Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Online Research for My Novel Was Fun This Morning

Just a quick entry today.

I was doing research on Eastern Coyotes in the Cape Cod region this morning and came across a great online resource by Dr. Jonathan Way. Besides liking how he spelled his name (which is how I spell a character of mine's name) his site was filled with photos of coyotes in their "natural" habitat. I became puzzled and frustrated, however, when I discovered his site hadn't been updated in over a year. Then I discovered the reason. According to this entry in July 2005, hunters were using his research information to stake out his trap sites so they could bag coyotes. Unbelievable.

I've known a few people who look forward to deer hunting season because they stock up on meat for their family, but people don't eat coyotes. So killing one would be just for the thrill of it. Frankly, I don't see the challenge. Anybody who wants to wait by a humane trap to shoot an approaching animal has something wrong with him.

Also of interest was the news that fisher cats were back in Cape Cod. Fisher cats are a member of the weasel family. They're a LOT larger than cats, too. Odd name. This is a recent development. I don't even recall them being mentioned while I lived there during the 1980's.

Of particular note is that any critter reintroducing itself to Cape Cod needs to swim across the canal, something I wouldn't want to try unless I was highly motivated. Looking at the opposite shore in my mind I don't envision anything appetizing there, so something else must have driven coyote and fisher cats to cross all that cold water. Perhaps they were on vacation? All in all, however, this was a fruitful morning. I just need information on bobcats and ravens and the wildlife research for my novel will be complete...