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I wonder, though... if it will eat rats, will it eat eggs? Or do you have more than enough of those, also?

For some reason it makes me think of a big rat snake that lived in or near our back yard for a while. I was really happy when I first saw it, because I thought it would eat the rats (I mean, it's called a rat snake LOL). But apparently eggs are much easier prey. And then one day it ate our fake egg. But it managed to regurgitate it or pass it, because I found it several days later, much discolored. After that, I caught the snake and rehomed it with someone who didn't have chickens.

But I'm really happy to hear that your lizard is doing well! I wouldn't say no to more pictures...
 

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Discussion Starter · #525 ·
More on the monitor situation.

Our ranch manager managed to catch the monitor that was living under the floor of the chicken feed room. It had been described as having a head “as big as your hand”, and to have eaten an adult chicken. While it’s large enough to make an impression, it’s not the monster it was described to be.

we returned from an overnight trip to find the lizard tied to a post by the big outdoor kitchen. I put it in a feed sack and took it to the barn. There, I set it up in a big tub like the smaller one. It went into the water, but the tub was too small to hold it, and it escaped into the tack room.

it found a hiding place at the bottom of the pegboard. It seems to be comfortable there for today. I dangled a bit of chicken in front of it, then left it to settle in.

It climbed a bit, so I put a concrete block at the base of the pegboard for it to hide in if it chooses. Hopefully it will decide to stay around and keep the mice at bay.

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Welllll - he (or she) is -certainly - a big size😳. I would not want to get whapped by that tail👽

What’s to guarantee your new mouse hunter won’t fancy another chicken dinner🥴🥴

Edited to add:

Ok, I apologize for sticking my two cents in but I had to know about these Monitor Lizards😇

@Cordillera Cowboy I know you already know this but this link is for those who don’t: These Monitors are very intelligent. Tell him or her to “keep - away - from - the - chickens😘

 

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Discussion Starter · #527 ·
I checked on the monitors at feeding time this morning. No sign of the big one. It did not eat the bit of chicken I set out for it. It either found a really good hiding place, or it managed to climb out the window and head out to the forest. In either case, it is safer there than at the chicken coop, where our workers are likely to act on their instinctive fear of reptiles.
 

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Discussion Starter · #530 ·
We had a bit of excitement Wednesday of last week. A nearby lightning strike fried a few wires and exploded some light bulbs. All the breakers flipped, which protected our off grid solar inverter and batteries. Flipping the breakers back on restored power to our occupied dwellings. We were able to isolate the buildings with the burned wires. Mainly, our big outdoor kitchen. But that required moving our deep freezer and contents to another building.

Today and tomorrow, electricians are on site to do repairs and some improvements. We added light fixtures to the outdoor shower and toilet by our house. The ranch manager’s house is not getting sufficient electricity from the rudimentary wiring job done earlier. The lights are dim, and there is not enough juice to run a refrigerator.

That refrigerator was one thing that the manager’s wife was looking forward to. Turned out that she has never had one. We are setting some poles, and connecting a proper line to a junction box to replace the spliced line run through the trees as is the normal method around here.
 

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What do people do in such a warm climate with no refrigerator? Just not pick food until they eat it, and then eat everything they make? Or buy ice? Or put the food in a watertight container and then leave it in water?
 

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Discussion Starter · #532 · (Edited)
What do people do in such a warm climate with no refrigerator? Just not pick food until they eat it, and then eat everything they make? Or buy ice? Or put the food in a watertight container and then leave it in water?
While preparing to move here, I studied up on various food preservation methods. When we arrived, I learned that few people bother with preserving food. If the rains cooperate, there are multiple harvests of various foodstuffs.

It is common for people to leave leftovers from one meal on the table, covered only with a basket to keep the flies off until the next meal. Sometimes it is reheated, sometimes not. Foods are cooked with an incredible amount of salt, and sometimes vinegar, which retards some of the spoilage.

Folks also seem to have a resistance to the bacteria in old foods that westerners lack. Among the highlanders, there is a delicacy of meat that is intentionally hung out over a smokey fire, and not considered ready until it is somewhat rancid.

Many people subsist on tinned sardines and rice. The sardines are incredibly inexpensive by our standards, still some cannot afford them regularly.

edit: I neglected to add that dried fish is also a staple that will keep without refrigeration.
 

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Discussion Starter · #533 ·
The electricians have taken a break for the weekend. They have repaired all of the lightning damage and set the poles for running the line to the manager’s house.
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We are twixt and tween the rainy and dry seasons. We’ve had off and on rain and sunshine for a couple of days. That makes it rainbow season.

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Discussion Starter · #536 ·
Things are rather slow on the ranch lately. We had a successful harvest of ginger earlier. We spent most of last week on holiday. We were the guests of the company that installed our off grid electrical system as they treated their employees to a few days at a simple beach resort. The place was remote enough that there was no internet connection, but with electricity and good lodgings. The company reserved the entire resort, so we had the place to ourselves.

One reason it is inexpensive is that you have to provide and prepare your own food. The goodewyfe took charge of the kitchen and supervised the wives in the preparation of wonderful meals from the fresh from the boat seafood available in the local market.

Our last big meal before departing for home was a traditional feast, called kamayan in Tagalog. This is a meal laid out on banana leaves spread on a long table. The diners sit or stand along the table and partake of the food using no utensils, only the hands in a traditional manner.

The photos loaded out of order. But there’s some beach scenes, our bungalow, as well as before, during, and after the feast.

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Discussion Starter · #539 ·
We hosted about 30 high school students Saturday for a tree planting event. The daughter of a friend has become concerned about the environment and organized the event. We requested trees from the Department of Agriculture and the Department of the Environment and Natural Resources. The DA gave us so many fruit trees that we had no room for the forest trees from DENR.

We hired a crew to dig holes ahead of time. All the kids had to do was plug in the saplings and cover the roots. They made short work of nearly 500 trees.

The goodewyfe and Imelda, our primary household helper, made sandwiches for them.

The kids are anxious to do it again. We will attempt to get a quantity of native forest trees for the next round.

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