Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Joe VS The Anole

Well I have been having a battle with a brown anole in my apartment since April or May. I caught one around that time and put it in my tank with "Killa" my pacman frog. Killa was taking his sweet time to eat the anole though, a couple weeks, and my door was open in the evening because it was the dry season and I was letting in the cool air. Along with the cool air I let in another brown anole who stayed into the wet season and is now trapped.

It's common for me to get anoles and geckos in my apartment. Geckos are more than welcome. They stay on the walls and ceilings, seldom go on the floor, and they don't bug me. Green anoles aren't so common. They are native and stick mostly to bushes and trees and aren't a problem. But the brown anole, an invasive anole from the Caribbean has taken over and eats the green anole. These brown anoles are fast and can jump really far. Just one of many introduced species that are destroying the native habitat. These anoles along with Burmese Python, marine toads and Cuban frogs are suppose to killed if you catch them. Everyone knows I like frogs and nature and such, but I do kill these things due to the fact that they wipe out the native species and are a huge problem here.

So the anole that has taken over my apartment is the invasive brown anole. For months I kept seeing this stupid thing run and jump in the glass on my aquarium then bounce off and hit the floor. He was trying to get some booty from the anole I left in with "Killa". Once Killa ate the anole the other brown anole only came around when it was feeding time and there were crickets in the aquarium. But I kept finding evidence of the anole around my apartment in the form of anole poo on my tile floor. I was getting pretty annoying and started setting up mouse traps. But a mouse trap doesn't get set off by a small anole so that didn't work so great.

So one day I'm sitting on the couch and I see a little beetle or roach of some sort running across the tile. I haven't had many of these since the brown anole invaded and it became quite clear why. I wanted to get up and smash the bug but I was being lazy so I just watched it run. Next thing I see is the brown anole running across the room, takes the bug, has half of it hanging out his mouth, and runs off to his lair, under my stuff I got out of storage while waiting to move. So then I kinda had a change of heart about wanting to kill this anole.

Well that only lasted a couple days. Pretty soon I was finding anole poo on the floor again. Then one morning I go to put on my Dr. Martin boots for work and I feel wiggling by my toes. I rip off my boots and there is the brown anole who jumps out of my boot and runs off. So 2 weeks ago I grabbed my blowgun and shot the anole. He was laying under my total gym and my stuff from storage not moving. I thought for sure he was dead. So I grabbed a plastic stake and tried to pull him out from under there but he got up and ran away. I hadn't seen him since then, until this morning.

So today was the end for the anole. I fed my frogs last night and the crickets are really loud. Mr. anole came out looking for some food. I grabbed my blowgun and shot the anole right under my kitchen table. I saw sparks from where the dart hit the tile so I thought I missed, hard to believe because I'm a damn good shot. Well then I see the anole and I hit him right above his rear legs, in the abdomen. He was squirming, kicking, and rolling around on the floor, and he looked like a kabob so I didn't think he could run off. I thought I'd just go over and pick him up by the dart (about a five inch hunting dart with a barbed end, there's no way he's getting that thing out), and then I could just feed him to Killa. Well he ran off again, under the total gym.

So time to get creative, right? Really, I need my own show for this next move. I have a magnet that is capable of lifting 200 pounds or so. So I pulled that thing out and put it next to a high traffic area of the anole by the total gym. The dart is metal so if he goes anywhere near it he's going to get stuck and it's over for him. On top of that I have a mechanics magnet, one that looks like an antenna and mechanics use it to get nuts and bolts that get dropped in hard to reach areas. I couldn't find it before work, but when I get home if he's not already stuck to the big magnet or dead I'm going to use this other magnet to fish him out. So I think the war is over with the anole. I'm just waiting to confirm his death but there is no way he is going to survive with that dart in him. He'll either die or get stuck to my magnet trap.

More to come once I confirm the kill. I would have done it this morning but would have been late to work.

Brown Anole (Bahama Anole)

Green Anole (Carolina Anole), these are native to the Southeast.

House Gecko. Not native but nice to have around to eat the bugs and save money on insurance.