The Trap Theme – Coypu and Moley

Since we have been here, we have been visited by one adult and two juvenile coypu. At one stage the “mother” had both her young in our pond. Later they, the young, visited unaccompanied and let me get within ten metres to take photographs.

Prior to that we found that our pond had a leak. Investigation suggested it was caused by a coypu burrow in “plug hole corner”. We filled this burrow with clumping clay cat-litter stuffed into compostable polyester bags. When the polyester breaks down via ester linkage hydrolysis water got into the bags causing the clay to absorb the water, expand and tightly fill the burrow. It was a neat idea of mine that worked well.

Bowie is now using the residual litter supply.

I have seen a grown up coypu this calendar year behind the greenhouse and swimming in the pond.

Once we had seen the juveniles, I checked and there is a prefectural edict saying that they need, as an invasive species, to be curtailed. We told the Mairie, and the hunters came and set traps. They caught a rare Eurasian mink which had to be released. Then one day I saw the coypu pair again. We called the hunters and they shot one of them with a shotgun. They could not see the other one. It made an appearance after they had left.

When the lotuses get going the coypu likes to uproot them and eat the roots. This causes them to spread but ruins the display. Naughty coypu!!

Last night the wife called me, she had seen what looked like a dead coypu in the pond. We went over to investigate. The pond walls are lined with a wire fence designed to stop things like coypu burrowing into the pond walls. The holes in the fence are ~10cm square.  When I lifted up the fence with a garden rake, there was indeed a dead, presumably drowned coypu stuck fast in one of the holes below the water line. It looked like it had entered the pond behind the fence and then tried to swim through the hole in the fence. It got stuck and instead of backing out of the “trap” it had put one of its front paws through the hole. So not only was its head and neck through the hole, in trying to escape by using its paw, it had made the matter worse for itself. Without the paw it might have been able to back out.

Together we lifted the fence out of the water and cut a portion of it free. It, the rodent, was very heavy ~3kg and the coypu was bigger than the juveniles. It had a very long tail. I cut it free of the wire hole and then took it for a water burial on a shovel.

When the fur is dry the animal looks bigger. So, it could have been the adult. We are on watch for coypu sign {turds}.

We shall see. The coypu made its own trap and could not back out of it.

Of late we have new mole-sign!! This mole must be trained by Karla at Moscow Central. Because there has been no mole sign for a number of weeks. This one must be a very deep mole. But now it has left two mountains {mole hills}. These now have some mole traps. Again, we wait.

If there is no new mole sign,I will check the taps early next week. If there is more mole sign, I will set more traps.

We are on the lookout for coypu turds {this language may be offensive to your reader} and mole hills…

Life is a riot out here …

Traps of Own Making – Soap Opera

The entertainment sector provides us with so-called “Soap Operas”. These pervade the societal consciousness to the extent that newspapers talk about what happens in them and provide “spoiler alerts” if there is to be a plot reveal. Soap opera “stars” can become part of our extended family. In these “operas” the protagonists get themselves into hot water, difficult situations, traps, and drama. They are like normal life but on steroids, amphetamines and in some cases hallucinogens. They are a mirror, a window on the trials and tribulations of modern mores, such as they may be.

In these the protagonists get themselves into all sorts of scrapes the extraction from which is never easy, there must be drama. Drama sells.

The common themes are sexual dalliance and sometimes coercion, deceit, manipulation, bullying, fraud, criminality, debts, revenge, one upmanship, lies, jealousy, money, resentment, babies, death, cancer, secrets, reveal of hidden secrets, family and property. Etc.

Many of these traps are made by the protagonists themselves. Knowingly they err for some short term perceived advantage or other and it comes back to bite them on the bum. The karmic boomerang is very evident in many soap opera plots.


Their stuff can be found in real life on “The Jeremy Kyle Show” and in the newspaper columns of agony aunts like “Dear Deidre”. Sexual and therefore titillating problems are to be readily found for the salacious consumption of readership.

