Letters to the editor with pictures since 2002. Published on Big Pine Key’s garbage days, Tuesdays and Fridays.

Delisting Key Deer] I went to the U.S. Fish & Wildlife meeting in Marathon about delisting the Key deer as an endangered species. Some observations:

  • Our county commissioner was there, but said nothing.  Just trying to show the colors and make people think she actually cares about Big Pine, I guess.
  • If the way they staged their meeting is any indication of their level of competence, the Key deer are in big trouble no matter what.  It took three of them more than 45 minutes to figure out how to make the AV system work.
  • Though it was common knowledge that their recommendation was to delist the Key deer, the moderator managed to avoid even mentioning it for an hour and a half until a question from a member of the audience backed her into a corner where she couldn’t avoid acknowledging that such was the case.
  • Even the data that they shared at the meeting shows that, as a result of the screw worm epidemic and Hurricane Irma, there are no more Key deer today than there were a decade ago.  If that’s the case, why weren’t they talking about delisting the species it back then, especially now with all the current concern about how terrible sea level rise and climate change are.

God save us from the bureaucrats.

[Key Deer Glands] Interesting deer fact from Save Our Key Deer. The world of deer scent glands! We first became concerned/interested when many months ago we watched an old Key Deer buck pee all over his hind legs that he had bent inward. We figured the poor old guy has to pee all over his legs in his old age.” Then, a few months ago we witnessed a doe doing the same thing … but she was shaking her legs back and forth while doing it! Not having the opportunity to observe deer behavior so closely before we moved to the Keys, we did some research. Turns out deer are loaded with glands that have very specific communication purposes. Most of them are unidentifiable to humans, but a few can be smelled quite pungently, and deer enhance them with urine. Here’s your Key Deer gland primer. Next time you see your favorite Key Deer, you’ll be able to see several of his/her crucial glands!
1) Tarsal Gland – on the inner surface of hind leg (can’t miss it!). This is a patch of extra-bristly hairs, each growing out of its own fat pad based below the skin. The fat pads secrete an oily substance that coats the hairs. Tarsal gland hair is stained noticeably darker than the rest of the inner leg – very prominent on Key Deer. A whitetail’s tarsal gland can be considered its resumé or bio. The scent indicates a deer’s sex, health and dominance status within the herd. Bucks are famous for urinating over their tarsals and rubbing them together during the rut as an advertisement of their dominance to other bucks and virility to local does.
2) Metatarsal Gland: A puff of white hair just above the hoof and projecting rearward. Some researchers believe metatarsals serve a thermoregulatory purpose, helping the animal measure cold conditions and manage biological reactions
3) Interdigital Gland: A sparsely haired sac, found on all four hooves of a deer and secreting a dingy yellowish fluid to the ground. It is a deer’s calling card. Odor is left in the deer’s track, allowing other deer to know an animal was in the area, whether it was a buck or doe, and, if a buck, how big or dominant it is. Does’ interdigital gland secretions can tell a male she is ready to breed; that’s when you see bucks bird-dogging, nose to the ground. Interdigital scent also reveals how old the track is, and even which way the deer is traveling. So much info revealed, and humans just bitch that a person’s feet smell…
4) Preputial Gland: in a buck’s penile sheath. Increases functionality during the breeding process…. That’s all you need to know.
5) Preorbital Gland: A slit immediately ahead of each eye, it may serve dual purposes. Research shows that ungulates beyond whitetails use preorbital secretions to leave scent markings and communicate.
6) Forehead Gland: You can’t see the forehead gland, but you can see what it produces on rutting bucks, some of which sport black forehead patches, others brown or even reddish ones. When a buck rubs its antlers and forehead glands on shrubs, trees, fenceposts or anything else, it is embedding its signature.
7) Nasal Gland: You can’t see the nasal glands themselves, but you can see the result — a deer’s moist, shiny, well-lubricated nose. Nasal glands keep a whitetail’s nose in a moistened state with a coat of mucus film that captures scent molecules. Nasal glands are one reason whitetails have such an acute sense of smell – a sense they will trust independent of all others.
8) Salivary Gland: Produces saliva, just like our own gland.
So, with all this vast information the deer get about each other from their gland systems, we guess they (unlike humans) never tell their friends, “Ughh, you stink! Pleeeeease go take a bath!”
Minimum wage is meant as payment to those who produce minimum product output. If people were smart enough to want piece work, where they get paid per product volume, then they might have to work to make a true living wage. A $15 or $20 minimum wage is nothing but piracy to support the great unwashed. If the bums in this world had it their way, they would all be on welfare or guarding garbage dumps at $100 per hour

 

Deer Abby, is Wetstock 15 happening this weekend at Picnic Island? (Abby: Yes my child, Wetstock 15 is just around the corner Sunday, September 1. Nest time you have a question search bigpinekey.com by entering your query at the top of the page in the little search window, then click the magnifying glass. If what you are looking for doesn’t appear click “Next>>” until you find it.)

 

 

John Lennon snorting coke in  “A Hard Day’s Night” movie, 1964

[Tropical Storm] I see the weather people are excited now that Dorian may become a hurricane.  They live to hype this up.  As we Keys people know, unless Jim Cantore shows up in Key West, it is a false alarm!

 

 

 

 

[Car A/C] When it’s too damn hot in Florida. Video

[Truth] What would the world be like if the press just stated all true facts and not glorified everything to sell the news and advertisements? Would people be more loving instead of going around hating one another? Would the world think instead being hypnotized into wars? Would we wake up?
[“Gun deaths”] A poster last week stated that gun deaths and automotive deaths are about equal in the US.  Look closer at the numbers and you will find about 40k automotive deaths, Way too many, and about 35k in gun deaths. Similar enough. The telling difference is that about 22k of those gun deaths are suicides.  You really must subtract those suicides from the numbers to get any realistic comparison to a non-comparable set of tragic deaths.  Dig deeper and subtract another 500 justified shootings and 1K accidents and the homicides are even less.

 

 

Want to go on a cruise? Take some Dramamine before watching this video

[Old] You know you’re old when your breakfast, lunch and dinner are the only oral action you’re going to get!
[Key Deer Protection] Rubio urges FWC to ensure Key Deer populations remain protected. Link

 

 

 

Jimi Hendrix at 19, Paratrooper, U.S. Army, 1961

[Gutenberg.org] Free out of copywrite ebooks. Link

 

 

[Free Food] King Henry VII was waited upon by noblemen, with a Court where about seven hundred persons dined daily in the Tower at his expense, entertained by jesters, minstrels, huntsmen, and his famous leopards.

[Good Duck] When a little boy accidentally dropped his sandal into a muddy ravine, it was returned by none other than a thoughtful duck. Link

 

 

Puerto Rico now under hurricane watch, tropical storm warning. What’s next for Florida. Video

[“Woman sit at bar stools too”] This is true, but what kind of woman? The kind that sit there and wait to sue somebody, to put a filthy pocketbook on the bar (should be illegal), to gab and disturb quite libationing, or the worse–some mother-in-law.

 

 

 

 

Is it still “skinny dipping” if fat people do it?

[US Economy] What’s the big deal if the stock market goes down? Those gamblers don’t work for a living anyway, they just suck the bloody profits from us working class fools.