If You Find That Rock in Your Yard, Don’t Touch It At All
You’re playing fetch with your doggie when all of a sudden you see something falling down from the sky. It’s glowing and has a large tail behind it. It’s speeding down at an alarming rate, getting ever closer.
You try to grab your pooch to take it inside, but it goes stubborn, barking and growling. But then you look up and notice the shining UFO becoming more like a ball, and it looks like it’s heading towards you! You run around your backyard trying to catch your hound, but this time it thinks you’re playing with it and runs away from you.
You improvise and chase it to go inside the house. And great timing too: the object in the sky flashes, so brightly you can’t even look at it, and then boom! It’s like a small piece of the sun just crashed right behind your house. You leap behind a couch and try to take a look at what happened. Your neighbors knock on your door to see if you’re all right. Once you open to them, they all flood in with their cameras.
You collect yourself and head to the backyard where everyone is gathered round. You make your way to the object, and you can already feel the warmth it gives off. It looks like a regular fist-sized rock lying in a hole in the ground. You observe it from all corners and try to get the best angles. You once read that you shouldn’t pick up a meteorite if it ever lands in your backyard.
You can’t find your gloves, but instead you cut off some fresh aluminum foil to grab hold of the rock. You head back outside and see someone already touching it and taking selfies! You immediately rush to the scene. You take the rock from the onlookers and place it in a zip lock bag to protect it from humidity or anything in the atmosphere that could potentially damage it. It’s still wrapped in the foil too. A large meteorite would be too hot to touch if it fell from the sky, but something about that size would cool down before hitting the ground.
By grabbing it with your bare hands, you may contaminate the meteorite with skin oils and microbes that could harm its surface. Anything that falls from space isn’t meant to be played with like a toy. So, you take it away and all the neighbors disperse. Sorry everyone, but party’s over. You call the Space Agency, and they rush over to collect the sample from you.
A few days later, a severe storm comes to your neighborhood, and you see a billboard on the other side of the street falling down from the wind. And then, all the lights go off. Aw, great! When the raging is over, you grab your toolbox and go outside to fix the electrical works. What a way to spend your Sunday.
You make your way to the shed, but a large puddle of water on your grassy lawn is in your way. No big deal, you just go around it. But a little voice inside your head tells you to stop and deal with that. Oh, come on! You put the tools down and get in some proper gear to clean up that puddle. Though it may sound kinda cool to have a mini lake in your backyard, you’re essentially creating a breeding ground for mosquitos and other pests to thrive.
You wouldn’t want a swarm of those buzzing blood-drinkers keeping you up all night and leave you itching every day. Also, having a pet around unsupervised could be hazardous as it may take a lap from the contaminated water. And what’s even worse is that this puddle is right next to the electrical chamber, which is a recipe for disaster. So after a long day, you manage to dry up the stagnant water and fix up your lawn as well. You fix the electricity issue too and are able to enjoy the rest of the day with your dog.
You’re enjoying some delicious burgers in your backyard. You take a few bites and reach out to munch on some fries, but you grab onto something that doesn’t feel too French Fry-y. You take a look and see a full-grown wasp crawling around your lunch.
You get up and go into a full freak out mode tossing your burger away and running inside your house. You shut the door and grab onto your dog. Yeah, you may have overreacted just a tad bit. But anyway, you’re looking at your freshly grilled patties laid out on the table and see another wasp join the first. And then another. And another.
You step back outside and try to find where they’re coming from. You glance about suspiciously. And as you walk around you notice a wasp flying back and forth from the grill to an area by the roof. One goes back to the roof, and 2 other wasps come out. Yup, there’s definitely a wasp nest over there. You grab a ladder from the shed and climb up to see a small hole in your roof where the wasps created a nest.
And it’s a good thing they made that nest outside. There have been cases where people found wasp nests inside their own homes, behind closets and cupboards in their kitchens. Your dog wanders outside and tries to get a bite off one of those patties. The wasps around seem intimidated and fly around your dog to give it a good warning. But luckily, you jump to the rescue, snatch your dog away and tuck it inside.
Wasps don’t usually sting humans unless agitated. And the difference between good ol’ honey bees and wasps is that the latter can sting multiple times. But wasps are still extremely beneficial for us because they keep insect population in check. Wasps don’t become prey as often as other creatures, which is why farmers even deploy some onto their crops.
At this point, the wasps have taken over your little grill and left you alone inside. They invite more of their friends and are even playing cool party games. You look at your dog, and it’s extremely disappointed in what happened. The best thing to do in such a situation would be to call pest control to move the nest to another location. It’s really risky to do that on your own. But at least you can do another grill out without any wasps bothering you. Watch out for those mosquitos though.
Another great afternoon in the yard playing with your dog. But this time, it seems distracted by a noise coming from behind the bushes. It runs all the way there and starts digging. You run over to check what’s going on and find cute little puppies crying and crawling about.
Amazed, you take a closer look at the puppies and notice they don’t look like ordinary dogs. They have a kinda orange-ish shade to their fur and pointy ears. Congrats, you’ve just found a little fox den in your backyard. Or rather your dog found it. These babies are hungry and could use some food.
But it’s better to wait for their mama to come and bring some goodies. It’s pretty common to see foxes around urban areas. Especially places that are built in already existing fox habitats. But you’re in total shock seeing one right behind your house.
You count 7 cubs in the litter and all of them seem pretty healthy and good. Many of them are playful and friendly. Some are shy and hide away. Animals can be really protective of their young, so best stay away for now. And don’t let your dog around them either. The mama fox might take it as a threat and that wouldn’t be something nice to see.
Foxes eat almost anything and wouldn’t think twice about rummaging in trash for scraps of food to eat. You take your dog inside, again, and try to figure out what to do. Moving some cute cubs may sound like a harmless and fun thing to do, but handling such creatures at their age could potentially harm them. Any slight pressure around certain parts of their bodies can damage them.
Not to mention ticks or fleas these babies may have. Being exposed in the outdoors leaves them vulnerable to all sorts of nasty vermin lurking around.
So, you grab your phone and call animal control to report the fox den. And once they arrive, they finally deal with this issue. Gee, what an interesting backyard you have!