The simplest example of a trap of own making is the “expedient” lie. Faced with a difficult situation many tell a lie so as to avoid facing up to the reality of said situation. In an attempt to avoid; the trap, the hole, has started to be dug. When the subject to be avoided raises its head again, additional levels of lies, mistruth and spin are needed. The hole, the self-made trap, gets deeper. Soon the avoider is deep in a trap of their own making from which there is no easy escape. By seeking to avoid and deceive they have made the situation much worse. The trap deepens and there is now no escape. The trap then induces fear and paranoia about being found out. There is an additional layer of emotional angst associated with the trap, which many may carry with them to the grave. The drama causes dis-ease and suffering.

Occasionally the brown stuff hits the fan and the house of deceit comes crumbling down in full public view and the contents of the trap are revealed in all their glory for all to see.

This is a precis of many soap opera plot lines. One could say that life imitates “art”.

The classic metaphor is the plate spinning trick. Said spinner spins so many plates on poles. There are only so many plates that can be spun. If the spinner puts the straw on the camel’s back plate up not only one plate but many crash to the ground and break.

The problem with traps of own making is that people nearly always make the trap of own making worse by continuing to dig the hole. They cannot see beyond the trap. They just keep on digging. On occasion the hole then implodes upon them. The trap induces an egocentric myopia and the world starts to close in. People in the trap may imagine their behaviours justified right up until the jaws of the trap close and beyond. They may write come back articles for national newspapers seeking to re-affirm the very narrative which brought their downfall. They cannot let go of the trap which they have created for themselves. It lasts in proportion to the depth to which it was dug.

Nearly all traps of own making have a least a pinch of the flaked sea-salt of deceit in their seasoning. That salt may come from the tears of others.

The biggest commonality of traps of own making is the “getting away with it” mentality.

“I, the clever, the magnificent, am sufficiently skilful that I can wing it and get away with it…I do not have to pay for my dalliance. I am all powerful.”

Unfortunately, the universe is bigger than our egos and self-diagnosed omniscience…

The karmic boomerang is a genuine phenomenon of our current manifested universe. It is real unlike many of the things which humans say and are adamant about.

Wrong Battles

Because of late I have been setting “traps” for cats and moles I have found it interesting re-reading Castaneda. People who are paranoid and suspicious might imagine that I am metaphorically talking about traps which I am setting for them. Nowt so queer as folk. I am really catching physical plane cats and physical plane moles.

There are a group of people for whom winning is important, and losing is something which they hate. Trump says he is a winner but many of his businesses have failed. He forgets these in his victory rhetoric.

There are those that really want to beat others, perhaps that makes them feel less insecure.

Those keen on winning have some metrics of success by which they might measure their victory. Rarely does it occur to them that their success metrics may not transfer to those who they are seeking to beat. They the imagined protagonists may be fighting entirely different battles. They may not be fighting at all, there can be a unilateral imaginary “war”.

For example if someone wants to gain one-up-man-ship against me in their own context I am quite likely to let them “win” because I do not assign any importance to the context in which they are so adamant about winning. It is their drama not mine.

If someone wants to be right and clever, who am I to disappoint them by proving otherwise?

Those keen on winning want to win quickly and soon, this means that although they may have a short term victory the long term consequences may differ. The sweet taste of victory may pale in the subsequent shit storm.

They know nothing of patience.

When I was a child of 10-11 my father bought me “Don’t Die in the Bundu” by Colonel Grainger of the Rhodesian army {SAS}. He had me read this. He himself had been an army officer in the Malayan insurgency. So, I learned theoretical bushcraft at an early age, in Zambia. I have practiced some of the techniques subsequently.

Although a “city slicker” on one level I have lived in the African Bundu and the Australian bush of the far outback.

The thing about traps is patience. Without it they are no good.

People convinced on their victory metrics and thereby blinded may walk straight into a trap of their own making. There is no need for me to set any traps.

Many people walk head first into traps of their own making, because they are fighting the wrong “battle”.

The correct battle, in normal society, is nearly always with self and not any external enemy.

Am I your enemy?