SHOUT OUT TO GLOUCESTER’S ANIMAL CONTROL OFFICERS TEAGAN AND JAMIE!

Gloucester’s Animal Control Officers Teagan and Jamie were on the scene at the crack of dawn at 4:30 this morning fixing the posts around the PiPl nesting area and writing tickets. Last night Jamie was on the beach as well. Thank you Jamie, Teagan, and Chief McCarthy for the stepped up patrolling.

The posts needed to be pulled out of the sand because last night we had yet another super high tide, all the way up to the bluff for most of the length of the beach.

I read a comment yesterday that stated falsely that the animal control officers make $80,000.00 a year and sit around and drink coffee all day. I have it on good authority that their combined incomes do not total $80,000.00 a year. Stating misinformation and disparaging the hard working people in our community is creating a false narrative and is hurtful to everyone involved, to the people, the dog owners, and to the shorebirds.

Teagan and Jamie writing tickets at dawn this morning.

We don’t have as much an enforcement problem as we do an issue with entitlement and ignorance. Ignorance in the sense that scofflaws may be from out of town and may be unable to read, and entitlement in that some people know the rules and know the dangers that dogs pose to the shorebirds, yet choose to do as they please.

Upon entering Good Harbor Beach this morning, the scofflaws with their dog walked by these three signs.

Walking a dog on a beach is a purely recreational activity. For teeny tiny nesting shorebird chicks, protecting that same beach habitat is a matter of life and death.

If you see a dog at anytime or anywhere on Good Harbor Beach, please call this number: 978-281-9900.

As of late, it appears as though many more people now have the need of a service dog. Having a service dog requires that it be on leash at all times, not jumping on people, and not running through the dunes. Service dogs cannot go in the dunes, or anywhere on the beach that is restricted to humans.

Would the people with service dogs consider taking their dog to any other of Cape Ann’s stunning beaches, rather than to Good Harbor Beach during shorebird nesting season I wonder? 

 Folks getting ticketed and escorted off the beach.

Truly, the most important action people can take is to volunteer to help watch over the chicks. We have a number of folks posing as helpers but sadly, they are not actually volunteering for shifts. Two monitors on each shift would be ideal, but this year we have fewer volunteers, and don’t even have single person coverage during large chunks of time. Keeping watch over the baby birds will make a difference in whether or not the chicks survive. Anyone can be a volunteer and anyone of us can show you what to do. Finding people to help has been especially difficult on the weekends. Please contact kwhittaker@gloucester-ma.gov if you would like to lend a hand. Thank you so very much  

Six-day-old Piping Plover Chick

This morning’s dog tracks at Good Harbor Beach – Dog tracks are easy to spot and to differentiate from other canids (fox and coyote). For example, notice the sharp toenail indentation. Coyotes have rounded toe tip prints because they wear their nails down.

Dog tracks Good Harbor Beach

Look what other tracks were spied this week, deer! These too are easy to spot in the sand. The deer’s cloven hoof makes a broken heart shape.White-tailed Deer Tracks Good Harbor Beach

Today’s early morning Good Harbor Beach view of Thacher Island Twin Lights 

Does Rubber Duck Want to be a Mommy?

I think I figured it out. This has happened dozens of times. I lose track of Rubber Duck for a minute and the next thing I know she is perched onto another  round shiny object.

Rubber Duck and Joey at GMG Mug-Up
Rubber Duck and Joey at GMG Mug-Up

Jamie at Stones Pub was describing how he was not really that sleep deprived even with one week old baby boy Cameron taking up some of his time lately and the next thing you know Rubber Duck has jumped off the bar.

jamieRD
Rubber Duck and Jamie at Stone’s Pub

So. Do you think Rubber Duck wants to be a mommy? I never got around to explaining the birds and the bees to RD and now I don’t know how to break it to her. Should I put out a call to Homie and get a nice seagull egg for Rubber Duck to sit on?

A Gloucester Random Act Of Kindness- Jamie the Animal Control Officer

Jeffrey B French writes-

Hi Joey, i enjoy your blog, especially the photos, we live in such a beautiful place.You show me places I have not seen yet after living here 47 years. Last week, in broad daylight, someone tied a 9 year old Husky to the front stairs of my office, the Cape Ann Veterinary Hospital on Essex Ave, and took off. The person left an envelope tied to his collar containing $20 and a note saying they could no longer take care of "King". I called Jamie the Animal Control Officer, who came right away, and has been caring for the dog, walking him and spending time getting him to trust people again. He also comes on his day off. I know some people may think being an Animal Control Officer is kind of a heartless job, but I wanted you to know that the one we have in Gloucester is a special kind of person, and has gone out of his way to try to turn a bad situation into something good. As far as I know, "King" will be available for adoption at the end of a ten day confinement period.

Jeffrey B French, D.V.M.