in the heat, mimicking the hair that grew down over my ears. In a rear-view mirror I noticed the blond highlights on the back of my head had transformed into a cap of gray. I let go of lip liner and lipsticks. What was the point, under a mask? Simpler things became easier. I became gentler on myself and more forgiving, while around me I heard, "What a mess! What a mess!"


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Published on July 28, 2020 14:21

July 10, 2020

A Bus Trip in the Canadian Rockies



Our bus departed Whistler to go to Sun Peaks in the Canadian Rockies. After a couple of hours travelling, the bus was positioned vertically up the side of the mountain on a two-lane road when it pulled partly off onto a shoulder. All of us passengers assumed it was for a photo-op, so we stood to take photos. We looked all around but could only see blue sky ahead of us and blue sky below us. Then we noticed our tour guide was crossing the road with his cell phone at his ear.
We watched as he walked down the road, up the road, crossed the street to our side, and then climbed the mountain.  At that point we decided he probably wanted some privacy to squat, but that didn’t make sense because there was a toilet in the bus. Meanwhile, the driver crossed the street, walked down the road, walked up the road, crossed the street back to our side, and then climbed the mountain. Maybe they were having a rendez-vous?
Finally, our guide returned. “The bus has stopped by itself!” he informed us. “It won’t restart!” There were shouts from some of the older men and hysterics from their spouses. Needless to say, we weren’t near any town and our guide didn’t know how long we’d have to wait. Unfortunately, the bus had given out in a spot that partly obstructed one lane around a curve.
Some of the younger passengers were Australian, and their attitude was, “S__t happens.” A few of them disembarked and found a tiny clearing to play “pitch penny.” One man found a soft limb (a “switch”) and began to weed-whack the area for the game.  Another man put on his earphones and entertained us dancing up the aisle.
The rest of us laughed (at the beginning), talked, and read.
Since there was a hillside path, the men could mountain-climb when they needed to pee.  Not so for the women!
With my luck, I was seated in the last row on the aisle in front of the bathroom.  The driver informed us that he couldn’t start the engine, so we couldn’t flush.  But some of the females began to get desperate.  The door knob to the toilet wouldn’t turn properly and kept getting stuck, so I used a piece of paper towel to keep the knob from turning and told the women I’d guard the door.  Since there was no power from the engine, I used my cell phone flashlight to usher them in and show them where the necessities were located, although there was no flushing, of course. After a bit, it began to get “ripe” in the bus, especially for those of us seated near the toilet.
“Could you put on the emergency lights?” I asked the driver, hoping that would provide enough power to flush. 
“I don’t really want to use up whatever power’s left,” he said. We ended up compromising with every third woman flushing. My job was to open the door, usher the ladies in with my flashlight, and designate every third person for a flush.
It was an interesting way to meet women! I was offered tips and written recommendations, should I wish to pursue this as a new career.
.........................by Eileen Watson
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Published on July 10, 2020 15:28

June 19, 2020

A Poet Laureate's Thoughts

Although Danusha Lameris, poet laureate of Santa Cruz County, California, posted these thoughts over eight months ago, they seem fitting today.  This was printed in the NY Times Magazine section on 9-22-19.


                           Small Kindnesses

I've been thinking about the way, when you walk
down a crowded aisle, people pull in their legs
to let you by. Or how strangers still say "bless you"
when someone sneezes, a leftover
from the Bubonic plague. "Don't die," we are saying,
And sometimes, when you spill lemons
from your grocery bag, someone else will help you
pick them up. Mostly, we don't want to harm each other.
We want to be handed our cup of coffee hot,
and to say thank you to the person handing it. To smile
at them and for them to smile back. For the waitress
to call us honey when she sets down the bowl of clam chowder
and for the driver in the red pick-up truck to let us pass.
We have so little of each other, now. So far
from tribe and fire. Only these brief moments of exchange.
What if they are the true dwelling of the holy, these
fleeting temples we make together when we say, "Here,
have my seat," "Go ahead - you first," "I like your hat."

Cuba, 2018


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Published on June 19, 2020 09:10

June 3, 2020

And the Pastor Drove Away...


     For their trip to Yellowstone National Park, Pastor Gail and husband Ben rented a Winnebago. They picked it up at their local CarMax in Indiana and took off with Gail behind the wheel, stopping along the way to visit friends and relatives. Inside the magnificent surroundings of the national park, they swam, hiked, and sat by campfires for four days and nights, listening to coyotes howl and watching eagles skim the surface of Yellowstone Lake. When their camping reservation ended, they decided to get an early start the next morning. Around 6 a.m. they roused themselves and Gail again took the wheel. Ben would get his turn after about three hours.

