Horrible little suckers: Trog and other animals


Mungo and I set out on a mission of discovery. We would know every blade of grass on our place by the time we finished our daily walks. I revelled in the land although thick lantana covered much of the non-paddock area. A long way beyond the chicken house we discovered a dam and although there were lots of floating plants it was large and it was full. The other dam visible to us from the house always looked as though it needed a good amount of rain to fill it. From this dam it seemed as though we had a creek bed, not dry but not running either. This meandered through the property from the dam to our northern boundary fence. This dampness made it the perfect habitat for leeches and they were in abundance here. The first time Mungo and I walked in this area I was unaware of the problem. It wasn’t long before I felt the familiar irritation I suffer and discovered I had numerous of the suckers crawling into my socks and shoes. There was little I could do about it except high-tail it out of the area as quickly as possible for to stop would have just been an open invitation to many more of the slimy, red-black, bloodsucking worm-like creatures to hitch a ride. Not having the means with me to remove the sucking parasites my best hope was to leave the area, remove those not yet latched on and head for home to the salt-cellar. Luckily, I managed to remove all but one which had managed to attach itself in the arch of my foot. When we arrived home I covered it in salt and watched with a deal of satisfaction as it quickly detached, agonised shortly then shrivelled in death. A little later I noticed that there was large amounts of blood on the timber floors.

“Are you bleeding?” I called to Rod.

“No. You probably missed a leech somewhere”

“I don’t think so”. I was in bare feet and I could see nothing coming from that direction.

“Mungo,” we both cried in unison. On examination the blood was indeed coming from him. I had not thought that he would be affected by the creatures and had not examined him. Now doing so I discovered he was bleeding from puncture wounds found in several of the soft fleshy pockets between his toes. Salt was not required as the offending suckers had already had their fill and detached, the anticoagulant they had injected still having an effect.

irene waters © 2013

About Irene Waters 19 Writer Memoirist

I began my working career as a reluctant potato peeler whilst waiting to commence my training as a student nurse. On completion I worked mainly in intensive care/coronary care; finishing my hospital career as clinical nurse educator in intensive care. A life changing period as a resort owner/manager on the island of Tanna in Vanuatu was followed by recovery time as a farmer at Bucca Wauka. Having discovered I was no farmer and vowing never again to own an animal bigger than myself I took on the Barrington General Store. Here we also ran a five star restaurant. Working the shop of a day 7am - 6pm followed by the restaurant until late was surprisingly more stressful than Tanna. On the sale we decided to retire and renovate our house with the help of a builder friend. Now believing we knew everything about building we set to constructing our own house. Just finished a coal mine decided to set up in our backyard. Definitely time to retire we moved to Queensland. I had been writing a manuscript for some time. In the desire to complete this I enrolled in a post grad certificate in creative Industries which I completed 2013. I followed this by doing a Master of Arts by research graduating in 2017. Now I live to write and write to live.
This entry was posted in Memoir, Trog and other Animals and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Horrible little suckers: Trog and other animals

  1. markbialczak says:

    Oh, Mungo! Good piece, Irene.


  2. xbox2121 says:

    Your story about mungo and the leeches makes for a good tale


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