The recent good spell has sparked a rise in desert mammals popping up across the county according to animal spotter Hugh Pat Bonner from Ardboe. Elephants in Eskra, gazelles in Greencastle and camels in Carrickmore have become the norm as the animals acclimatise to the balmy mid-Ulster climate. Bonner admitted that even he was surprised to see an alligator drinking out of a ditch outside the Battery bar.
“Aye, thon was a bit of a shock. What surprised me most was that the alligator just nodded at me like as if he’s been here for years. My brother said he saw a cheetah in Moortown chasing after midges. I wonder do these animals lie dormant in Ireland until we get Sahara-like weather.”
John Agnew admitted he now misses being stuck behind cattle on the road to Dungannon compared to what’s happening now:
“I was on the Killeeshil Road yesterday and was caught behind a herd of elephants heading towards Castlecaulfield. You think cow-pats are bad. These boys drop monster-sized dungs and then swipe the stuff at your windscreen with their trunks. Then from the Killyliss Road we were attacked by a shower of monkeys. I’ll never complain again about oul Cullen’s cattle.”
Carrickmore residents however have welcomed the arrival of 44 camels. Mary Kelly, a lady of the night, admitted:
“They’ve been a welcome addition to the Carmen landscape. These boys can haul 600 bales no bother and only need a spoonful of water. Also, their milk is less fattening. Women are drinking straight from the teet and are losing pounds by the day. And the humps are good oul craic too.”
However, an oranguan in Donemana is proving to be a social pest, spying on women getting ready by hanging upside down from guttering.