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07 April 2003 - 11:47

minex cages

Anyone know what the heck these are for?

You see just about everything you can imagine out here on these ranchettes in the desert. Places where folks have bought 40, 80 or 160 acres of desert shrub, often sight unseen, for whatever motivation.

Many planned to live on their land.

Few still do.

Some come to irrigate, only to find there is a reason why we call this place a desert. Others to grow stock, only to discover there is a reason why the production of this land is measured in "acres per cow", not "cows per acre". (If you're being generous and assuming good weather, it's about 16 acres per cow.)

One supposedly came to raise dogs. And got shut down when a game warden found several dogs dead, still chained to their posts.

To be honest, some come here to steal. I know which "house" is using the 13-foot 2x8s from my guzzler for their rafters. And the fellows who swiped new snowmachines, because their old ones would no longer make the ten-mile trip in and out of their "ranchette", are probably still living at state expense just outside town.

Some come here to hide. The ex-Marine in the dugout would be one of those.

But this one I haven't figured out.

I got concerned enough when he built the barn over the top of his motor home, and then added a chain-link security fence and guard dogs. I mean, if women or children start disappearing from the community, this is the place I would want to search first.

But now these cages are showing up. Built out of wood pallets and scraps of steel siding. All the same size, all lined inside with chicken wire. All lined up in three or four spots on his property.

These happen to be close to the public road. Well posted with "No Trespassing" and "Keep Out" signs. But I can't see or hear anything inside any of them. No idea what they are for.

I count over 40 of 'em.

And I'm concerned.

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