Outdoors: Woodchucks woo
The long-running show The Fantasticks opens with a haunting song:
“Try to remember the kind of September…when life was slow and oh, so mellow. “
Later in the show, right before the song “Soon It’s Gonna Rain” the narrator says-:
It begins with a season which,
For want of a better word,
We might as well call – September.
It begins with a forest where the woodchucks woo.”
A lovely image, but I kind of wish that Tom Jones had left woodchucks and a few distasteful images out of his lyrics. For woodchucks, September is not mellow nor is it a time for courtship.
Woodchucks woo, begin courtship in early spring, perhaps as early as February. Soon after he comes out of hibernation, a male will spend a few days with a female getting acquainted—courting— before mating in March.
And it’s not unusual for the polygamous male to move on to woo a series of other mates. And for the record, woodchucks usually woo in woodland edges or fields, not in the forest.
For woodchucks, September is not slow and mellow, but rather a frantic time for serious, SERIOUS eating. They consume more than a pound of vegetation a day. They need to build up fat reserves to survive the winter hibernation.
Deep in December, woodchuck don't remember. Their hearts are beating far too slowly to remember, much less follow.