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Where We Left Off:
Gus and Amber discovered a new chipmunk in the area near Gnome Grove. We’re not sure if Pipi Lansbury is associated with the chipmunk mafia or not.
It appears that our volkolak friend Arthur (seen last July) may have a new colleague or friend. I was upstairs in the manor with Gus when The Cook yelled to say that a bear had walked through the yard from the road. I expected it to be gone, but she said it was probably still there. Gus and I got up and went to the observation deck. The Grumpy Old Man came from the other door and met us out there. I was extra careful to open the door quietly and step out. I brought my phone to take photos just in case, but didn’t grab the binoculars on the way out the door.
Gus sat up and watched through the railing without doing his usual Batman theater — going all the way through the railing and walking along the edge. This was his second bear sighting since I think he was there to see Arthur.
This was clearly a young creature. Not a baby cub though. Babies would be with their mother. It was solo. Since it wasn’t small enough to be with its mother, I’m estimating that it’s around 2-3 years old. But that’s in mundane black bear years. It’s possible what we have here is another volkolak.
We observed the creature at the bird feeder. Experts say you’re not supposed to keep bird feeders in the summer (except for vulnerable birds like hummingbirds) because: there should be plenty of food for them in the summer; and because of bears. If you keep a feeder close to your house like on a porch, you really should take it in every night. We never have and between the squirrels, bears, and wind, it’s impossible to tell which element is most destructive to the feeders (note image below from last year).
The cage has been battered badly already. It looks like it was a shark cage put in a group of hungry Great Whites. The cage and the mini Master Locks are wrecked.
Oliver had previously done some research on the new season of critters and cryptids. It’s good that someone can stay informed. Gus has a more “in the moment” approach to gathering evidence. According to Oliver, this youngin’ is named Arkadi. We didn’t have much else to go on.
Arkadi stood on all fours under the red maple tree. She(?) looked around the base of the tree where the squirrels and birds have a wide circle of scraps. She licked the ground a few times to get the loose seeds and nuts. Then she stood up on her hind legs and grabbed the bird feeder. She was so cute. She looked basically the height of a Great Dane only thicker, but by no means thicc.
On the video you’ll see her pulling the cage down trying to get it detached from the steel cables and carabiners holding it to the tree. I swear a cartooony glyph appeared — SPROING!! — as it bounced back to the tree trunk. It was too bad Oliver was missing this live observation opportunity. It was also surprising that Gus did not puff up with a fat tail as he does whenever a strange cat is trespassing in his yard.
Wouldn’t it be great if Arkadi found a mate and had baby cubs? We love seeing cubs! They are ridiculously silly like puppies. They love to play. If we ever spot cubs we’ll have to leave a ball out there or something. Fort Winchester doesn’t have a slide. I bet cubs would love if we had a slide. Don’t believe me? Look up “bear cubs playing” and see what doofiness you find. I also recommend “lions in boxes”.
This was a rare moment. Not only did a case file get to be opened on a new neighborhood creature, but almost all of us got to witness it and document it. Hopefully we’ll be able to build a full dossier on Arkadi and get to see her grow to a ripe old age.
Case Status: Open