     “We’d better stop at the general store on Highway 20 before we leave the Park,” Gail said. “We can shower in there at the truck stop. No telling when we’ll find another full-service place.” No answer from Ben in the rear of the camper. Gail’s husband was not a talker and was clearly not in charge.     When the camper reached the truck stop, Gail turned off the engine and grabbed her back pack with overnight necessities: face cloth, towel, deodorant, soap, toothbrush and paste.  She looked in the rear view mirror to run fingers through her cropped gray hair, pushing a cowlick down with wet fingers while Ben shuffled in his slippers and pajamas to the “cab.” A towel draped over one of his shoulders and a toiletry bag dangled from one hand. Together the two walked into the facility, Gail turning toward the ladies’ lockers and Ben turning in the opposite direction.     Gail was quick in the shower and returned to the camper. She put away the bread, milk, peanut butter and jelly, apples, and granola bars she’d purchased in the truck stop store, hung her wet towel over the back of the passenger seat, and glanced toward the back to look for Ben. His red and black checked sleeping bag followed the curve of his body and the girth of his belly. “He must have crawled in and gone back to sleep,” Gail thought.     She started the engine and checked the rear-view mirror. It took a while before she could enter the stream of traffic heading out of the park. After she hit the highway, she pushed the pedal to the medal till she saw “65,” turned on a talk show with the volume on low, and sank into her captain’s seat with its molded velour back rest to sip her burning black decaf.     Two hours went by without a peep from the sleeping bag. “I’m going to stop to check on him,” she thought. “I’ve got to use the facilities anyway, after that mug of coffee.”     Gail pulled into a rest area and went to the rear of the camper. She peeled a corner of the sleeping bag back, but all she saw was a pillow. She peeled more sleeping bag back and saw only blankets. Ben was nowhere in the camper.     “Dang it!” Pastor Gail spewed. “Dang it, dang it, dang it!” Pastors didn’t swear, but Gail was sorely tempted.  “He must still have been in the truck stop when I came out. Now what do I do? It’s another two hours back.”     She had no choice. She turned around, muttering, “The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want,” and other Biblical verses for two hours so the Lord wouldn’t hear any blasphemies. When she re-entered the full-service facility, she spotted Ben’s royal blue slippers on the foot rest under the counter before she recognized the back of him. His pajamas had been a gift from the twin grandsons at Christmas.     When she stood next to him, Ben was enjoying his last bite of apple pie. “Glad you came back for me!” he said. “Some guy left me his newspaper. Hope you have money for my breakfast and lunch.”      Gail paid up.




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Scenes from Yellowstone National Park


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Published on June 03, 2020 17:15

May 12, 2020

A Belated Mother's Day Tribute to My Mom Evelyn (1915-2006)


Evelyn at age 25, 1940

Because you carried me home from kindergarten in a blizzard,I learned trust.
Evelyn and Pam, 1943
Because you volunteered as Brownie leader and supplied store-boughts for meetings,I saw dependability.

Because you donated a nickel as my neighborhood newspaper’s first customer,I felt pride.
Because you designed campaign posters for my student government election,I witnessed creativity.
Because you quizzed me before tests in school,I acquired readiness.
Because you welcomed girlfriend sleep-overs in the living room and teenage “cider” parties on the lawn,I developed self-confidence.
Because you typed my compositions till midnight and went to work in the morning,I gained self-discipline. Pam and Evelyn at grandson Todd's wedding, 2000
Because you organized details of my wedding so I could finish my college degree,I found gratitude.

Because you provided a home for your ailing parents,I saw devotion.
Because you offered me shelter while Charley went to war in a place we’d never heard of,I tasted fidelity.
Because you baked your grandsons lop-sided birthday cakes and never refused to babysit,I knew unconditional love.
Because you and Dad said “I love you” each night before you slept,I heard eternity. Pam's Mom and Dad, 1995
Happy Mother’s Day, Mom, from all of us who remember.




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Published on May 12, 2020 15:11

May 1, 2020

The Sea Turtles Return!

