Hunting is a tradition and a legacy in our family. From dove hunting to whitetail the trend is set. It is part of our DNA. A longing deep down that is ever present. This particular story involves a German shorthaired pointer (another tradition in our family) named Sam and an extreme varmint that gave us a run for our money.
It was a late summer afternoon, the sun simmering just below a boil at 95 degrees on our central Texas ranch. Not a worry in the world, sitting on a shady porch with warm breeze whistling through the screen kind of day. The dove slayers around me had decided to give the birds a reprieve for the evening and delve into the finer points of afternoon porch sitting – a worthy and lengthy pursuit I must say. In the midst of discussing favorite beverages and dove hunting lore of seasons past, a distant bark drifted through the mesquites to our shady, relaxed paradise. Not a muscle moved in fear of overheating. Then once again a muffled bark drifted through the heat waves and lapped at the porch steps. Our ears perked up to the sound of a chase and a varmint battle to come and the Porch Sitters came to life and rushed to investigate. Grabbing a .22 rifle and a few ice cold "bottles of water", the crew jumped in the truck and headed towards the scene ready for a fight.
Once on the scene, the notorious German shorthaired pointer, Sam, was ecstatic. Barking and wining with the expectation of releasing his pent up anger on the cornered quarry. As we stepped out of the truck to investigate, a slightly puzzling scene presented itself. Sam was clearly interested in a large log at the base of a small mesquite tree. In his fervor he had chewed and clawed at a hole in the log. In hunts and stories past, we were pretty wary of logs and the possibility that a foul skunk could be lying in wait ready to ruin someone's weekend. Keeping that in mind, we scouted around the log, looking for a hole big enough for a skunk to crawl in. Negative on the skunk front. The investigation gets much closer and personal now.
We rolled the log, banged on it with sticks, picked it up and drop it, kicked it and all manner of futile tactics. All the while, Sam was going ballistic as if he was applauding and encouraging us to keep going. Still we were finding nothing and losing confidence fast. As the crew turned back to truck, Sam put on a display of serious anguish and disbelief that we were giving up on his hard chased enemy.
Knowing that we could not leave Sam, we put our heads together to figure out what to do about this log varmint. Another "bottle of water" is needed to focus and quench our thirst in the dry afternoon heat. While retrieving said beverages from the ice chest in the back of the truck, I see an ax. The answer was clear. Thus began the end of days for the Log Varmint.
With my ax shouldered, the log pulled out and the Porch Sitters holding on to Sam, I layed into the wooden home of the Log Varmint. After a few good whacks I glimpsed some sort of fur through a crack in the log. We were getting closer! With a well-placed swing the log split wide open and the log varmint sprung from its hiding place and ran straight into the Porch Sitters and Sam. Everyone scattered, completely caught off guard. The Porch Sitters quickly gathered their thoughts (and pride) and start whooping and hollering in all manner of chaos.
The Log Varmint had treed itself in the small mesquite tree and was glaring viciously from his perch ready for a fight. Sam continued to go ballistic; barking his head off, whining; knowing that FINALLY the time had come for his retribution on the Log Varmint. As the Porch Sitters casually sauntered up to the mesquite to cast their final gaze on the Log Varmint a roar of laughter engulfed the tree.
Turns out the mighty Log Varmint was a Mighty Mouse! The Mighty Mouse was perched on his single mesquite thorn ready to do damage to the rowdy party at his feet.
The Log VarmintAfter the laughing subsided, Sam was still insistent that the now Mighty Mouse had to be dealt with. So with a swift shake of the limb, the Mighty Mouse made his decent, teeth bared and claws at the ready. There was a scuffle and a race and the Mighty Mouse was no more. Then Sam, the proud warrior carried his prize with his lips pulled back to place his trophy in front of the Porch Sitters for their approval.
Many ear scratches and head pats were given to the warrior as we congratulated Sam and had another "bottle of water" recounting the legend of the Battle of the Mighty Mouse.
Sam the Shorthair Hero
Be sure to stay tuned for more tales from Sam and the Porch Sitters as we perfect the art of porch sitting and slaying vicious varmints.