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Are you THE John Madden?

By Gary Bogue
Thursday, January 19th, 2006 at 11:55 am in Animals, Raccoons, Wildlife.

Gary: Please provide me with a copy of your Raccoon Fact Sheet. Your column in the Times was interesting and fun. /John Madden

John: Are you THE John Madden? /Gary

Gary: Sorry, I’m only THE to members of the family (and sometimes I wonder about that!). Since I’m older than the coach, I consider myself THE.

Thanks for the raccoon material. I live in Altadena, CA, an unincorporated area between Pasadena and the mountains. Our last house had a family of the critters (raccoons) living under a large deck. There must have been five in the family. It seems there was enough food around (probably set out for dogs) so that we had no lawn damage in 25 years. Eight years ago we moved to an area that abuts the National Forest and the bandits have been doing all of the things described in your fact sheet.

We also have deer, skunks, opossums, coyotes (the largest male I have ever seen came through the backyard last week), an occasional mountain lion, and, a small black bear (brown phase) who has been sighted along a 10-mile stretch of the forest. Love it. We are at the 1,780-ft. elevation and can see Catalina and Santa Monica Bay on a good day. I’ll put up with minimal danger and an occasional lawn-feeding beasty anytime. Live and let live.

I logged onto and found it to be quite good. So I have it delivered to my computer every day and keep up with the Northern California news. /John

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One Response to “Are you THE John Madden?”

  1. Nancy Ferrara Says:

    Hi Gary…Long-time listener, first-time caller! I know you must go into the Times office every so often…and in doing so, you probably go past the new ARF building. Q: Have you seen the abundant colony of ground squirrels or chipmunks? The mounds are getting enormous. And the road at the corner of Oak Grove and Ygnacio, the critters have all but taken over the empty field. As we live near-by I wonder what we can do to discourage the infestation from moving into our lawns, gardens and home foundations. I hate to think of some agency being required to poison or gas the little critters bcause we all enjoy being close to natural wildlife. But I think its about time some vector control agency thought about lacing the little critters’ nuts and berries with a birth control substance. Or maybe hire a Pied Piper of Chipmunks, to lure away the males. Or would it work better if he lured away the females. Any remarks would be appreciated. Nancy, Walnut Creek

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