Amid the mind-boggling pandemic of the Corona Virus (death total in the U.S. at 61,000 on April 30, '20), we welcome a small sign of life as we knew it. With public beaches in Palm Beach County, Florida, still closed and without threat from humans or dogs, nature has provided such a glimpse beneath our windows.
Deserted beach in Delray Beach, Florida, with stakes where turtles have nested
On our three-mile stretch of beach, thousands of female sea turtles return at night to lay their eggs between March 1st and October 31st. In 2017, there were 1077 nests, the highest number ever recorded in our area. It is estimated nearly ninety percent of all sea turtle nesting in the U.S. occurs right here (www.sunny.org/beaches/sea-turtles). This year the turtle stakes have already begun to appear, and experts expect a bumper crop.

We have four species that return to our area: loggerhead, leatherback, green, and hawksbill. Since artificial lighting discourages the females from nesting on the beach, there is an ordinance in Florida (and fine for offenses) that all outside lights must be turned off or inward during nesting season.

The females' tracks are as big as a tractor's tire marks. They dig holes in the sand, lay around one hundred golf-ball size eggs, cover the hole with sand, and spread sand over a large area to disguise the hole. Then they re-enter the water. Although I have seen the track marks in the sand, I have never witnessed the nocturnal nesting.

Incubation will last 45-55 days. The hatchlings use reflections from the moon to find their way down to the water at night. Only one out of a thousand will survive the predators and the tides.
Wheelchair for sick turtles, Juno Beach Turtle Rehab Center, Florida
Sick turtle getting an IV, Juno Beach Turtle Rehab Center, Fl.A New York Times article by Karen Weintraub (April 17, 2018, pg. D2) reported findings that sea turtles use the earth's magnetic fields to navigate back to within 40-50 miles of where they were born. Each beach has a distinctive magnetic signature, which the turtles find through something called "geomagnetic imprinting." In a study of loggerheads at the U. of North Carolina, Dr. Kenneth Lohmann and J. Roger Brothers determined there was "more genetic similarity among turtles that nest on beaches with similar magnetic signatures than among turtles that nest on beaches physically close to each other."

In our area of beach, a non-profit organization called Sea Turtle Adventures provides daily monitoring of the nests on a three-mile stretch. They stake, relocate nests as needed, and excavate them after hatching. The group also provides documentation and reporting of predation events, offensive artificial lighting during nesting season, and obstructed nesting attempts. It co-ordinates efforts to document and transport dead or injured sea turtles to a rehab facility (such as the Juno Beach Center), and provides annual reports to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission.

The mounds and orange stakes couldn't be more welcome this year!
May, 2018

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Published on May 01, 2020 10:37

April 18, 2020

Another Worry During the Corona Virus: Caregiving from Afar

"It's okay if the greatest thing we do this year is get through it."  (Quote meme, April, 2020)


Below is a timely guest post from Claire Wentz's website, www.caringfromafar.com, reprinted with permission.

Online Services and Tech to Save Long-Distance Caregivers Time, Money, and Stress
Care from afar is something many of us never thought we would have to     do. But, given the current situation, it may not be safe to physically interact with our sick or aging loved ones. Thankfully, there are some ways you can use the latest tech to make your life easier and your loved one’s life more comfortable, all while practicing social distancing protocols.
Save on Online Orders
Long-distance caregivers should check out this Amazon shopping guide from Rakuten for advice on saving with online orders from sites like Amazon. From utilizing Amazon’s Bargain Bin finds to saving with Amazon Outlet to accessing the latest Amazon promo codes, there are endless ways to trim costs when you ship new tech or household essentials to your senior loved one’s home. Plus, you can combine those savvy saving moves with cashback offers from Rakuten for even more savings.
Have Household Essentials and Groceries Delivered
4 Generations in Pam's family, 2005
Another way you can keep your loved one healthy and happy from afar is by using online grocery delivery services from stores like Costco. Costco currently offers delivery to many major metropolitan areas, and you can have everything from paper towels to socks to fresh foods delivered to your senior’s home. Costco even offers same-day delivery for orders of $35 or more, which can come in handy when your loved one needs groceries for meals ASAP.
Research and Compare Online Meal Delivery Services
In addition to grocery delivery services for senior loved ones, you can also check into meal delivery options. Many meal delivery services offer special menus for older adults, but at the very least, they can deliver healthy options so your senior loved one doesn’t have to leave their home. You can use introductory offers to save money on subscriptions but compare services to find one that fits your budget.
Invest in Technology to Enhance Overall Health
Amazon’s Echo device can prevent isolation, but there are other tech tools you can use to protect and provide comfort for your loved one. Fitness trackers can detect falls and encourage your loved one to stay active, while monitoring systems can provide caregivers with peace of mind. You can even use the Amazon shopping tips above to score these tech tools for less.
Being a long-distance caregiver can be stressful for you and your family’s budget. With the tech tools and online services above, you can reduce some of that stress and ensure your loved one feels safe and protected.
By Claire Wentz, Creator of Caringfromafar.com





