We caught the groundhog! I’m sure this is just what Randy wants to deal with tonight–relocating the groundhog. There’s so much growth going on in the area–neighborhoods, golf courses & shopping malls have taken the place of wooded areas where Randy’s taken critters in previous years.

I'd set the trap right where I'd observed him entering & exiting the barn.

I'd set the trap right where I'd observed him entering & exiting the barn.

Chattering his teeth to scare us off

Chattering his teeth to scare us off

He was less than interested in our cantaloupe peace offering.

He was less than interested in our cantaloupe peace offering.

Crossing my fingers that he'll be the only groundhog of the summer.

Crossing my fingers that he'll be the only groundhog of the summer.

For the past few weeks I’ve been trying to catch the groundhog that’s been eating things in my garden.

The groundhog (and his accomplice, Mr. Bunny). These guys are the real threats to the garden. The groundhog ate the leaves & blossom off of my giant sunflower long before it had a chance to bloom. He’s also responsible for stunting the growth of the zucchini & licking the cilantro clean of its leaves.

Ethan decided to move the trap to what he thought was a better location. He happened to pick the spot hole under the fence where many of the area critters enter & exit our property–including the skunks.

Ethan couldn't resist going out to see the skunk.

Ethan couldn’t resist going to check out the skunk.

Just as Randy is preparing to go out and release the skunk I discover that a skunk friend has come to his rescue and is trying to dig a way out. Randy didn’t want to deal with one skunk, much less two.

Suiting up. He wore clothes he didn’t mind tossing afterwards.

He thought he might need to use the BB gun to scare off the second skunk. He didn’t.

Ever-so-carefully Randy eases his way towards the skunk, shielding himself with the tarp he intends to use to cover the trap.

The skunk was alarmed enough to stand so Randy came up with a better approach. Stay. Low.

Fortunately we just happened to have a 20-foot pole laying around.

Skunk covered.

So far so good, but he’s still got to do the release.

Randy very cautiously opens the door of the trap. The skunk scurries under the fence and runs to freedom. Hooray!

Our hero removes his protective (and hot) cape. The skunk has been released. No one was sprayed. The mission was a success!

You’re next, buddy.