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By Kathleen Kalina
Wild boar run all over the southern US destroying crops and digging holes that cripple cattle. They are dangerous to pets, small stock animals and humans. Ranchers routinely hold hunts when there are too many boar. They advertise and people sign up to go on a certain day. They can pay to stay overnight in the bunkhouse and eat. A cattle butcher is there to cut up the meat of the boar shot.
You Might Meet
By Kathleen Kalina
For people who love the outdoors, getting bit by a poisonous spider is a real possibility.
The three top bad spiders that are very venomous are the brown recluse, the black widow and the hobo spider. All are found all over the United States.
The most common spider is the brown recluse and can be found near your house. I got bit by one and got very sick. My nephew at the age of 4 was playing in his sandbox and got bit, his leg swelled up and turned color. He had to be rushed to the hospital.
Photos of the Brown Recluse- compliment of Ohio State University and Texas A&M
Photos of the Black Widow. Ohio State University and University of Missouri
Photos of Hobo Spider- Washington State University
Symptoms of these spiders can cause itching or rash, pain radiating for the site, muscle pain and cramping. Reddish to purplish color or blister, increased swelling, difficulty breathing, headache, Nausea, Fever, Chills, anxiety and high blood pressure.
When I got bit by the brown recluse on my shoulder, it turned purple and swollen. I got on a plane several hours later and by the time I got to my destination (two hours) I had a fever and chills and felt really sick for several days. Everyone is different.
The Center for For Disease control recommends these first aid measures.
Stay calm, Identify the type of spider if possible. Wash the area with soap and water. Apply a washcloth with ice or cold water to bite area. Elevate area if possible. Do not attempt to remove venom. Immediately seek medical attention.
Black Widows: Are identified by the pattern of red on the abdomen. Most bites occur when humans disturb webs. Its bite is different than the others by two puncture wounds. Pain is felt at bite site. The neurotoxin quickly spreads to the chest, abdomen or the entire body.
Brown Recluse: Brown in color with a fiddle/violin shape on its head and has 6 equal sized eyes (whereas most spiders have 8 eyes).
Hobo Spiders: Large and brown with a distinct pattern of yellow markings on its abdomen. Unlike other spiders who have dark bands on their legs, the Hobo does not have these bands.
They build funnel types of webs. They do not climb like other spiders, they are fast runners. The bite may seem unpainful at first with a slow developing wound. They are more likely to attack if provoked.
Most of the areas where these spiders are found are near houses or structures, firewood, radiators, behind furniture and in closets.
“If I leave here tomorrow, would you still remember me?
For I must be travelin’ on now. There’s too many places I got to see.
And if I stay here with you boy, things just couldn’t be the same.
For I’m as free as a bird now, and this bird you can not change.”
That classic Southern rock song “Free Bird”, with the cool guitar licks by Lynyrd Skynyrd, is a favorite of mine. I especially love to listen to the song while out driving.
A curious thing in Minnesota is that when asked a question on distance, like: “How far is it to Duluth?” we’ll answer that question with minutes in time, rather than miles. “Oh it’s about 45 minutes away.”
When my husband asked how long it takes to get to one of my favorite bowfishing spots, I said, “Four and a half Free Birds”.
You see, the track “Free Bird” is exactly ten minutes long and is my way of relaying distance.
I discovered that it takes almost two Free Birds to drive from my uncle’s lake property to my cousin’s farm where I hunt.
How long does it take to get up to the lake? Well, if we stop for food and a potty break, it would be about twenty-four Free Birds. Twenty-one without.
I’m lucky that I live less than one Free Bird from my work, except that I don’t get to finish hearing the whole song.
My annual fall hunting trip from Minneapolis out to Glenrock, Wyoming, is seventy-two Free Birds. Not that I would actually listen to it seventy-two times in a row, but you get the drift! (It’s a long drive!)
As you can tell, I and my family are having fun with my reference for distance in Free Birds.
How many Free Birds until you get to go hunting next? As I write this, for me it's 90 Free Birds.
"...For I’m as free as a bird now..."
Alaska and the Yukon
North Alabama, Mississippi p
and North Georgia
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