I thought I would do a more light hearted posting today. The title came to me as I was watching 2 mourning doves build a nest and I started to think of all the different animals that have visited our backyard.

It all started about 10 years ago when we had a blank canvas and we where able to design and build our back yard oasis. After we put in a pond I immediately rushed to the pet store for some fish. I can now say I am the proud Dad of about 22 fish with some as big as 6 to 7 inches.

Keeping with the pond I was up feeding the fish and low and behold a huge bull frog was staring and croaking at me. He lasted about a week and then disappeared. (we are optimistic he found a bigger pond). This pond though keeps attracting. Sitting eating a nice meal outdoors I hear a lot of splashing (too much for my fish) so I go looking. Now I have lived in Saskatchewan and these critters are very poplar but this is the first time I had seen a musk rat in New Brunswick. My first thought was he was going to eat my fish so I went to get a broom to encourage him to leave. My wife said no, checked the internet and thank God they are vegetarians. I wake up and was on my way to get a live trap and was stopped by my neighbor. He starts telling me about an animal that looked like a cat walking up the street. This so called cat turned and looked at him, scowled and went on its merry way. It was my musk rat back on his journey.

Winter time is just as much fun. We had a squirrel for 1 winter and we decided to throw peanuts out for him. We would watch as he ran on top of the snow banks, took the nuts in his mouth and shot off. When spring arrived we found stashes of peanuts all over the back yard in different locations. He was storing them and eating when he needed.

The same winter we had a robin that had forgot to leave before the weather got bad. My wife made me put grapes on the arbor all winter. The robin was happy. The final critter was a ground hog. We came home one day to find the ground hog with his butt on our lettuce and pulling out the bok choy and chomping down. It was too funny to stop so we let him eat the whole crop.

Needless to say it’s great to be able to enjoy this type of activity in your own back yard. Alas the doves have left as the egg was taken, such is the circle of life.

We are optimistic and waiting patiently to see what mother nature brings us this year. If you read this and have had similar stories please leave a comment below. I look forward to reading them.

Eric Gall is a mortgage specialist for TMG-Atlantic. If you are purchasing, refinancing or renewing your mortgage contact Eric at eric.gall@mortgagegrp.com