PHIL WIELAND: Taking care of the deer-ly departed

2013-05-10T00:00:00Z PHIL WIELAND: Taking care of the deer-ly departedBy Phil Wieland phil.wieland@nwi.com, (219) 548-4352 nwitimes.com

One of the joys of commuting along more-or-less rural roads is watching as the bodies of roadkills slowly swell to explosive proportions. (My apologies if you are reading this over breakfast. You might want to turn to the comics page instead.)

It's like when England's King Harold II was killed at the battle of Hastings in 1066 by an arrow through the eye, which generated a public groundswell, along with the eye swell, for tough longbow control laws.

Harold's body lay in state in a church for several days until he reportedly exploded like a smelly I.E.D. all over mourners. It's information like that that makes history so interesting (but not good breakfast reading).

Most of the time the squirrels, opossums, raccoons and whatever I see seem to lie on or next to the road for several days until, I thought, Mother Nature's carrion clean-up crew takes care of them. I questioned whether that was the case this week as I watched a deer carcass swell next to Ind. 130 in Porter County.

The deer was lying next to the berm a short distance from County Line Road, so I figured it must have been "offed" by the Lake County deer mafia for some unforgivable offense. Maybe the deer insulted the King of the Forest by saying Bambi was really a more appropriate name for the Queen of the Forest.

So the hit was ordered in Lake County and the body dumped over the county line. Adding insult to fatal injury, the deer was laid with its butt facing traffic. You don't mess with the deer mafia.

Driving past it each day this week, I was surprised first that no one tossed it in the bed of their pickup to take home as their own. By Wednesday, with the deer looking a lot heftier, I wondered when it would become a fabulously fetid feast for a flock of vultures.

Then I got to thinking about King Harold and what would happen if that deer exploded next to someone's vehicle, including mine. There isn't enough window washer fluid in the county to prevent you from being blinded and possibly crashing into something or someone.

I called the Porter County Highway Department, but they pick up dead animals only on county roads. Ind. 130 is a state road. I called the Indiana Department of Transportation LaPorte District office, and the lady said they would take care of it.

On Thursday, I saw the deer was "taken care of" by moving it farther off the road into the high grass, I guess so the buzzards can enjoy their carrion buffet out of the line of traffic. Apparently, the buzzards union is pretty strong in this area.

At least I don't have to see the deer's butt any more.

The opinions are those of the writer. He can be reached at phil.wieland@nwi.com or (219) 548-4352.

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