Dec 16, 2009

Deer Killing Season in Little Canada

Tonight, our city council took on what must be the most menial task ever accomplished by a city council in times of economic depression. By a 3:1 vote (Rick Montour was the dissenting vote), the Little Canada City Council decided to allow hunting in the city limits because a couple of residents complained that they were being terrorized by killer deer or some such equally inconsequential rational. At the council meeting, an equal or great number of citizens disagreed with that decision. Obviously, three minds were made up before they heard public opinion.

This is, of course, the goose game all over again. Against the wishes of the majority of citizens, the city goes off half-cocked on a non-issue. You have to wonder why this kind of thing gets more than a few minutes of consideration. “Frivolous” is, apparently, a word that is not in the councils’ vocabulary.

The city has an overstock of empty business buildings, some of which are new construction and were subsidized by taxpayers. The state is hemorrhaging money and cutting back on Local Government Aid (LGA) payments which will likely result in increased property taxes. Some of us have had the value of our property decimated by actions and inaction by our city government (which was the original reason for this website). I doubt that any Little Canada resident feels well-supported by what the city does with tax money. And the city council spends time worrying about excess deer? Talk about fiddling while Rome burns. It will be interesting to see the council minutes to learn how they justify this waste of public time and resources.

One of the great advantages of living in a rare suburb like Little Canada is that is has the feel of living in the country while having the convenience of being very near an urban center. If the city government can easily be panicked into foolish and unnecessary action every time one or two residents complain about scary wildlife on their property, a good bit of that advantage is lost. This would go under the heading of "bad publicity" for our little village.

Dec 12, 2009

Wild Turkeys in the Trees

I admit I'm totally unfamiliar with northern wild turkeys. I've been around the southwest variety most of my life, but apparently northern turkeys are a lot more capable bird than the southern breed. On an October morning, we had almost a dozen wild turkeys roosting in our trees. I don't mean on low branches. I mean they were perched near the top of our tallest cottonwoods and maple trees, at least 30' feet from the ground. I didn't even know turkeys could fly, let alone fly so high.

A Shadow of Itself

Late this fall, our pitiful, abused little lake recovered a little of its former self. The water was calm. The light was perfect. The lillies had gone dormant for the season. For some reason, the water was the color of the St. Croix, that tea-mix that allows enough light to see into the water but, hopefully, not enough light to sustain those invasive plants. We can only hope winter doesn't spoil whatever it is that is creating this mix of plant material.

I'm sure for Minnesotans a tiny "lake" like this seems immaterial; so small that it isn't worth a moment's consideration. After all, we have Lake Gervais just across the lake in the rich part of town, why bother with a piddling pond that has been misused by MNDOT and ignored by the DNR? A few thousand years of migratory patterns have not been revised by human interference. All sorts of bird-life visits this lake, with some species spending a substantial portion of their year on our lake. As these pictures demonstrate, even a tiny lake has value for both recreation and improving the quality of life for lakeshore residents. We boat our little lake, we barbeque and have campfires on the lake shore, we look out our backyard windows at the lake views, and we take care of it. If only our city and state government did their share or, at least, did no damage to our natural resource we wouldn't have to fight for its existence.

We canoed the lake late one October evening and took these pictures of a practically perfect sundown.