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Published on April 18, 2020 16:32

April 7, 2020

Covid 19 Snippets, April 7, 2020

Dear Readers,
Here are some ramblings to let you know I'm sharing many of the same thoughts and feelings you are in these times of uncertainty. Please be well!

     Dysphoria: a state of anxiety, restlessness...

     Isolation Whiplash: Watching television to see death tolls rise from 6,000 to 8,000 to 10,000...

     Cabin Fever: A medical condition of hopelessness, anxiety, irritability, listlessness, food cravings, frequent napping, lethargy, depression, resulting from long confinement or isolation indoors...

     Yes, yes, and yes to the all of the above! Still, we get up and make the bed; get dressed; adhere to a somewhat "altered" schedule (sleeping in, breakfast, emails, bills, electronic conversations, take-out lunch, writing/chores to put off writing/alone time, 2 1/2-mile walk, cooking, movie, reading); set daily goals ("maybe I'll sort through the linen closet today"); and attempt to make our brains work. In my head I hear the refrain, "Sure, why not?" as in, "Sure, why not sleep another hour," "Sure, why not skip exercising today," "Sure, why not have another piece of chocolate?" We are in for a long siege.

     But I can't give in. There's too much to lose. Thankfully, I have Charley, my husband of almost-55 years, to share the isolation with me; we have our health; we have food every day; we have a beautiful environment where we can go outside together for a walk. We discuss but cannot grasp the enormity of the loss that is going on around us in this country. We worry about our loved ones.

     A friend from Massachusetts who organizes "Moon Watch" parties emailed that tonight (TUESDAY, APRIL 7, 2020) there will be a CORONA moon rising around 7:00 p.m. in the eastern part of the U.S. How fitting that it will be pink (and very large)! She sent moon updates as well as a few of her routines, which include planting seeds, walking, feeding the birds, knitting, listening to music, watching cooking shows she never had time for, and baking bread to give to "special people."

     She sent an SOS out for dark chocolate with almonds. Woodchucks have appeared in the yard and she fears for her plantings. The cleaning lady is now working from home but sent instructions! Our friend wants everyone to know she is not hoarding toilet paper.

     The Italian class Charley and I were taking was cancelled, as was our trip, and we don't feel like practicing our Italian conversations. "Why don't we start a jigsaw puzzle?" I ask him.
     "I'm working on my crossword puzzle."
     "What would you like to do?"
     "Be left alone," he tells me.

     "Would you be able to glue the cover back on the remote?" he asks.
     "Sure, no problem."
     "I'll leave it where you sit."
     "I'm sitting here, watching television. Why don't you leave it in the kitchen, where the glue is?"
     "Right where you sit. That's what I said."

Keep looking up (at the moon). Yours in Corona times, Pam
   














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Published on April 07, 2020 16:08

April 2, 2020

Another Dog-Sitting Adventure

John was in his mid-eighties and spending a lot of time alone while Ginny was overseeing house repairs, yard-work, and finances. John's children from his first marriage worried their dad was spending too much time on the La-Z-Boy and suggested John and Ginny get a dog.

"Why don't you do a test run with our Oliver?" neighbor Barbara suggested. "We're going away and he would certainly enjoy having company. You've met him at our house, but I'll be happy to bring him over so you can reacquaint yourselves. He's already housebroken."


Barbara's dog was a four-month-old male Airedale Terrier with floppy ears, sad eyes, and insatiable curiosity. Ginny's recollection of Oliver when she'd stopped at their house was a demolition derby masquerading as a brown and black irresistible smarty-pants. Barbara brought him on a leash to Ginny's back yard to say "Hello."

"If you decide to dog-sit for us, you should keep him on the leash," Barbara advised. "Airedales were bred to hunt, so he'll take off after squirrels or birds or anything that moves." While Barbara was explaining this, Oliver had dug a hole in Barbara's impatiens about six inches deep. "And they love to dig...forgot to mention that. No, Oliver!" she said, yanking the dog's leash away from the flower bed  and onto the grass. "Sorry for the hole. Just keep him on the street when you walk. We should only be gone four days."

