Later, I parked in a neighbor’s barn lot. He was outside working so I struck up a conversation. Talk turned serious when he said, “I think there is a big predator around here.” He had two goats die last week. He placed them near a brush pile. Two days later they were gone, no bones, horns, no evidence they had ever been there. “Something big had to carry them off,” he said.
“A year ago, two goats were missing in the fenced enclosure. There was some blood. Whatever killed them had to jump the fence with the goat,” he continued. “I used to see a lot of deer-seldom see one anymore. That is a big creek bottom, over there, and in it hides something not native to these parts.”
I wondered, as I crossed the lane and entered the woods, “Is this crossbow and three bolts all I need to hunt these bottoms?”
Rabbit season opens Nov. 8.
Rick Bramwell’s columns on the outdoors can be found in each Thursday’s edition.