Ginny bent down to pet Oliver, who jumped up to meet her, covering the shoulders of her tee with dirt.  Barbara got him into a sitting position by tightening the collar and commanding, "Sit, Oliver!" Ginny shook the muddy paw, and was rewarded by a licking tongue on her face.

"He's got a nice personality, doesn't he? OK. Let me know what time you're leaving Sunday. I'm going inside to wash up. Please bring everything he'll need. Bye, Oliver!" Ginny detoured to the garage for a shovel to fill in the hole. "Those kids of John's better keep their mouths shut after this. I just hope it works out," Ginny said to herself.


On Sunday Barbara arrived with stuffed toys, a comfortable bed, a leash, and Oliver's menu, which consisted of designer dog food mixed with warm chicken broth for dinner (Barbara provided both). The breakfast menu was a special order: shredded chicken breast and cubed sweet potato (provided by Ginny, after John hit the supermarket).

Barbara also  provided a "reminder" list for Ginny:

     - Oliver sleeps in our bed at night.
     - You will need to remove any medications from end tables and night stands.
       Oliver is tall when he stands, and very curious.
     - Oliver is house-broken but will need a walk twice a day and before bed.

The first night Oliver had the run of the house, sleeping on the sofa and sharpening his little claws on the soft leather. That led Ginny to write her own "reminder" list for Barbara, when Barbara appeared to pick Oliver up AT 10 P.M. ON THE SEVENTH day:

     - Oliver did not sleep in our bed.
     - Oliver did not ingest John's meds, which stayed on his nightstand
       with our bedroom door closed.
     - Housebroken?? Not!! Even with walks (?) four times/day,
       he peed on the Oriental carpet in the living room.
     - John didn't have the strength to walk Oliver, so I tried,
       but on the leash Oliver refused to go in the direction I wanted.
       I ended up carrying him in and out of the house to the weed                   
       patch to do his "duty" with leash attached to my waist.
       My back will never be the same.
     - Interior doors will have to be refinished.
     - We will have to replace John's hearing aids,
       since Oliver mistook them for his bites of chicken!

Ginny and John did not get a dog and have not spoken to Barbara and her husband in two years.



   

   
     
     


   













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Published on April 02, 2020 11:02

March 2, 2020

Something Keeps Falling On My Head



...No, it's not raindrops!

In south Florida, if the temperature gets below forty degrees for four consecutive days, coldblooded green iguanas that have invaded the state go into dormancy. They begin to fall from the trees and rooftops, where they often perch. However, they are not dead - simply stunned - and may try to defend themselves when warmed.

The mild winter of 2019 and record-breaking heat that summer brought infestations that caused the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission to declare open season on the exotic reptiles. "Iguanas can be killed year-round on 22 public lands in south Florida without a permit," reported the Washington Post ("Iguanas Spread in Florida as Climate Warms: 'They're a Menace,'" Lori Rozsa, July 2, 2019).

Iguanas can cause problems such as erosion degradation of water control structures like canal banks, sea walls, and building foundations. They can destroy carefully cultivated ornamental plants, including endangered plants, leave messy brown piles of droppings on decks and patios, and can carry salmonella.


Native to Central America and parts of South American, the creatures are a food source on some islands in the eastern Caribbean, where they're dubbed, "chicken of the trees."

Green iguanas can grow up to five feet long and weigh up to seventeen pounds. They live ten years or more and the females can lay six dozen eggs at a time. They dig tunnels up to eighty feet and have no natural predators in south Florida. "They swim, they climb, they dig," an owner of Redline Iguana Removal Company, said.

Like Ghost-Busters, iguana removal businesses have sprung up and are thriving in south Florida.  It costs $50 to trap one, or a flat rate for a multi-iguana problem, which seems to be the dominant situation.

Although iguanas are herbivorous (plant-eating), traps are baited with mango and melon, their favorite foods.

When caught, the creatures are killed and cremated. "Their numbers are increasing and they're getting bigger," Jose Gonzalez, trapper for the Iguana Police Co., declared. "They're running out of space here, but the waterways in south Florida are perfect vehicles to move up and down the coast."

So, if a dormant iguana falls on your head during a cold snap in Florida, DO NOT put him in your car to take him home for your pet. He may awaken when the heat turns on and become downright nasty!










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Published on March 02, 2020 13:10